New "Team" Needs help studying

Dormant threads from the high school sections are preserved here.
Locked
MoMo
Kimahri
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:24 pm

New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by MoMo » Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:32 pm

Ok, so I hope you guys will not be too bothered by my hijacking of your forum, but I needed some help from people who really know this form of competition.

I am in a sorority (I know, try not to judge me just knowing that about me) and we have a "Greek Week" competition coming up in the beginning of May. I am in charge of our team for one of the events, the event being Quiz Bowl. After reading some of the topics here, I understand that the way Quiz Bowl is run in Greek Week is very different from how you guys compete, but I do not need help with the actual format. My problem is, I am having a hard time knowing how to help the girls (and myself) prepare for the event. We should be getting a list of possible categories soon but even then I am not completely sure of how we will go about studying them, and I wanted advice.

Now, these girls are not quiz bowl champs like I am sure you guys are, or even close. I selected the team (seven girls, only six will compete with one alternate) based on an application that included a tiny trivia related quiz that had a variety of questions (from "Who was the first female Secretary of State?" or "Who hosted the Teen Choice Awards in 2009?"). I picked the top girls that answered those, but let me tell you the highest score was 9 out of 16.

So, I need any help that you guys can give me, but keep in mind that I would much rather have fun(ish) study sessions and lose, rather than lecture/boring study sessions and probably still lose. It is not as intense or competitive as I am sure you guys are (I did debate in high school, I know how it can be) but I think we could definitely use a bit of intensity to our practices.

Thanks for any help you can give!
Moriah - Cal Poly Pomona

User avatar
at your pleasure
Auron
Posts: 1670
Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2008 7:56 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by at your pleasure » Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:58 pm

I don't really know how to help without knowing about the format/questions, but my guess based on how quizbowl not run by quizbowl people tends to be is that it will be mostly speedchecks and will be heavily dominated by geography, history, pop culture, and current events. It will probably involve copious amounts of list knowledge, so take a glance at lists of things like officeholders and Nobel prize winners. The best thing would probably be to look at questions from previous years if you can get them. Also, do you know if there's a active quizbowl team on your campus? They might be able to help a bit as well.
Douglas Graebner, Walt Whitman HS 10, Uchicago 14
"... imagination acts upon man as really as does gravitation, and may kill him as certainly as a dose of prussic acid."-Sir James Frazer,The Golden Bough

http://avorticistking.wordpress.com/

User avatar
Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
Chairman of Anti-Music Mafia Committee
Posts: 5640
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 11:46 pm
Location: Columbia, MO

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:00 pm

Unfortunately, it sounds like there's not much we can do to help you here. Most of us here play pyramidal tournaments that are rigorously academic and use a question structure that seems to be wildly different than what you'll be playing. Unless you know who is writing the questions, or what percentage of questions are going to be on certain topics, it sounds like it will be really difficult to figure out what will be coming up in your Greek week set.
Charlie Dees, North Kansas City HS '08
"I won't say more because I know some of you parse everything I say." - Jeremy Gibbs

"At one TJ tournament the neg prize was the Hampshire College ultimate frisbee team (nude) calender featuring one Evan Silberman. In retrospect that could have been a disaster." - Harry White

MoMo
Kimahri
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:24 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by MoMo » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:04 pm

Oh I understand that completely. I am more trying to find any tips that anyone here would have on how to conduct study sessions for the group. I do not think that how you study would change depending on the degree of challenge that the questions have or the format of the tournament.

The way our tournament works is much more similar to the show Jeopardy than the tournament that players here participate in. I still think though that tips on how you guys study as teams would help my team know how to start off.
Moriah - Cal Poly Pomona

MoMo
Kimahri
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:24 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by MoMo » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:09 pm

Dave Breger wrote:I don't really know how to help without knowing about the format/questions, but my guess based on how quizbowl not run by quizbowl people tends to be is that it will be mostly speedchecks and will be heavily dominated by geography, history, pop culture, and current events. It will probably involve copious amounts of list knowledge, so take a glance at lists of things like officeholders and Nobel prize winners. The best thing would probably be to look at questions from previous years if you can get them. Also, do you know if there's a active quizbowl team on your campus? They might be able to help a bit as well.
Yes you are exactly right as to the kind of topics. And no, we do not have any kind of quiz bowl team on our campus, I had actually not even known it was an event until I googled "quiz bowl".

I will check to see if we can get the questions or at least topics from last year, but I do not think that the people in charge either save them or are willing to give them out to the teams, in regards to fairness (Yeah, I know that they could just give them to all the teams, but I am sure someone would find some kind of harm in that.) So we do not have many aides for us to go by, at all.

Sorry, the fact that the posts are "moderated" weirds me out a little when I do not see what I just wrote come up. So I apologize if there are any double postings.
Moriah - Cal Poly Pomona

User avatar
Golran
Auron
Posts: 1032
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 1:23 am
Location: Southern California

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Golran » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:26 pm

I've found that studying pyramidal questions anyways helped me a lot with my local league while in high school that was anything but. Maybe a strategy could be to read through packets or questions with your team and keep score in the way your competition will be, playing in teams? Or maybe just read questions and do a free-for-all as far as answering? You can find old questions at http://collegiate.quizbowlpackets.com
Drayer the Slayer
currently unaffiliated

User avatar
cvdwightw
Auron
Posts: 3446
Joined: Tue May 13, 2003 12:46 am
Location: Southern CA
Contact:

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by cvdwightw » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:46 pm

One thing you might want to do is to ask the people in charge where they are getting their questions from. If they are written by a company (i.e. they are paying for them), you can probably find samples of those company's questions and see what they look like. Important things to look for are the length and difficulty of the questions (are they on things you've heard of before or do they have really out-there answer selections) and whether the questions are "hoses," i.e. questions that seem to ask for one thing and then all of a sudden ask for a different thing (simple example: "This man was known as the 'Iron Chancellor.' Bismarck is the capital of what state?").

The number one thing to do is, if you have a buzzer system, use it; otherwise have some sort of yelling/clapping/whatever session. Divide the girls up into two teams of 3 people each and use whatever practice materials you have on hand; you can find NAQT's sample packets available for free, or free packets of longer questions from http://quizbowlpackets.com and http://collegiate.quizbowlpackets.com (personally, for a group of people who's never played before, I'd probably start with something like the NAQT IS-69A sample or the 2009 Fall Novice tournament from quizbowlpackets.com and just see who is answering what types of questions).

Perhaps the biggest thing to remember is that any sort of attempt to get good is not going to happen overnight, or even over the course of a few practices. I know it's not advice for this year, but look to see if there are people in other houses who are clearly enjoying the competition, and if there are, talk to them and maybe one of the faculty involved with the Greek system about trying to start a quizbowl program on campus (whether that's a full-fledged intercollegiate-competition club or a campus program that just does NAQT's Intramural and Sectionals tournaments). You'll find that not only will the people in the club start becoming able to answer those way-out-there questions in the Greek Week tournament, but also that people from different houses will have fun hanging out with each other answering those questions.
Dwight Wynne
socalquizbowl.org
UC Irvine 2008-2013; UCLA 2004-2007; Capistrano Valley High School 2000-2003

"It's a competition, but it's not a sport. On a scale, if football is a 10, then rowing would be a two. One would be Quiz Bowl." --Matt Birk on rowing, SI On Campus, 10/21/03

"If you were my teammate, I would have tossed your ass out the door so fast you'd be emitting Cerenkov radiation, but I'm not classy like Dwight." --Jerry

User avatar
Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant
Yuna
Posts: 849
Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 11:05 pm
Location: Evanston, IL

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:39 pm

There's also NAQT's lists of stuff that tends to come up. Look for the ones on topics that'll probably come up (the aforementioned geography, pop culture, etc).
Farrah Bilimoria
Formerly of Georgia Tech and Central High School (Macon)

MoMo
Kimahri
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:24 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by MoMo » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:42 am

All of your suggestions have been great! Thanks so much! I will definitely use those sample questions, and ask the person in charge where they got their questions (although I am not going to lie, they probably just perjure them from random websites)
Moriah - Cal Poly Pomona

New York Undercover
Wakka
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 10:22 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by New York Undercover » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:32 pm

You might want to check out sporcle and funtrivia, which probably have quizzes closer in line to the quizbowl you'll be doing than the packets you'll find online. Even novice tournaments are probably aiming at more academic topics than I would expect your competition will.

User avatar
Mettius Fufetius
Wakka
Posts: 209
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2006 2:41 am
Location: Greenville, SC
Contact:

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Mettius Fufetius » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:54 pm

New York Undercover wrote:You might want to check out sporcle and funtrivia, which probably have quizzes closer in line to the quizbowl you'll be doing than the packets you'll find online. Even novice tournaments are probably aiming at more academic topics than I would expect your competition will.
I endorse this suggestion. I've gotten a few points even at real tournaments from Sporcle, but not many, since the quizzes usually test list knowledge of the most basic form. But chances are your questions will rely on that sort of knowledge, and Sporcle is a great way to acquire it. The pop culture/absurd general knowledge stuff is easy to find; academic quizzes with decent coverage may take a little digging, as many haven't been approved to show up on the front page and can only be found via the search function.

If you're taking a quiz, you might also look up some additional information on the questions -- not only will this help you should actual clues sneak in, but you'll probably need fewer repetitions to ace the quiz. Having more detailed information than you require often makes the simple questions seem easier.
Quinn James
Furman University '10

canaanbananarama
Wakka
Posts: 110
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2003 10:39 pm
Location: Everywhere, SAKARTVELO

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by canaanbananarama » Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:10 am

Hey,

I'm a former member of the UCLA quizbowl team who has also participated in various events that might be more similar to what this "Greek Week" competition entails. At UCLA, we have a competition between dorm houses at which the level of questions might be similar to what "Greek Week" is; i.e., less academic, shorter, wonky in terms of format. I can tell you that the dorm competitions would often devolve into "which quizbowler lives in this dorm this year" and we'd often meet each other towards the end of the competition, and other teams were not competitive against us, the faculty to boot (the dorm champion would always play a faculty team). My sophomore year, it so happened that two of the best three quizbowlers at UCLA, and certainly the two best on question sets like this, were put in the same dorm, and according to the rules, we had to play together and beat the competition in routs (it got to the point that in prelim games, my teammate and I would rotate in and out so that the scores weren't so bad-looking and the other of us would just spectate or, as we have social lives, go do something else). I can absolutely attest to the fact that no matter how weird the question format, playing low-level, not so "rigorous" sets like ACF Fall could only help your team. Though I could only facilitate this (I live in Tunisia), if you had the energy and interest, I could suggest to the UCLA people either to drive to Pomona or you to them and have somewhat of an informal "practice," with a mix of CBI questions (which are more similar to what you might play) and ACF Fall, NAQT Intramural and EFT questions, which are good novice packets which have questions on accessible academic topics that could come up in your "Greek Week" competition. They could also bring "trash" packets, which are more pop culture based (movies, TV, sports, non-academic literature), which might be helpful if there is a high pop culture element in these questions.

Various people from UCLA post to these boards, but I can attest that they're a nice group of people, and I think they'd be happy to have a practice session with you. UCLA as a team used to lean more towards shorter question tournaments, and I'm sure we've got plenty of stuff in our archive at easy access that could help you prepare. And it'd be a nice opportunity to see what the real circuit, and who knows, possibly develop a team for Cal Poly. Certainly one of the reasons I played "quizbowl" in college was the opportunity to travel (UCLA used to have a budget that allowed us to travel to the East Coast up to three times a year, which is great for keeping in touch with my friends from California high schools who went out-of-state. Nationals are in Chicago and DC this year, and whatever your reaction to quizbowl in this form, you can get a team going and get funding from your school to go to these tournaments. I have various good contacts among student union higher-ups in California, and I'm sure they would be happy to talk to your activities directors if I asked.

If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me at charles.meigs at gmail.com, or Facebook me.

Sincerely,
Charles Meigs
Informal and Self-Appointed Ambassador for Southern California Quizbowl

(n.b. I edited my post to put my last name in my signature for this post, and to mention that I'm still curious as to who gave me my current signature, as it was not me. I find it amusing, and it's not a bad thing to have attached to me in these parts, but I just wanted to make sure it's not taken note of in this post.)
C. Meigs
CA

MoMo
Kimahri
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:24 pm

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by MoMo » Mon Feb 22, 2010 12:01 pm

Charles, I emailed you, thank you so much!

I am definitely going to check out sporcle and those other sites mentioned, and start having us play sample rounds during our practice sessions. Thank you guys so much, you have been so helpful an accommodating I can only imagine the wonderful people I would meet should we start a real academic team at the school.
Moriah - Cal Poly Pomona

User avatar
Not That Kind of Christian!!
Yuna
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 10:36 pm
Location: Manhattan

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Not That Kind of Christian!! » Mon Feb 22, 2010 1:22 pm

MoMo wrote: I can only imagine the wonderful people I would meet should we start a real academic team at the school.
If you're interested in doing this/helping this happen, I'm sure there are many of us who would want to facilitate it.
Hannah Kirsch
Brandeis University 2010
NYU School of Medicine 2014

"Wow, those Scandinavians completely thorbjorned my hard-earned political capital."

User avatar
Golran
Auron
Posts: 1032
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 1:23 am
Location: Southern California

Re: New "Team" Needs help studying

Post by Golran » Mon Feb 22, 2010 5:08 pm

You're welcome (or anyone is for that matter) to join us at practices at UCLA, however it is unlikely that we would be able to get up to Cal Poly because of our car situation (i.e. nobody here owns one). We practice on Monday nights at 6:00 in Ackerman student union for the rest of this quarter, and we'll know our time for spring quarter soon. Feel free to send me an e-mail at Golran at ucla dot edu if you need directions or anything.

Charles, just an fyi, I've gotten involved with writing/editing the dorm quizbowl for this year. This year is going to be 100% hose-free, but the format will remain wonky (for this year at least). It also happens that the person at ORL that's second in charge of this event is roommates with Cliff, and has been getting some input from him.
Drayer the Slayer
currently unaffiliated

Locked