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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2003 10:45 pm 
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Every time I read one of these threads I am amazed at how ignorant most of the posting population here is of the judging process and simple mathematics. I am also disheartened by the fact that your directors have mislead you into believing that your number from one show to the next will ALWAYS be relevant, and that you can expect anyone else to be able to measure your own group's improvement better than you can.

The judges job is to 1) Rank, 2) Rate, and 3) Evaluate (in that order) each performance based on the extent to which it meets the criteria listed for each caption. The judge's job is not to insure that your numbers satisfy your ego or encourage self esteem - that is your director's job to interpret this information as it applies to a particular event or to your group's progress. It would seem natural for your scores to go up as the season goes on, and for many groups, that is exactly what happens. A more precise determination of your progress, however, would be to examine the criteria that each judge has highlighted (yes, that's a requirement for each SCSBOA judge) on the back of your score sheets. You should see a progression upward from show to show.

Unfortunately, many directors completely ignore this fact and, rather than isolating elements of their program that are indicated as needing improvement, will focus only on the numbers as their indicators of progress. This is very foolish indeed.

Someone threw out the suggestion of giving all bands a score no lower than an 80. Imagine your typical 24 band tournament. Your top band isn't going to score a 100 (ok, in your dreams they might), so let's say, a 98 is the best score. Well folks, that only leaves 18 other numbers to be shared by 23 bands. Yes, you can go down to tenths and hundreds, as some scores now do, but to try to fit all of those bands into that small of a range, and considering that their are 3 - 6 SETS of numbers that must be added up to create the total score, you're asking for a level of mathematical wizardry that will never happen in the 2 minutes the judge has to determine a number. You must utilize a wide range of points to properly rank a large amount of bands. This predicament also explains why larger tournaments generally produce a wider range of scores.

Finally, to the guy who got the same "persussion" judge for 4 shows in a row (and that is a lot - dunno what the odds are on that, but I bet it has to do with the region your shows tend to be in) - if the guy liked your show, but your scores didn't go up at some point, and a line who scored lower at a previous show finally scored higher, guess what? Your show didn't improve (in the long run) as much as theirs did. Does that seem a little weird to you?

Last word here - at any judged or officiated contest - whether it's a ball game, a talent show, or a field tournament, there's always gonna be a large percent of the audience (usually 45 - 50%) who doesn't agree with the umpire, referee, or judge's decision, and doesn't think he/she saw things the right way. You know what, sometimes those people are right, and most times they're wrong, but that's how the game is played.

Be a good sport and stop arguing that the umpire's blind when the game's already over.


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 Post subject: Teever said it best...
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2003 11:21 pm 
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Teever has his act together as a judge and a music educator. He has again done a very fine job explaining what directors should be explaining to their charges.

During my 30 years of being a band director, I took the time to explain in detail the judging (evaluation) process to all of my students, staff and parents. This included field, street, and festival adjudication. Packets containing samples of the various sheets, explaination of terms, etc. were given not only to students but to their parents. After many years of covering this topic with my groups, I rarely had to explain the process, the terms, or the scores. An educated group of people rarely takes on a mob mentality...

My bands and color guards took every comment by every judge as gospel and would try to correct or fix every detail and suggestion.

Regarding the entire adjudication process, communicaton from the directors to their students, staff, and parents would take care of a great deal of the complaining and bewilderment.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:22 am 
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I would like to apologize to anyone I may have upset. My comments were inappropriate and immature. Venting frustrations over the Internet is not the way to handle things. I am very happy with SCSBOA and will continue to support our association.


Thank You. :lol:


Last edited by royalbraz on Wed Nov 26, 2003 10:34 am, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 6:18 am 
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The judges will not all agree ALL the time. One might put you in 1st while another believes that you deserved 3rd. Two judges might see you in 2nd while one sees you in 8th. There's not much you can do about it. And the judges aren't out there to hurt your band, or make them feel horrible and that they did bad or anything. There's a reason why the make tapes and evaluate you. They're like a band dirctor except during a compeititon. If you listen to the tapes, they're helping you. Telling you why they scored you what they did. And if the tape and the score don't measure up to what you believe, go listen to other schools tapes. Be like, hey, can I listen to your tape because I believe we did better but you beat us. And then you'll probably see that jusy maybe, just maybe, they performed their show better then yours. And maybe it was in the judges best interest to put you guys in 8th. I dunno. But don't blame you heartache or hurting on the judges. They have it hard enough as it is. And I'm pretty sure the last thing they need is kids telling them what THEY did wrong and how THEY need to get fixed. Just give them a break.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 7:02 am 
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:lol:


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 Post subject: Fix Judging?
PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 8:38 am 
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I dont think a mere band student can answer that question. Merely because one is not informed. Of course scoring will vary from tournament to tournament regardless of improvement because there are different judges. We could all gripe about not getting the score that we want but thats still not answering the question. The only way to answer the question is to ask a so cal judge yourself. I guarantee you one wouldn't be able to answer. So I ask again "Fix Judging" bands go to tournaments so they can win and/or to figure out what they could improve on. If a judge scores you exceptionally low for a tournament don't get sad that you didnt win improve on what he says you need improving on and give the next judge no reason to score you low. Judging cant be fixed but bands can.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:01 pm 
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Without going back and reading the entire thread, has anyone mentioned judges training? If there is anything that can fix things, this would be one area that I would question first. If the judges are going to be consistent, the judges should be trained together. If there are big discrepancies when judges in the same caption judging the same group at the same time are more than one box apart, then there are problems. I would like to think each judge agrees on what a Box 1 through a Box 5 group/performance looks or sounds like. Obviously, this is not always the case. However, it should be the case most of the time. When this doesn't occur, that is when there are inconsistencies of the scores from tournament to tournament (i.e. a group that should be score higher than another doesn't when the two groups attend different tournaments). I'm not discounting the fact that ranking is the most important assignment that a judge has, but now that SCSBOA uses qualifying scores, the numbers really do play an important part. Now, I could respond to other aspects of judging, but please note that I am only addressing two basic issues...1) judges training should be used to make judging more consistent, and 2) numbers do count when used for qualification, so it is crucial that numbers are as consistent as possible.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 9:08 pm 
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Ed,
I agree with you wholeheartedly on the need for better/more judges training. It does go a long ways towards improving consistency. The problem here is that the SCSBOA cannot ever get everyone who adjudicates together at the same time, although some valiant efforts have been made in the past. Several years ago, the session at Los Altos HS which featured two bands performing to a crowd of judges with tapes and sheets in early September (gee, that wasn't intimidating for them) provided many of them the opportunity to get together afterwards and debate/decide on what the standards should be. We definitely need more of this.
In some judging associations, you cannot judge unless you have attended the training meetings, but this is not currently true for SCSBOA, and they are much more than soley a "judging" organization. The fact is, it has been difficult to find enough members to fully staff every event that they are requested to provide judges for (some panels have even been reduced just so a show can have some judges), so to eliminate anyone at this time would be problematic.

Still, your point that SCSBOA (or any organization) judging would be more consistent with more training is right on the money, and I hope the board will consider this before next year.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 10:09 pm 
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First off I am not arguing against they system but what if (I know most of you think it’s impossible) but what if there were some improprieties what recourse is there?

NONE

Does SCSBOA or WBA critique their judges say the way the NFL critiques their refs? If a problem occurred, is it documented with ways to improve? We are dealing with humans and I am sure every is above reproach but I have a hard time when there is a a great difference in the rank. 1-8 spread is too big IMHO I can see a 1-4 but 7 spots?

If a band gets a judge who is less trained than another then they will have to suffer for it?

And God forbid what about a judge with a predetermined bias against a Director? I am not saying this has happened but just asking a question

I think ED has hit the nail on the head. its like any other business training and having a way to track performance is a must. How can SCSBOA or WBA tell if their judges are doing a good job? Or if the training they are providing is accurate and useful if there are no measurements?

I may not know a thing about judging music but I do know something about setting standards and measuring to those standards. If indeed these exist in the current circuits then excuse my ignorance.
Again I am not trying to strat a war on judging. Its hard for some of us who are use to refs or umps who just make sure rules are followed and dont really determine the outcome (well most of the time Raiders vs Patriots) so just have some patience.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2003 12:11 pm 
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jacjar1 wrote:
Does SCSBOA or WBA critique their judges say the way the NFL critiques their refs? If a problem occurred, is it documented with ways to improve? We are dealing with humans and I am sure every is above reproach but I have a hard time when there is a a great difference in the rank. 1-8 spread is too big IMHO I can see a 1-4 but 7 spots?


Actually, SCSBOA has "green sheets" that directors can use to write comments and suggestions regarding a judge or the organization of an event. I have heard of directors "green sheeting" judges, but I have never heard of any judges being reprimanded for ineffective or improper judging. Has anyone heard of a SCSBOA judge being slapped on the wrist?

Going off on a slight tangent, why is it that the judge who has scored a group relatively low is always wrong? You never hear from anyone complaining that a judge scored their group too high. Just more food for thought.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2003 9:46 pm 
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Green sheets turned in for SCSBOA events are reviewed by the board and the information is sent to any adjudicator who receives one. In terms of recourse, I'm not exactly sure what you're looking for jacjar - recourse against a judge who scored you poorly, or recourse by an association to eliminate ineffective judges?

In the case of the latter, the SCSBOA did utilize a system of judge review for several years, in which every judge had to, at some point during the season, do double tapes and ncr sheets on several groups in a designated show. These were then reviewed by a panel or master judge (fuzzy on the details here, must be the tryptophan kicking in). When the board, or field steering committee, or vp of adjudication notices that someone is not working out well, they generally don't get assigned. However, as I noted in a previous post, there is a shortage of judges on some weekends, so the association may be hesitant to drop some completely out of the loop.

I do seem to remember at least one instance when several judges, or maybe a panel, was disciplined for some kind of poor example, but, again, don't recall the details. The association has removed individuals from the judges list on ocassion; sometimes by the judge's request.

It's a shame that more disgruntled directors don't take the time to fill out the green sheets. I've had to go and ask for a copy of the sheets and tape from some directors after hearing them complain, just to hear for myself if their beef was legit (it usually is). On the other hand, I've heard just as many outstanding tapes solocited from instructors who said they got a great one. I've found that while some people have better tape technique than others, that doesn't necessarily invalidate their application of numbers.

As for inproprieties, gimme a break! We're talking about a highly regarded group of professionals, who stand to lose a lot more than their credibility and dignity for fudging the numbers. It is, in fact, one of the strengths of a peer judging system - "I've gotta evaluate this guy's group fairly because he's gonna see my group next week". Too bad though, that such a small percent of the available music educators actually get on the pencil end of the sheet. They (and the system) would benefit much more than they think!


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2003 10:25 pm 
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BandAddict wrote:
A little harsh, aren't you? Not everyone is in here ALL the time keeping up on ALL discussions. Some people do have a life outside of band and this website.

Anyway, in regards to your comment, quote, "And for another matter, if you had the best show that you performed, what's it matter if a few people up in a press-box say matter? You shouldn't worry so much about the results,"

If we're not to care about what a few people up in a press box say....if they do not matter as you are implying, then what is the point of having tournaments? What is the point of having scores if it doesn't matter? What is the point of competing? That makes no sense. It's as if bands set themselves up for a big let down....you know, you go to the next one knowing you are better and , in fact, perform better but get a lower score -- equals let down. It is disheartening.




Would you prefer the judges check last week's scores, so that they make sure not to give your band a lower score? This makes absolutely no sense to me. The judge's main job is to rank, not to score. You simply cannot compare scores from 2 different shows, unless the same people judge every single show. The main reason to go to shows is to perform for an appreciative crowd, to get some feedback from other people who are involved in the activity (judges), and for fun. Would your season have been a better experience if your score had gone from 70 to 90 over the course of the season?

Get a clue.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2003 8:03 pm 
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BandAddict wrote:
Where I feel that it WOULD help is that UNLESS the band is really bad, you should try and keep the score above the 80. In the words of many out there such as Mr. T, scores don't matter, right? Therefore, give that band an 80.1 or better. Easy breezy. These are kids. They are looking at this differently than the organization is and the organization should bend their thinking in that direction. This is how the kids in band and the parents, friends and family members all view it: One organization, (one unit) that the band is a party to or signed up with, however you phrase it, and they compete in that organization's tournaments week to week by that organization's choice of judges. It is viewed simply and innocently that way and rightfully so. And being such, scores are expected to go up.......NOT PLACEMENT, mind you. I do not care if 89 wins Sweeps one week and the next week the same band gets 94 and places 6th. That's cool! All bands improve from week to week and the scores should reflect that.

And if a band has a low score from the week before, aren't I going to have an opinion about that band before they even play one note?

Nope....if you don't know what that other judges 80 means to that judge, then you don't have an opinion one way or the other. You just have a marker to go by to ensure a higher score, albeit, the score may be higher by .01 or maybe 1.3....just make sure it's higher (go by your marker.)

These are high school kids. Why are they being asked to "think about it this way" when it is a natural instinct to initially think that the scores go up as the weeks progress? .


Doesn't seem fair, somehow. We all have bad performances.

It is so rare that a band's performance goes down as the season goes on. It may stay the same or only incease by a hair but go down??? I don't think so.

Re judges who haven't worked with competing bands:

If you're good enough to become a judge, you work with a lot of bands, period. Should a judge be someone who never leaves their own band program?

At champions in SD, there was a judge there from another state, Texas, I believe. If you think there aren't people on the panel who are a bit bias, you are kiddin' yourself............welcome to the world of politics....it's everywhere you look nowadays!

SCSBOA already has a VERY firm policy in place regarding ethics in judging. I can't remember the exact policy, but there is a time frame in which you cannot judge a band you have worked with.

At some point we have to trust that people will do the right thing.


I really don't know what to say anymore at this point. All I know is the bottom line and that is this: A lot of the kids in these high school marching bands are so happy with themselves and their great performances but a part of them, small part for some, large part for others, is sad that they got a 93 one week and the next week they got an 89 and on the video it is obvious that their show was better. And the only answer we have for them is ......................well, you know the answer already. Need I repeat it?

Scoring matters.........heck, you don't get a metal without the highest score, right? Everyone wants that darn metal that everyone says is not really what is important.?????????????????? Arghhhhhhhhh!

[/quote]

It's NOT rare that a bands score will go down during the season. Arlington's score went down, Bellflower, La Puente, Glendora, even Hart's score went down. My god my bands score went down by 3.65 friggin points!!! Mira Mesa's scores went down, Murrieta Valley's, Carlsbad's... look at the score sheet for SCSBOA and you will find that it's not very rare for a bands score to go down. Some bands scores may go down and continue going down, but it's not the judges fault(s)! Just because you score an 80 at one competition, does not necessarily mean that you will score an 80 or higher at the next competition. Just because you've improved, does not necessarily mean your score will improve. Sure, it'd be nice if it did, but you must remember. Judges are also judging the improvement of the bands you are competiting against. Not only yours. So if you beat a band one week, and then they beat you the next, then maybe they just worked harder that week then you and managed to improve just enough. There's not much you can do about it except work harder and get better.

I'd rather go from 6th to 4th and have my score drop then get that metal. Cuz it felt good to know that my band worked hard enough to beat out those 2 other bands, even if our score went down, and even if it was just two bands. That told us right there that we improved. That our hard work paid off. Sure it wasn't what we were praying for, cuz like you said, everyone goes in hoping for 1st, but only one band can get it. And congratulations to them because they kick a**.

How do you know if judges are bias or not? How do you know if a judge goes in saying, oh I hate this band, last place for them. But then again how do I know they don't, right? Because this is the world of politics. No one knows for sure what goes on in those press boxes except for the judges themselves... and anyways, that's like a kid going to his mom and saying his grades are bad because the teacher hates him. Sure the judge might hate ya, but it's not his place to give your band a bad score just for that reason, just as your teacher's not gonna give ya a bad grade just because she hates ya.

If your whole season, your goal is to get that stupid metal, then man, ARGH to you! Your season should be based on being your best. Having the best shows. Beating out that band that you've wanted to beat for almost ever! Placing higher then you ever thought possible. Not some stupid metal. Scores are what get you that metal, placing is what brings a smile to a kids face at compeitions. For a band to get 3rd a comp and then 2nd at the next, they jump up and scream and are happy because they went up. and then they might get 1st at the next comp, and then they jump up and yell and smile and some even cry. Not because of the score, but because they beat out all of the bands they were going up against and they felt happy. And if this has happened to you, then you know what it's like. And if you don't, then this is the feeling you should be working for. But I'm pretty sure that every band out there knows what it's like to beat out another band and just feel great about it.

It's the judges jobs to give you these placings and to help you. If it were their job to make everyone feel all horrible, then I'm pretty sure there'd be more of a discussion. And mistakes happen, but life goes on.

If all you think about is the score you get, and you get all pissed off when it goes down. Then geez, don't sit here complaining about, if you care so much about it, then you better be doing something to bring it back up instead of saying that it was wrong for it to go down, or it should've happened.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2003 8:37 pm 
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and what about all the bands who aren't "metal" bands?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2003 10:32 am 
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BDinkel wrote:
BandAddict wrote:
A little harsh, aren't you? Not everyone is in here ALL the time keeping up on ALL discussions. Some people do have a life outside of band and this website.

Anyway, in regards to your comment, quote, "And for another matter, if you had the best show that you performed, what's it matter if a few people up in a press-box say matter? You shouldn't worry so much about the results,"

If we're not to care about what a few people up in a press box say....if they do not matter as you are implying, then what is the point of having tournaments? What is the point of having scores if it doesn't matter? What is the point of competing? That makes no sense. It's as if bands set themselves up for a big let down....you know, you go to the next one knowing you are better and , in fact, perform better but get a lower score -- equals let down. It is disheartening.




Would you prefer the judges check last week's scores, so that they make sure not to give your band a lower score? This makes absolutely no sense to me.

It makes sense to me. I HAVE NEVER SEEN A BAND NOT IMPROVE FROM WEEK TO WEEK....practice and critiquing the "rough" parts of the show from week to week ALWAYS brings improvement. It's a given. If a band got 80 one week, they should not get a score lower than that the followig week. It's called "consistency," a much needed tool in these competitions for the scores that you say "don't matter" yet without the best score, you go home medal-less..

The judge's main job is to rank, not to score.

Without "score" you cannot have "rank." Need I say more?

You simply cannot compare scores from 2 different shows, unless the same people judge every single show.

The same organization is judging the show. I know the organization thinks in its mind that that does not matter but obviously it does matter to many as there is so much controversy. Controversy is indicative of a real problem .

The main reason to go to shows is to perform for an appreciative crowd,

Then stop giving out numbers (scores)

to get some feedback from other people who are involved in the activity (judges), and for fun. Would your season have been a better experience if your score had gone from 70 to 90 over the course of the season?

I'm not in band. I tried to get in but they don't allow 40-year-olds in H.S. marching bands, darnit :D Anyway, what would make the season more "worthwhile" is if scoring fairly and accurately reflected improvement by showing an incline,not a decline. It's common sense to the human mind.......let's try and think outside the box, shall we?


Get a clue.
Funny, I was thinking of saying that to you. "Get a clue!" We will have to "Agree to Disagree." Thanks for sharing your thoughts and opinions..............


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