Information for Judges

For more than 30 years, the Jacobs School of Engineering is looking to recruit engineering alumni & friends who are dedicated to graduate research and professional development. Year after year, our volunteer judges contribute to the consistent success of this signature event by giving of their time and energy to meet with and evaluate a small segment of students presenting research.

The Expo is an opportunity to showcase outstanding student research for our M.S. and PhD. students in all six of our engineering departments. It continues to be one of the most compelling opportunities to get connected with the excellent research by Jacobs School graduate students while placing them in an atmosphere to facilitate exchanges between other students, faculty, alumni, administration and the public.

The Role of our Judges

If you're considering the volunteer judge position for the first time or you're one of our returning participants – welcome! We are excited as you are to see what the students will have to present this year. Please review the following information to have a better sense of our judges time commitment in advance and on the day of the Expo.

  1. Registration is required - if you have not received an access link to register please submit a request HERE. All Judges must meet a minimum set of criteria to participate in a volunteer role. Criteria is either a) hold a PhD in Engineering or b) hold a bachelor's degree in engineering and minimum 10 years relatable industry experience.
  2. Each judge is assigned 5-8 student posters to review
  3. Within 10 days of the Expo, direct email communication will be sent regarding your student assignments with a link to access the individual poster abstracts online. We ask our judges preview the abstracts online in advance of their arrival the day of the event
  4. On the day of the Expo, judges will visit each of their assigned posters to view and interact with the student presenter

The Judging Process

Student poster presentations will be evaluated on four major criteria (see Judging form) related to the students' ability to clearly communicate the significance of their work:

  • Student's oral presentation is well-prepared, concise, and provides a good synopsis of the significance of the research, results, and possible future applications (opening statement approx. 2 minutes).
  • Student's response to questions show insightful knowledge and contributes to understanding of the research.
  • Poster is well organized and visually appealing.
  • Poster communicates significance and relevance of results.

Our students often tell us that the interaction with their assigned poster judge, has changed the way they think about their project while providing new and helpful prospective. Feedback from each individual judge on their assigned posters also helps to determine the recipient of the Departmental Best Poster prize, presented to one student representing each of our six departments. One lucky departmental prize student will receive the Expo's highest award recognition, The Rudee Outstanding Poster Award, named in honor of the Jacobs School founding Dean Lea Rudee. We like to end our Expo by recognizing the award winners at the Award and Reception Ceremony which is open to all participating judges to attend.

Judge's Schedule

Thursday, April 14, 2016

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

Park / Shuttle / Registration

12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Lunch / Judges Briefing

1:30 pm - 2:30 pm

Poster Judging

In addition to the time commitment above, we invite you to participate in
all of the day's events including faculty talks and networking reception.

2:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Faculty Technical Talks / Poster Viewing

4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Awards and Reception

The Research Expo fee is waived for our judges. Please complete your registration to confirm your availability to serve as a poster judge by Friday, Friday, April 1, 2016. A confirmation of your Judge's registration will arrive within 24 hours and please check your email regularly for additional details on the Expo as we approach the event date.


Please contact Auntwanette White, Executive Assistant at (858) 534-0007 or

Click here to read about the recipient of the 2015 Rudee Outstanding Poster award and other extraordinary research that appear at last year's event!

Contact:   (858) 534-6068