NOTE: As competitions vary (team vs. individual; offensive vs. defensive, etc) the rating system is based on three aspects that all competitions have in common. These metrics provide a basis to assess the level of each competition, even though one might have a different objective than another.
Scope of Knowledge
Task Pressure/ Rigor
The event requires either advanced knowledge of a broad range of topics or an extensive depth of a few specific topics- networking, security, Windows, Linux, policy, forensics, etc. Substantial time will be spent in preparation of the event.
Competition performance is scored based upon completion of a high volume of technically advanced challenges and in a tightly timed environment. Competitor professionalism and soft skills are also scored areas.
Competitors are exposed to several top industry professionals and national organizations. Top entry employment positions are usually extended to competitors.
The event covers a moderate range of topics or requires a moderate knowledge in a few areas. Preparation time can prove helpful, but not always needed.
Competition performance is scored by completion of a moderate volume of technical challenges. Challenges are usually timed but not often overwhelming. Professionalism is not always scored.
Competitors are exposed to some industry professionals and a mix of regional and national organizations. Employment and internship opportunities can be offered through participation in the event. Educational scholarship opportunities are common.
The event does not require a high amount of prerequisite knowledge other than basic security and sys admin principles. Advanced preparation is usually not necessary.
Competition performance is scored based upon the completion of various technical challenges. Individual challenges are not constrained to tight, high pressure time tables.
Competitors are exposed to a small number of industry professionals and organizations. Internships are usually sought by sponsoring organizations. Educational scholarship opportunities may be available.