So You Want To Be A Quilt Judge…
Registration for a new intake of those interested in quilt judging opens again this fall. Over the years questions are posed via email or in casual conversation at guild gatherings and shows asking what the programme entails and how one may gain full certification.
The programme is open to any and all who have a passion for quilting, especially those who have a strong commitment to educating peers and who are striving for excellence. The CQA/ACC Quilt Judge Certification Programme (QJCP) was first introduced in 2009 during Quilt Saskatchewan. It has since been refined and further developed to provide committed candidates enrolling in the programme full certification with a professional designation as a CQA/ACC Certified Quilt Judge.
The interested candidate is sure to embark on a journey of intense learning to develop and hone one’s critiquing skills. There is no specific pre-requisite for quilters to register, however, it is expected that a future judge has a well-rounded background in traditional and innovative quilting with knowledge in colour and design. To establish a baseline for all registrants pre-course work is dispatched at the time of registration. It must be completed and submitted for review to the instructors prior to arriving in class for Part I.
Part I is presented every other year at a Quilt Canada Conference to a maximum of 16 students. Three intense days in class are augmented with daily homework exercises to be completed in the evening following the participant’s time in class. Each day is filled with practical exercises based on the pre-course work to further deepen knowledge in quilting and design. The instructors model professional conduct, deliver lectures, lead discussions and continually observe each student’s performance when participating in the practical exercises during the first two days. Day 3 is filled with mock judging experiences involving all students. Individual feedback is provided during the lunch hour. Based on each participant’s individual performance a candidate will be “recommended”, “conditionally recommended” or “not recommended” for Part II.
Successful Part I candidates assume Apprentice Judge status. She/he has up to five (5) years to gain judging experience as outlined in the QJCP manual to fulfill the requirements in qualifying for the Part III practical examination.
The Part III examination will be conducted as a mock judging event with quilts in the NJS. Twelve (12) entries will be selected for judging. Each candidate has sixty (60) minutes to judge the individual items and a further thirty (30) minutes to collaborate with fellow judge(s) in selecting winners in two categories.This mock judging event will be observed and evaluated by the QJCP instructors who assess each candidate’s knowledge base, their proficiency and ability to formulate constructive critiques. Upon successful completion of Part III the Apprentice becomes a CQA/ACC Certified Quilt Judge.
Maintaining Certified Judge status will require the individual’s continued professional development. This may include teaching and/or participating in workshops as well as active judging duties. With certification comes the responsibility of maintaining professional standards in judging by providing consistent constructive critiques that educate and expand the entrant’s knowledge.
________________________________Submitted by Anna Hergert