Author Topic: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support  (Read 9532 times)

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #15 on: April 25, 2011, 11:44:37 AM »
Put me on the list of people uncomfortable with paying judges, however I am very comfortable with supplying more food, throwing an after party, finding places for out-of-towners to sleep, etc.  There can be perks without there being cash changing hands.

As for the exam, here is the statement from the BJCP website http://www.bjcp.org/index.php
Quote
April 2011
#
New Exam Program Announced

The BJCP Board, with full support of the Exam Directors, unaminously approved a new structure for the BJCP Exam Program. The key feature of the new program is a new introductory exam, which will allow new members to quickly become qualified as judges. Changes to existing exams will also be made. Full details are in the approved proposal.

The current program remains in effect until the new exam question pool is complete, and the new format field tested. We expect this project to take at least until the end of 2011 to finish, but it has advanced far enough to be formally announced. More information will be released as the project completes internal milestones.

This is an informational announcement only. Current and prospective judges should continue interacting with the exam program under existing rules and procedures until the new program is formally launched.

Here is a link to the proposed new structure the BJCP is working on.
http://www.bjcp.org/docs/newexam.pdf

In short:
There will be web based introductory exam that you have to pass before you can take the tasting, and unlimited numbers of people can take that exam.
The tasting will be 6 beers instead of 4, with no limits on how many can take this tasting exam.  This new tasting exam will replace all tasting exams.
Your rank is determined by your tasting score alone for apprentice, recognized or certified only.
If you have a national score on the tasting and enough experience points, you are allowed to register to take the full written exam.

This will really reduce the grading load and get more judges in the pool.  The 6 beer exam also gives the graders a better look at a person's judging skills.

I think this will be a big improvement, and I'm really glad the BJCP is moving in this direction.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline udubdawg

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #16 on: April 25, 2011, 11:55:42 AM »
I must say that I definitely support compensating proctors to come to your town to administer an exam if none are nearby.

Not to go off on too much of a tangent, but I like the changes to the BJCP exam coming up.  Online exam to show you have some proficiency.  Then a significant tasting test to become a Recognized/Certified judge.  And finally a big sit-down test to get to that top 10% or so of judges.  Makes a lot of sense, and I applaud the changes.  
Now if only they had style guidelines available during the tasting exam.  But that's another topic...

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #17 on: April 25, 2011, 12:12:07 PM »
Put me on the list of people uncomfortable with paying judges, however I am very comfortable with supplying more food, throwing an after party, finding places for out-of-towners to sleep, etc.  There can be perks without there being cash changing hands.

As for the exam, here is the statement from the BJCP website http://www.bjcp.org/index.php
Quote
April 2011
#
New Exam Program Announced

The BJCP Board, with full support of the Exam Directors, unaminously approved a new structure for the BJCP Exam Program. The key feature of the new program is a new introductory exam, which will allow new members to quickly become qualified as judges. Changes to existing exams will also be made. Full details are in the approved proposal.

The current program remains in effect until the new exam question pool is complete, and the new format field tested. We expect this project to take at least until the end of 2011 to finish, but it has advanced far enough to be formally announced. More information will be released as the project completes internal milestones.

This is an informational announcement only. Current and prospective judges should continue interacting with the exam program under existing rules and procedures until the new program is formally launched.

Here is a link to the proposed new structure the BJCP is working on.
http://www.bjcp.org/docs/newexam.pdf

In short:
There will be web based introductory exam that you have to pass before you can take the tasting, and unlimited numbers of people can take that exam.
The tasting will be 6 beers instead of 4, with no limits on how many can take this tasting exam.  This new tasting exam will replace all tasting exams.
Your rank is determined by your tasting score alone for apprentice, recognized or certified only.
If you have a national score on the tasting and enough experience points, you are allowed to register to take the full written exam.

This will really reduce the grading load and get more judges in the pool.  The 6 beer exam also gives the graders a better look at a person's judging skills.

I think this will be a big improvement, and I'm really glad the BJCP is moving in this direction.

I agree w/ what you said about food/rides/places to stay/etc. 


As for the exam.  Those changes could seriously impact my exam.  The November 2011 exam around here is currently full (I'm on the waiting list), but if I can't get in there, I plan to test in Portland in February. 

Will changes be made to the exam structure between November & February?  What type of impact could this have on any BJCP Exam classes?  I'm signed up for the one in Issaquah starting in August. 
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #18 on: April 25, 2011, 12:17:28 PM »
I don't know when the changes will actually take effect, it depends on how quickly it all gets done and tested.  There might be enough critical mass to get it all done by the first of the year, but you never know for sure.

You'll want to take the class anyway, it will really help with the tasting exam.  Talk to Steve if you have any concerns, he knows about the new exam plans.
Tom Schmidlin

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #19 on: April 25, 2011, 12:24:36 PM »
I don't know when the changes will actually take effect, it depends on how quickly it all gets done and tested.  There might be enough critical mass to get it all done by the first of the year, but you never know for sure.

You'll want to take the class anyway, it will really help with the tasting exam.  Talk to Steve if you have any concerns, he knows about the new exam plans.

Oh, I plan to.  In fact, I guess I'll just continue to plan for the existing exam.  That'll get me ready - and if this new exam shows up before I test, that'll be fine too - I'll still be ready.  :)   
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2011, 12:29:21 PM »
Exactly.  It's not like you don't still need to know the material for the new exam.  It's still an exam, not a formality.
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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #21 on: April 25, 2011, 01:00:32 PM »
The term 'paying' shouldn't be the operative term here.  There is no way that a competition could pay what it takes in terms of time and travel expenses.  Defraying the very real costs for judges to participate is hardly what I would call paying.  But, hopefully the reimbursement of those expenses will help a judge decide that they are valued at the contest.  Its the out of towners that need the incentive, not folks like me that drove 15 miles.  It really cost them something and I appreciate that they were willing to help out.

Drew, I am totally confused as to why you would have a problem with being paid.  The competition is paying, not the person who's beer is in front of you.  (OK, they really are with their entry fee, but they don't know you from Pete!)  I too would have a problem with payment if someone was tapping me on the shoulder and slipping me a fiver for placing their beer.  Fortunately the way we run competitions, there is no way a judge or contestant could know whose beer we're judging at any time.  Only after the smoke clears and the winners are announced!  The Brewer's Cup competition paid me $100 as an out of town judge 2 years ago for traveling over 100 miles to attend all sessions.  I don't feel violated nor do I feel I was compromised.
 
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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #22 on: April 25, 2011, 01:06:58 PM »
Drew, I am totally confused as to why you would have a problem with being paid.  The competition is paying, not the person who's beer is in front of you.  (OK, they really are with their entry fee, but they don't know you from Pete!)  I too would have a problem with payment if someone was tapping me on the shoulder and slipping me a fiver for placing their beer.
I don't think that's what he was saying.  It's not 'payola'.  However, instituting a program whereby judges who travel fartehr to be there to judge get 'paid' can be s slippery slope.  What happens if so many judges come from a distance that competition entry fees don't cover what you want to pay the judges.  Who pays them then? 

Good for you that you got paid that $100, but I don't think it should be something the Homebrewer's Association should pursue.  If they do, they'll have to have a grocery list of caveats & exemptions, etc. 
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Offline hgulbransen

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #23 on: April 25, 2011, 01:11:17 PM »
As I read this thread it appears to me the real issue is that for some regions 750 entries is simply too many to handle.  With fewer entries, the accute need for more qualified judges goes down.  If the cap is lowered then there will need to be additional regions added to take up the slack, but this is costly.  One comment about the cost analysis of the NHC was flawed in that most regions actually cost the the AHA more like $2,000 - $2,400.  there was also no mention in the analysis of the costs for the second round of judging as well as the costs to mail out prizes and a significant number of certificates.  Believe me, at $9.00 an entry, the AHA is not making any money.  the entry fee was raised 2 years ago just to hit the break even point.

As chairman of the AHA's competition subcommittee I promise you we will discuss all the points raised by the membership.  Please understand this is not a money making proposition for the AHA, it should be viewed as a service the AHA and the enormous number of volunteers who work the NHC provide the membership.  We are listening, but there are some very real problems that arise in this competition [due to it's unprecidented size] that are not seen in other competitions.  We're not going to please everyone, but we are trying.  This is uncharted water remember, who ever heard of a homebrew competition with something like 7,000 entries??

Keep the ideas coming,
Harold Gulbransen
AHA Gov Comm Competition subcommittee

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #24 on: April 25, 2011, 01:18:36 PM »
Perhaps a possible solution would be to limit the number of entries that can be received per region.  Basically, you'd have to register online somewhere before sending your entries in - to make sure you get in before the cutoff. 

Then, those who don't make it in time could try submitting their entries to a different judging region - one that, perhaps, has more judges to handle the higher volume of beers to be judged.

I'm just thinkin' out loud...
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #25 on: April 25, 2011, 01:27:34 PM »
Perhaps a possible solution would be to limit the number of entries that can be received per region.  Basically, you'd have to register online somewhere before sending your entries in - to make sure you get in before the cutoff.  

Then, those who don't make it in time could try submitting their entries to a different judging region - one that, perhaps, has more judges to handle the higher volume of beers to be judged.

I'm just thinkin' out loud...
You realize that is exactly what was done this year, right?  Each region was capped at 750 entries.

There may be the possibility of having different limits in different regions depending on the local judge pool, but that is another layer of complexity and potential problems.
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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #26 on: April 25, 2011, 01:32:16 PM »
There may be the possibility of having different limits in different regions depending on the local judge pool, but that is another layer of complexity and potential problems.

As I've said before, expect the PNW to fill up really quick next year if the rules are kept the same way.
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Offline dbeechum

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #27 on: April 25, 2011, 01:34:09 PM »
Drew, I am totally confused as to why you would have a problem with being paid. 

Actually, my objection has always centered around the haves of the competition world getting a leg up on the smaller poorer comps. Aka - building up the whole idea "why should I judge some place that can't offer me anything"
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Offline udubdawg

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #28 on: April 25, 2011, 01:47:40 PM »
As I read this thread it appears to me the real issue is that for some regions 750 entries is simply too many to handle.  


I have no doubt that this is true in some cases.  In DFW's case they can clearly judge 1800 Bluebonnet Brew-off beers so I assume they were just burnt out after that.

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Re: National Homebrewing Competition Fees and Support
« Reply #29 on: April 25, 2011, 02:41:11 PM »
What about raising the entry fee for all entries over a certain limit?  That might help offset high numbers of entries.