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4-H Record Book Competitions

4-H Record Book Competitions

Where and how are 4-H record books reviewed and evaluated?


Club Review and contest

4-H Record Books are first reviewed at the local level by 4-H Community Club Leaders and Project Leaders. Club level evaluation is based on the Danish system where 4-H Record Books are judged against a standard. All contest Books are to include all the elements found in the current record book manual.

Seals are awarded based on the member’s 4-H project work, personal growth and the book’s organization. Through their personal achievements and 4-H participation, members may earn Star Rank recognition.

 Books that receive a gold seal at club level may move up to a County judging competition.  All clubs are to use the Record Book scoring found in the manual or provided by the county office.  

Like ALL 4-H formal competitions, a club record book contest has a training that is to be provided to each evaluator (judge) at every gathering. Please print and have the record Book Judging Chair read the training outloud: 

RB Judges Orientation for club

RB club level contest instructions

Clubs may only use the approved evaluation (scorecard) form 

For 2919-2020 year, the  club score sheet has been updated to remove scoring for Expression pages and Collection of Work.

COVID Club_RB_Excel_Score_Sheet

COVID Club_RB_Word_Score_Sheet

County Competition -

There are 2 options for submission and you club can use both:

 Physical books are due in the 4-H offices (by appointment!) on July 21st . The member must fill out the online entry form:   https://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=30604

 Virtual books are due using the online registration by July 21st .  The member must fill out the online entry form:   https://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=30597


 Make sure that your club has 1 adult judge for every 1 to 4 books submitted. Judges will receive training and  receive 2  options for judging:

  • In-person with a group no larger than 10 people. date TBA
  • Virtual judging from the books that were submitted as electronic files. Dates range from July 27- August 7th, 2020.

Judges will be contacted and given options once all books have been received. Record Books will not be accepted from clubs not meeting the judging quota.   The club will receive one notice the books have been removed from the contest.  Judges can register here:  https://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=30606

Members may submit their 4-H Record Books for county competition. Books are evaluated/judged on the member’s 4-H work, leadership and citizenship development, and personal growth. County level evaluation will be based on the Danish system with all books judged against a standard. Evaluators provide a critique and suggestions for future growth and involvement. The Project based judging has been eliminated. Members are to use the current Record Book manual and all follow instructions.

What needs to be in 4-H record book for the county competition?

  • Personal Development Report (PDR)
  • Annual Project Report APR for each project
  • Market Report Forms (if applicable)
  • County Animal supplemental forms (Rabbits, poultry, dog, horse, advanced livestock if required by Project Leader)
  • Jr/Teen Leader Form (for all areas applicable)
  • My Story
  • Title Page
  • Table of Contents
  • Expression Page  (Optional due to COVID 19)
  • Collection of Work (Optional due to COVID 19)
  • Summary of years

State Competition

State competition is focused on selecting senior 4-H members who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in their 4-H project work. Books are judged against standard criteria.  Those books displaying the most outstanding 4-H work, goal management skills, and leadership and citizenship development are selected as state medalists and/or state winners.  Members no longer need to qualify at a county competition.

See the California State 4-H website for current information and deadlines.