Frequently Asked Questions

From zFairs Contest Management

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you prevent duplicate accounts?

To prevent users from creating multiple accounts we do a check and make sure that their name and email don't already exist in our system. If we already have there name and email in our system then we force them to login thus preventing them from creating a duplicate account.

How do you recover your forgotten Password Or Username?

For information on recovering your password see: Recovering Password

How do I update my profile information?

For information on updating your profile see: Update your Profile

Frequently Asked Questions for Admin Users:

Who can delete accounts?

Only Admin users can delete other admin users. Admin and Staff users can delete teacher, volunteer and staff accounts. Student/participant user accounts can be deleted by a staff or admin user or by the student's teacher.

Who can approve student paperwork/ISEF Forms?

Teachers can view their student's forms, however, only staff and admin users can approve paperwork/forms. There is a setting titled, "Only Allow staff members to approve paperwork". When this setting is turned on, only admin users can approve student paperwork/ISEF Forms. To turn this setting on/off, please go to "Staff Tools", "Fair Setup" and "Settings".

How do I know which judges are planning on judging at our current fair?

There is a report entitled "Judge's Details - Active" which only lists the judges who have recently registered or accessed their account. To access this report, go to "Staff Tools", "Reports" and click on the "Judge's Details - Active" report.

It keeps showing a banner at the bottom that says “your license has expired”

This is like the case when your license has expired and you are needing to renew or your first payment has not been processed.

What is Project/Entry’s plan? Is this the research plan?

It is a play where participants can provide an overview of their project plan; yes, this is also referenced as research plan.

What is Project/Entry’s description? Is this the abstract?

It is a place where participants can provide a description of their project. There is another option for abstract.

Who is required to sign the media release?

Your contest participants (students) are the owns we send the media release too.

We combine the media release with the Hold harmless release, should I break them out?

That is up to you, the system can only track it as one or the other, just remember that your text from your media release or hold harmless may apply to both.

Is there any way to hide the schedule temporarily?

Currently there is not.

Is the teacher address home or school address?

That is completely up to the teacher, and the instructions you provide.

Where did the list of MA schools come from? Are they public schools only?

This is a list of schools private and public; this list comes from a government database and may not be up to date.

What is Virtual Judging

Virtual judging is built on top of our online judging. Virtual judging is where we connect judges and participants (students) in a web conference. Our virtual judging allows you to have face to face interviews while being remote. We handle all of the hassle of connecting judges and participants. During our virtual judging judges have access to their score sheet and project information, including shared files, images, responses, and more.

Can we create custom wording and put anything we want into the judges’ registration form? We have some very specific things we ask them in order to place them with the right student.

Yes, for all registration types we have custom questions that allow you to ask anything you want.

We always have a judges’ orientation right before the fair. Is it possible to have 115 or fewer judges in a room with Alison Ament talking in real time about what they are about to do? (Judges always have some questions.)

We are all very excited about having the ability to see which judges have checked in or not, having the ability to see who is with a judge or not so there won’t be any interruptions, as well as showing the priority list so judges go to the top of the list and pick the student who has had the least judges so far.

Just to confirm, judges can look at all of their score cards at the end of their judging and they can change scores in order to rank them properly.

Yes, judges can see their scorecards, and even make changes until judging is closed.

If a judge does not want to go back and look at subcategories, can he or she simply change the final score? Or is the final score determined by the subcategories and cannot be changed by a judge?

If we simply had subcategories that gave weight to each category, could the judge enter their final score as the only piece of input to the program?

I assume that you have directions/instructions/tutorials on how to navigate the site? Or, do we have to create the directions for our judges ourselves?

We have a video and some documentation on how to use the site and what judges will need to do. It may be wise to adapt this to the needs and flow of your contest.

Would it be possible for someone to become a test student and test out his or her ability to register and test out my ability to see things?

Yes, as part of the set up process, we recommend you register fake accounts for students, judges, and teachers so you can understand the process and adjust it to how you need it to flow and what information you need to gather.

How do the judges’ comments come to us to edit? Do teachers simply go online and can they sort by teacher name or at least by grade?

Judges feedback can be viewed and edited by a staff member, they are given a list of feedback that needs to be reviewed so that they don't have to keep track of where they are. Once you are ready feedback can be email out to student and you can choose to copy teachers and parents.

Do you have a questionnaire or a rep who asks me who gets access to what in this program and what to put in each custom portion (judge and student registration, instructions for scoring, etc.)? Or is this something I do as an administrator of the fair just walking through the site?

This is something you will easily be able to manage, you can have your staff register as volunteers, teachers, or judges and then you can promote them to the different roles. (Staff, Judge, Teacher, Volunteer)

Our fair is broken into two parallel parts. One part is grades 7 and 8 and one part is grades 9 through 12. So we have approximately 90 projects in the middle school and 90-100 (max) in the upper school. Does this mean I need to buy 2 zFair packages for the year instead of one? Is there any discount for a single school buying two packages?

If the same people are running both the Jr and Sr parts and they happen on the same dates then you just need one license.

We’d like to know how we can download the judging data so our own computer program can run and normalize the scores.

You can download judging results and see the score each judge gave to each project, from this you can put this into your own program if you don't wish to use our algorithms.

Is it possible to change who has access throughout the day and what they have access to? I don’t mind letting teachers get into the student profiles and the judging rooms for chaperoning, but we absolutely do not want teachers to be able to see scores or comments.

Teachers don't have access to score sheets or feedback until you send that out and only if you copy the teacher on that release.

To confirm, you said nothing will be “published” until we’ve had a chance to assess the winners you send us and make sure it makes sense compared to our program. Correct?

Yes, you can set a date and time when awards are made known on the site.

And the Virtual Showcase will not be “published” until teachers have a chance to look at photographs and descriptions. Correct?

Yes, you can turn it on or off as you wish.

Can we “close” the Showcase to students making last-minute changes after a certain date?

Yes, you can set a date at which changes can no longer be made to student accounts.

You mentioned something about having support the day of the fair. Certainly, we are hoping there’s no major glitch, but, for example, let’s say we start getting phone calls from judges who say they can’t log on, would there be support on a Thursday afternoon? Is there a point person I should be calling if we do have a problem? Or is that a higher-level package? And if so, what would that cost be for the middle school and the high school being run at the same time?

Phone support like you are describing is part of the ultimate package. For your example of judges not being able to sign in that is an issue you will be able to handle without us.

How do you set the contact person on the Contact Us page?

Click on the staff menu item, then click on fair/contest setup, then click on general, update contact info, and then save.

Why do some projects no longer have a category code?

The most common reason for this is if an administrator deletes the code that the project(s) in question were using. Those will have to be manually changed to a different category for the code to show up.