Advice for a first time scribe?

Definitely check the tests as soon as you get to the show. Be sure the tests are in the order on the day sheet. SOmetimes blank tests are added in wherever there is a change of test - dont make the mistake I did (ONCE) and start writing on it. All the rest will be one rider off…

If you cannot see the rider"s number as they go around, ask the rider after she says “good morning” or whatever. Write that number in the space for it at the top of the page.

And regarding circling comments, some judges ask you to do that. If not asked, I would NEVER do it. Your job is to write what you are told - nothing else, and nothing less. DOnt change words.

Also, as I understand it, it is the Judge’s job to write the “-2” on the back of the test under “errors”. SOmetimes I have to remind them. SOmetimes I scoot my red pen over towards them as they write the collectives as a subtle signal. DO check everything before putting the test in the pile for the runner to pick up.

And some judges want you to write the collective numbers and comments.

Again, thanks for doing this, we cannot have shows without volunteers… You will learn a LOT.


Thank you everyone for this wealth of knowledge!

This is going to be a small show. We only have 24 rides total. There is one 2nd level and one 4th level and everything else is Intro and Training. There may be a couple of western dressage and Working Equitation tests, but everything else will be Intro and Training (if I were to guess 18-20 of the 24 rides will be Intro or Training).

So, that’s a load off. I’ve ridden all of the Training Level tests myself and I’m familiar with the Intro tests. I’m going to look over the 2nd and 4th and the western/WE tets. The times will be released Friday and I can see who is riding what when. Usually, it starts with Intro and ends with the highest level.

We have a lovely covered arena and the weather is supposed to be sunny and the 80’s. The arena is always cooler, so it should feel good in there.

I’ve got to remember to bring a red pen home with me from school tomorrow (I’m a teacher). I’ve got some nice writing pens of all colors so I’ll grab a black and a red.

We have a show almost once a month (except in the heat of summer…too hot) so we get a lot of the same crowd. I’m familiar with most of the horses/riders that frequent our shows.

Thanks again, guys! I’ll report back Saturday when I’ve successfully completed my first scribing experience!


I should have put a disclaimer that I tend to scribe for the same small group of judges, so they know me and we have a system. I also know their preferences in terms of circling the movements/directives, writing errors, etc. If it’s a new judge who I haven’t sat with before I would definitely ask.

It’s even better scribing over a longer period when you really get to know your judges, and they get to know you!

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Just a quick thank you to everyone for all of the help in this thread. The show went great and I had a wonderful time scribing. I hope to do it again!