Appraiser Center

At each tournament, the solutions to Team Challenges and Instant Challenges are evaluated by friendly volunteers that we call Appraisers. They’re called ApPRAISErs because their job is to PRAISE the accomplishments of each team, and to AWARD as many points as possible. In Destination Imagination, the emphasis is on what each team produced, not on what they failed to produce.

Appraisers work in teams at each Team Challenge and Instant Challenge solution site. These teams generally include a Challenge Master or head appraiser, challenge appraisers, timekeeper, and prep area appraisers. Each Instant Challenge room will have at least three Appraisers.

How Do I Sign Up?

No special skills or talents are necessary to become a Appraiser. If you appreciate creativity and enjoy working with young people, we’d love to have you join us! Here are the basic requirements for all Appraisers:

  1. Appraisers must be a high school graduate (or equivalent) and at least 18 years old.
  2. You must not appraise the same Team Challenge that your child, sibling, or grandchild is solving, or (if you are a Team Manager) the Team Challenge that your team is solving.
  3. Appraisers must comply with the NH-DI Code of Conduct, which you will be asked to review and agree to when you register.

There is also a time commitment:

  1. You must be prepared to attend our Appraiser training sessions. If you are a Team Challenge Appraiser, you will also need to study your assigned Team Challenge.
  2. You must be prepared to spend an entire day appraising at one of our regional tournaments. The time when you’ll need to arrive can vary depending on your assignment, but you should be prepared to start at 7:00am and might not finish until 6:00pm.
  3. If you appraise at the tournament at which your child will compete, it is very likely you that you will be unable to leave to watch your child’s team. We recommend that parents of team members appraise at a regional tournament scheduled on a different weekend.

If you are the designated Appraiser for a team, the team will be assessed a stiff fee if you fail to fulfill your commitment.

Your willingness to train and officiate will be very much appreciated! NH-DI is a volunteer organization, and we could not offer this wonderful opportunity for students without the help of many well-trained and knowledgeable Appraisers. Thank you for your dedication!

Here’s how to get started:

  1. Read the Team Challenge summaries posted on this web site.
  2. Choose the date on which you’d like to appraise at a regional tournament. If you are the parent of a team member, we strongly encourage you to pick a tournament date when your child’s team will not be performing. That’s because you would not be able to leave to watch their performance.
  3. Review the available Appraiser roles (listed below).

At this point, you’re ready to go online to enter the information that we will need to register your offer to appraise:

By early February, you should receive an email from NH-DI with your tournament assignment, and the schedule for your Appraiser training session(s). If you haven’t received this, email us at, or call the NH-DI Hotline (603) 868-2140.

Appraiser Roles

Appraisers work together as part of a team in which each member has a specific job or role. The various roles are described here, along with some characteristics that might make each role a “good fit.”

  1. No preference: NH-DI will choose your role in order to create a complete Appraisal team, or to respond to specific needs at the tournament to which you were assigned. This is often the most helpful choice for us!
  2. Instant Challenge Appraiser (15 to 18 per tournament): This Appraiser works on a team with two or three others in a quiet classroom. S/he evaluates the teams while they solve or respond to an Instant Challenge that they have never seen before. This official would score the team’s responses, or keep track of their points during their timed presentation period. This Appraiser needs to be friendly and consistent in his/her approach to every team.
  3. Team Challenge Appraiser (2 or more per Challenge): This Appraiser evaluates required elements of the team’s solution to the Challenge (including Team Choice Elements). Each Team Challenge Appraisers will be assigned to observe specific elements of the team solutions. They should have a sense of humor, and be able to maintain consistency while appraising the teams, as well as supportive and appreciative when engaging team members.
  4. Prep Area Appraiser (1 or 2 per Challenge): The Prep Area Appraiser is an outgoing, friendly person who is responsible for greeting team members and Team Managers, relaxing them, and checking that required parts of the solution (props, paperwork, etc.) are in order, and in compliance with the rules of the Challenge. This Appraiser is usually the first tournament official that the team encounters before its performance, so he or she must be very friendly, good with nervous kids, fair, gentle, patient, and well organized.

If you aren’t entirely sure what each role involves, it won’t matter because we’ll teach you everything you need to know at Appraiser training.

We do ask Appraisers to tell us what especially interests them, because we want you to have a great day at the tournament! However, our first priority is to provide our DI teams with a full complement of Appraisers in each Challenge. This could mean that if the role you selected is filled, we might have to place you in a position that you did NOT chose. The needs of the kids always come first for NH-DI, and we trust that you will be flexible and understanding!

NH-DI Appraiser Hats If you’ve been to one of our tournaments, you’ve probably noticed that our officials wear some rather unique head wear. Come to our Appraiser training to find out why the Appraisers make these hats—an international tradition that started right here in New Hampshire.