Learn all about volunteering as a Virtual Judge this year in our 2021 Judging Brochure!
Thank you for serving as a volunteer Judge for the Chicago Metro History Fair Regional Contest for 2021! This Virtual Judging page contains instructions specific to the 2021 VIRTUAL History Fair season. If you are looking for general information about volunteering as a CMHF judge, visit our Judging page.
Registering to Judge
Registering as a virtual judge is a simple process with zFairs! First, visit our CMHF zFairs contest page. From there, simply click “Create Account” and select “Judge” to begin. Full instructions can be found on the “Judge’s Home” section of the zFairs page as well as lower down on this page.
LIVE and OFFLINE Judging Options
You may sign up for one or more judging sessions in zFairs as part of the account creation process. Please remember that both types of judging sessions are 100% virtual, not in-person.
LIVE judging sessions take place via Zoom on Saturday mornings. Attend a live webinar orientation, view your assigned projects, consult with your fellow judge(s), and return your evaluations to CMHF all in one day. Multiple Saturday dates available!
OFFLINE judging sessions take place over several days. We send an orientation video and instructions to access your assigned projects to you via email. View your assigned projects and consult with your fellow judge(s) as you are able, then submit to CMHF by the due date. Multiple sessions available!
All five categories and multiple dates are available for each type of experience!
- LIVE Senior Suburban (February 27, 9:00AM – 12:30PM)
- LIVE Senior City (March 6, 9:00AM – 12:30PM)
- LIVE Juniors (March 20, 9:00AM – 12:30 PM)
- LIVE Senior Finals (March 27, 9:00AM – 12:30PM) – experienced judges only, please
- OFFLINE Senior Suburban (receive projects by Feb. 24. Evaluations due by March 2)
- OFFLINE Senior City (receive projects by March 3. Evaluations due by March 9)
- OFFLINE Juniors (receive projects by March 17. Evaluations due by March 23)
- OFFLINE Senior Finals (receive project by March 24. Evaluations due by March 30)
You may sign up for one session, or as many as you wish. Please only select the contest(s) you can commit to judge.
Detailed Registration Instructions
- Click “Create Account” and select “Judge” in the menu at the top of the zFairs contest page.
- Follow the prompts to complete your judge registration.
- A mailing address is required so that we can send you thank-you gifts. If you would rather not receive any mail, simply enter “n/a” for your address.
- It is very important that you remember your username and password! You will need these to log in during the contest and view your projects.
- You will have the option to select your project category preferences. All project categories are available to judge at all judging sessions. We will do our best to honor your request! You may also leave these preferences blank if you do not have a category preference.
- You may then select your desired judging sessions. You may select as many as you wish, but please only select those sessions you can commit to judge!
- Please make a note of the session(s) you select during registration.
You should receive a follow-up email from the zFairs system confirming your registration. At that point, your registration is complete! You will receive further instructions in emails sent through zFairs, so it is important that you receive the confirmation email when your registration is complete.
Virtual Judge FAQs
What is zFairs?
New for 2021, all CMHF judging will take place through the zFairs Contest Management System. Once you create your Judge account in the system, zFairs provides one site where you can view your assigned projects, evaluate them online, confer with your judging team, and submit your evaluations all in one convenient site. Using zFairs will also greatly reduce the number of steps required for students who advance to State and National competition.
What about State and Nationals?
If you would like to participate as a judge at the State or National contest levels, zFairs makes it easy to do so! Instructions to register as a state or national judge will be available closer to the contest dates.
Why didn’t I receive an invitation to judge?
We are rolling out our judge invitations gradually and you may receive your invitation over the coming weeks. You are welcome to register as a judge using the steps above at any time.
How will I evaluate projects in zFairs?
Much more information on this is coming, including tutorial guides and video walkthroughs! A full orientation will also be included as a part of each judging session, and CMHF staff are always available to help.