Judging Criteria

InvestWrite Topic For Grades 9-12, Fall 2014

The maximum number of words in the essay for this grade division is 1000 and the minimum is 400.

Background:  The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 enabled the creation of a 41,000-mile network of interstate highways across the US.  Federal and local governments paid for this construction with money they raised by issuing bonds through the capital markets. This saved the general public from having to pay large tax increases or tolls to cover the cost of construction.

Today, you can buy a wide variety of products at your local supermarket thanks to these highways. Many products are delivered by trucks that drive across the country. This doesn’t only pertain to food. Items at your local drugstore or department store – even your local car dealership – were packed into trucks and transported across the US (and even beyond) for your enjoyment.

Essay:  Choose a product or service offered by a company from your SMG team portfolio that you think would be a valuable long term investment. Describe why you selected it. Discuss how the capital markets helped create the product and how they help make it available to you. What is the role of the stock market or the bond market regarding that investment, in the past and/or in the future? Be sure to discuss why you believe it is a wise investment for the long term.

Note:  If you do not have a stock or bond in your portfolio that you would like to write about, you may choose one that you have an interest in. You can be as creative as you want but be sure to cite your sources where appropriate.

Guidelines and Directions

Six easy steps to walk you through InvestWrite:

FIRST, what you need to know about InvestWrite entries:

  • You may submit no more than 10 entries from any classroom and only one entry per student. If you have more than one class participating in The Stock Market Game program you may submit up to 10 entries per class.
  • All submitted entries must address the contest assignment as stated on this website.
  • Each entry must be an original work, representing the student's own research, thinking, and writing.
SECOND, share these InvestWrite GUIDELINES with your students:

Each student may submit only one entry with a maximum word count of:

  • 700 words for 4-5 grade
  • 850 words for 6-8 grade
  • 1000 words for 9-12 grade

  •   Minimum of 400 words

The title chosen by each student (excluding the author's name) must appear at the top of the first page of the text. If references are cited, include them following the last page of the text. (Please note: only the body of the essay will be included in the word count, the title and the works cited will not count against the specified word limit.)

  • The format for references or works cited can be chosen by the teacher.
  • Identification of the student or teacher in the essay will result in disqualification.
  • Since the judges will base their decision on the author's understanding of the subject matter, rationale, and writing style, please do the same when you judge. View judging criteria.
  • All essays must be submitted in plain text; no charts, graphs or symbols will be accepted.
THIRD, discuss the background with your class and assign the due date. Make sure you give yourself enough time to read and select entries before the InvestWrite online submission deadline December 13, 2014.

FOURTH, read the InvestWrite entries and choose no more than ten entries per class to submit on behalf of your students. Each entry must be entered onto the InvestWrite website to be eligible. Simply cut and paste the entry from any word processing application.

FIFTH, in addition to student entries, please be prepared for online submissions by making additional copies of this page and compiling the following information for online submission:
  • Teacher's name
  • Teacher's Stock Market Game login ID and password
  • Teacher's personal telephone number and email address
  • School name, physical address and phone number
  • Student's first name and last initial
  • Student's Stock Market Game team login ID
  • Additional information may be required at the time of submittal

This information will help us contact InvestWrite award winners!

SIXTH, return to www.InvestWrite.org to submit your top ten, teacher-judged entries for each class beginning September 22, 2014. The deadline to submit InvestWrite entries is December 13, 2014.

If you plan to participate, please help us by completing our "quick-and-easy" pre-registration form. Pre-Register now!

Eligibility and Judging Criteria:
  • Teachers and students must be currently enrolled in the Fall 2014 Stock Market Game program. Teachers with classes must have a valid login ID and password. Student entries will require a valid team ID.
  • Judges will base their decisions on the author's understanding of the subject matter, rationale, and writing style.
  • The national judges' panel consists of selected Stock Market Game program staff that represents the SIFMA Foundation.
  • InvestWrite entries that do not meet the criteria in the Guidelines will not be considered.
  • InvestWrite entries will not be returned to the author.
  • SIFMA Foundation reserves the right to edit, publish, disseminate, and otherwise use all entries at their discretion.

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