Category Judge User Manual

Thank you for your interest in volunteering as a Category Judge at the Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair (PRSEF).  The Carnegie Science Center and all of the PRSEF students appreciate your support as a judge. We couldn’t make this event happen without you! 

Category Judge Role

Category Judges will be assigned to a project category based on their indicated preferences, their experience and education and the need for judges in each category.  Examples of categories include: Junior (6th grade) Biological Sciences, Intermediate (7th and 8th grade) Chemistry, or Senior (9th-12th grade) Physics.  Category Judges will evaluate student projects in their assigned category and will award a 1st place, 2nd place, 3rd place and 4th place winner in that category. More than one 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place winner may be nominated depending upon the number of projects entered into the category.

On the day of the fair, Category Judges will use a combination of reviewing student abstracts, previewing project-related materials provided by the student(s) and interviewing students to judge the projects which have been assigned to them. Category judges will then caucus with the other judges in their category to choose the winners for their category.

PRSEF provides extensive training and guidance materials for judges.  You are encouraged to review these before the day of the fair.  Materials can be found at under the Judges and Volunteers tab.

Registering to be a Category Judge

If you already have an account at, log in and look for the Judge/Volunteer Registration widget on the right side of your screen. Select “Category Judge” and then click on the red “Register” button. Continue to the next step in the user manual – Complete your registration.

If you do not have an account at yet, you will need to create an account.  You can click on “Register to Be a Judge or Volunteer here” at or you can go directly to to create your account.

Enter your name and the email address you would like us to use to contact you with fair information. The email address you enter here will also be the username you will use to access the system in the future. Next choose your password.

From the “Registration Type” drop down menu, choose “Category Judge” and then click the “I’m not a robot” box.  Click on the red “Register” box to continue.

Complete your registration

On the registration page, you choose your preferred categories based on your areas of interest and experience. You can choose up to four categories and list them in your order of preference.  The judge assignment committee will endeavor to assign you to your top preferred category, but may need to assign you to another category where judges are lacking. We appreciate your flexibility in judging categories outside of your area of expertise if you are asked to do so.

You will see additional information fields like your area of expertise, education, address, phone number, and job title. 

Confirm your contact information then click on the red “Submit Registration” button.

You will receive a confirmation email from CSC STEMisphere at CSC STEMisphereInfo at STEMisphereInfo@CarnegieScienceCenter.Org. Check the email address you entered during registration. Please check your junk mail folder if you do not see this email.  All other fair information will come from the email address

Changing your information

If you need to change your email address or phone number,go to and log in. Make your corrections in the Update Information section and click on the red “Update” button.

Unregistering to judge

While we appreciate your volunteering to judge at the fair, we understand the sometimes plans change and you will not be able to participate as you originally intended. If you need to cancel your registration, go to and log in.  Scroll down to “UnRegister”, enter the reason you need to unregister and then click on the red “Unregister” button.   

Filling multiple roles If you are filling more than one role (Qualified Scientist and Category Judge for example), you will need to switch between profiles to access all of the applicable forms and functionality. To move between profiles, look to the horizontal menu bar just below the black and white speckled area of your screen. Click on “Registrations / Forms” and then on “Judge Registration” to access your Category Judge profile or click on “Manage Role Name Forms” to switch to a different role.