Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
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Digital vs. Paper notebooks 5pt


18000B
3-Oct-2021

I am an event partner who just hosted a tournament this weekend. At the event no team submitted a digital copy of their journal. Why has the rubric been changed to take a bonus for bound journals and being given to teams with digital journals? I understand the impact of time stamping for virtual events? Why not have it worded as to include time stamp for digital and bound for paper copies?

The advantage is being given to teams who utilize digital and a 5 point spread can be negatively a HUGE spread if tournaments except both forms of journals.

At this event, it was not an issue, but what about signature events and/or World's?

My teams are attending a signature event at the end of the month, should they take both forms?

Answered by Competition Judging Committee

In the updated Judge Guide, the wording for the 5 point bonus in the Engineering Notebook rubric is as follows:

"Five (5) points if the notebook has appropriate evidence that documentation was done in sequence with the design process. Examples of this would include signed and dated entries in a bound notebook, or time stamps generated by digital collaboration platforms. "

This season, Event Partners will decide whether they are going to be asking for physical notebooks, or digitally submitted notebooks. The adjustment to the rubric was to give judges the ability to award the 5 point bonus to all notebooks who meet this criteria, not just teams that have a bound notebook. One form of notebook does not have any inherent advantage over the other.

Additional information from the Judge Guide: The 5-point bonus for having a bound notebook has been removed and replaced with a 5-point bonus for submissions of paper, printed, or digital submissions containing evidence that documentation was done in sequence with the design process. This change to the rubric is meant to allow judges to award the 5-point bonus for submissions that provided appropriate evidence of sequential work irrespective of the notebook submission format.

Examples of this would include signed and dated entries in a bound notebook, or time stamps generated by digital collaboration platforms. The Judge Advisor will use reasonable discretion to determine whether evidence is sufficient to warrant the bonus, and will apply that standard consistently to all submissions at the event. When there is doubt or question regarding evidence, the benefit of doubt should be given to the team.

The overall goal of this change to the rubric was to allow natively digital and natively physical notebooks to be evaluated equitably. This season will see some Event Partners ask for digitally submitted notebooks - some of which will be natively digital, and teams with physical notebooks will need to be scanned or uploaded. Alternatively, some events will still call for physical notebooks - and teams with natively digital notebooks will need to print out a physical copy. In all of these circumstances, the new rubric allows Judging to be done to all teams at an event with an equitable standard and a common rubric.