Volunteering for Science Bowl

Alert
COVID-19 Updates and Resources COVID-19 Updates and Resources

Call for Volunteers!

We are seeking volunteers to serve as judges, timekeepers, scorekeepers, and moderators at Science Bowl events.

Ames Lab science bowl volunteers

Each year dozens of Ames Laboratory scientists and staff--along with faculty, staff and students from Iowa State University--volunteer their time to serve as judges, moderators, timers, scorekeepers and runners for Science Bowl. It takes each of you to ensure that our events run as smoothly as possible.

  • As competition officials, we expect that you will come prepared to perform your official duties:
  • Read and become familiar with the Science Bowl rules
  • Attend volunteer training
  • Moderators and Judges - read through questions prior to the event
  • Show up promptly for all assignments
  • Be respectful to all students, coaches, staff and each other

If you're a new Science Bowl volunteer, learn about the volunteer positions available, described below.

What does a moderator do?

Minimum requirements:

  1. Be able to articulate clearly and maintain a good pace
  2. Know and be able to apply all of the rules
  3. Read and review the questions prior to the event
  4. Have a college degree in math or the sciences

 

Introductions

  1. Follow the outline on the official score sheet
  2. Ask the coaches to shake hands, introduce themselves, and sit together near the back of the room
  3. Identify who will be acknowledging the students

 

Reading the Questions

  1. Announce whether it is a toss-up or bonus question
  2. Announce the question number
  3. Announce the question category
  4. Announce whether it is multiple choice or short answer
  5. Read the question
  6. If the question is interrupted, stop reading and say, "Interrupt"

 

Who won?

  1. Complete the official score sheet
  2. Ensure both team captains sign the score sheet

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf
What does a science judge do?

Minimum requirements (combined with rules judge)

  1. Be able to follow the competition flow
  2. Know and be able to apply all of the rules
  3. Read and review the questions prior to the event
  4. Have a college degree in math or the sciences

 

Ensure that

  1. The correct teams are in the competition room
  2. The moderator is reading questions from the correct round
  3. The moderator is reading the questions correctly (not skipping words, and with correct pronunciation)

 

Control the buzzer system

  1. Wait to reset the buzzer system on toss-up questions until student has been verbally recognized
  2. Verbally recognize students when they buzz-in on toss-up questions
  3. Identify students bay announcing the team letter (A or B) and participant ID (1, captain, 2, 3), i.e., "A-3" or "B-captain" and then hit the reset button
  4. Do no wait to reset the buzzers -- please reset as soon as the student is verbally recognized

 

Challenges

  1. Request that the clock be stopped during challenges
  2. At the National Finals, all challenges must be sent to the Appeals Room

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf
What does a rules judge do?

Minimum requirements (combined with science judge, above)

  1. Know and understand all of the competition rules
  2. Be able to enforce the rules in a competition setting
  3. Be comfortable standing as needed during competitions
  4. Be at least a senior in high school (depending on maturity)

 

Responsibilities

  1. Stand if front of room facing audience
  2. Ensure that the rules are followed
  3. Ensure that no one signals/communicates with competitors during a match 

 

Warnings

  1. If a rule is broken, enforce the penalty right away -- please do not give a warning
  2. Collect all used scratch papers
  3. Collect at the beginning of the match, at the half, and at the conclusion
  4. Ensure that the clock starts and stops at the appropriate times
  5. The clock should be stopped during discussions between officials, and between officials and students

 

Electronic devices

  1. No one in the room is permitted to use any electronic devices
  2. No one in the room may write anything during the matches
  3. Exception: coaches may mark score sheets, if provided

 

Challenge?

  1. Ask the timekeeper to stop the clock. 

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf
What does a timekeeper do?

Minimum requirements

  1. Know and understand the timing rules
  2. Be able to focus on timing in a competition setting
  3. Be at least a junior in high school

 

The basics

  1. It is very important to focus on the time -- NOT the game -- and whether a question is a toss-up or a bonus
  2. At the regional events, one match is composed of two eight-minute halves, with a two-minute break
  3. At the National Finals, one match is composed of two ten-minute halves, with a two-minute break

 

To begin

  1. The timekeeper starts the game clock when the moderator begins reading the first question
  2. Begin timing as soon as the moderator finishes reading the questions

 

 

Students have 5 SECONDS to buzz-in to answer a toss-up question after it has been completely read

  1. After 5 SECONDS, announce "TIME!"
  2. If the first team answers incorrectly, the second team has five seconds to buzz-in after the moderator says, "not correct"

 

 

Students have 20 SECONDS to answer a bonus question

  1. After 15 seconds, announce "5 SECONDS"
  2. After 20 seconds have elapsed, announce "TIME!"

 

If there is a challenge, stop the clock

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf
What does a scorekeeper do?

Minimum requirements

  1. Be able to perform basic math skills quickly and accurately
  2. Be able to focus on the scoring in a competition setting
  3. Be comfortable standing as needed during competitions
  4. Be at least in eighth grade (depending on maturity)

 

At the start of the match

  1. Complete the required information on the score sheets (team names)
  2. Understand where to place points -- use a cumulative tally

 

Scoring 

  1. Toss up questions = 4 points
  2. Toss up penalty = 4 points
  3. Bonus questions = 10 points
  4. Bonus penalty = 10 points 

 

Interrupts

If a competitor interrupts the moderator while a question is being read, and if the competitor answers incorrectly then the opposing team 

  1. is awarded 4 points
  2. has the question reread
  3. has a chance to answer the toss up question, if still eligible (for an additional 4 points)
  4. if the toss-up is correct, has a chance to answer the bonus question (for an additional 10 points)

 

Blurts

If a competitor buzzes in and answers before being recognized (a BLURT), then the opposing team

  1. is awarded 4 points (Note: if there is a blurt AND and interrupt, there is only ONE 4-point penalty)
  2. has a chance to answer the toss up question, if still eligible (for an additional 4 points)
  3. if the toss-up is correct, has a chance to answer the bonus question (for an additional 10 points)

 

At halftime

  1. announce the scores

 

VERY IMPORTANT at end of game

  1. Announce the final scores
  2. Please have someone in the room upload a photo of the signed score sheet
  3. Deliver signed score sheets to Schruben OR New Yew Lounge if a runner does not collect them. 
  4. Please do not leave signed score sheets in the room; please deliver them to Schruben or New Yew Lounge. 

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf
What does a runner do?

Minimum requirements

  1. Be familiar with the competition structure
  2. Follow the timing of the round
  3. Be comfortable standing as needed during competitions
  4. Be at least a senior in high school 

 

The basics

  1. Be prepared to keep score or act as timekeeper if possible
  2. Pick up question sets from Command Central at the beginning of each round
  3. Return questions and completed score sheets to Command Central and exchange for next round of questions

 

To begin

  1. Shut competition room door prior to the start of each half -- as teams are testing buzzers
  2. Stand be the closed door to eliminate spectators from entering during each half (exception: photographer and science bowl staff, identified by jackets
  3. Open door at the half and again at the end of each round
  4. Bring bottled water to workers in your room (including yourself as needed

               -Available at command central

  1. Help reset the competition room when you are done for the day

               -Instructions are in the tote pocket

 

Want this info to go?

  1. Download the pdf