Herndon, Virginia, USA 20172 [email protected]

EPC Format & Rubrics

Event Format:

Compete in all 4 segments of EPC contests (Essay, Speech, Extemporaneous Speaking, and Information Campaign) and earn a GRAND Prize.

Grand Prize will be awarded to the best overall performing High School participant. Qualifying candidates must participate in all possible competitions (essay, speech, Extemporaneous Speaking, and Information Campaign).


Extemporaneous Speech Competition

WHAT:  The Extemporaneous Speaking competition will judge your ability to speak on a topic in an organized and poised manner with only a few minutes of preparation.

WHO: For now the competition is open for only middle school and high school students.

HOW: You will be given the exact prompt aligning with the EPC theme during the competition, and will have 30 minutes to prepare a 5 to 7 minute presentation based on your personal knowledge and optionally with references. If you decide to join this exciting competition, your speech will be graded on the basis of content and ideas, presentation and delivery, and precision of language. Your goal should be to prepare and present, not to memorize and recollect.

Essay and Speech Competition




Timing and breakout rooms

There will be at least 4 breakout rooms for the Zoom event. The number of breakout rooms may vary depending on the number of contestants in each level. In general, four breakout rooms include: 


*Middle School 

*High School 

*Poster and Multimedia

The speech times will remain at 3 to 8 minutes as below:

*3 min (Level 1); 

*4 min (Level 2); 

*5 min (Level 3); 

*6 min (Level 4); 

*7 min (Level 5); 

*8 min+ 2 min Q&A (Level 6)

Watch a sample video on how to prepare for the speech

A maximum of 2 minutes will be allowed in between speeches. TIMING SUMMARY: (a) speech: up to 3 or 8 minutes;

CAVEAT: The judge of each contest is the ultimate arbiter of time.

NOTE: At the end of each event, all breakout rooms will automatically close and everyone will be routed back to the main room. 



*The Zoom chat window should not be used for non-EPC related matter.

*Just like an in-person presentation, no help is to be provided to a speaker while they are speaking.

*Under no circumstances should the speaker receive instruction from coaches, parents, or anyone else while the speech is in session. 


Zoom/Virtual Etiquette

*All speakers will be required to have their webcam turned on when speaking.

*Everyone signed into the EPC 2021 Zoom meeting must follow the following name designations (cf. “Logistics”, below). 

-Speakers ▪ In the main room: Name + Level (e.g. “Sadia Siddiqui, Level 1”) 

-Non-Speakers: Name + Function + Level you would like to accompany (if applicable) (e.g. “Abul Kalam, Judge”; “Sara Rahman, Coach, Level 3”; “Hosam Estwani, Spectator, Level 5”).

*Everyone who is not speaking must be on MUTE.

*Everyone should keep their cameras ON prior to event commencement and turn their cameras OFF, except for the speaker(s) and judge(s).

*CAMERA SUMMARY: (a) everyone (including spectators) has their camera ON prior to the event; (b) once event commences, everyone turns their camera OFF, except the speaker(s) and judge(s).

*Speakers will stand when speaking and face the camera.

*Virtual backgrounds that have any motion are prohibited. *Speakers will be dressed modestly the same way they would at an in-person tournament.

*No chats will be permitted during the event in the Zoom chat window (cf. “Communication,” above).

*Judges will use the Zoom “clap” feature 1 minute prior to stop time and will call time at stop time. 



*Device audio/video must be verified and cross-checked prior to the event day. For example, the coaches or parents can check devices or the speakers can check each other’s devices (cf. “Internet Interruption”, below).

*Everyone must stay in the Zoom meeting for the whole event. If someone leaves the meeting by mistake, they can rejoin by using the Zoom link and will be directed to where they want to go (cf. “Level 2 for example”, above).

*Name designation must be strictly observed (cf. “Zoom/Virtual Etiquette”, above). 

-Speakers ▪ In the main room: Name + Team (e.g. “Sadia Siddiqui, MUNA 1”) 

-Non-Speakers: Name + Function + Team you would like to accompany (if applicable) (e.g. “Abul Kalam, Judge”; “Sara Rahman, Coach, Level 3”; “Hosam Estwani, Spectator, Level 2”). 

*Each speaker should use a quiet space (with minimum distractions from the occupants of the facility) as if you’re speaking in an in-person event as in the past EPCs.

*To improve bandwidth, limit internet usage by others in the home as much as possible (e.g. avoid streaming of video, gaming, etc. on other devices by others in the home).


Internet Interruption

*In the event that a speaker’s speech drops or becomes incomprehensible because e.g., the speaker’s device malfunctions or because of WiFi/internet connection issues, the speaker should immediately call into the EPC Zoom meeting room and will be directed back to their breakout room to complete their speech. Call-in information will be made available in advance. • Please note that others may not speak on behalf of the dropped speaker.

*The judges will determine their score based on what the speaker could communicate comprehensively.

*To avoid such issues to the greatest extent possible, each speaker should cross check their device audio/video prior to tournament day and minimize parallel internet usage within the home (cf. “Logistics”, above).



Note: Subject to Change – Please contact [email protected] for current format

Essay Rubric: 40 Points, Grades 3-12

Letter Rubric: 40 points, Grades 1 and 2

Information Campaign Rubric: 30 Points

Speech Rubric: 40 Points

Poster Rubric: 40 points

Multimedia Rubric: 45 points