Writing Questions for Club Practice

Winning teams will tell you that writing questions is one of the best ways that players can broaden their knowledge and increase their game skills.

We've put together question writing templates to use in writing Face-Off & Bonus pairs as well as Ultimate Challenge rounds. These are useful for drills at practice or for local scrimmage games.

We recommend that each HCASC Club member have regular writing assignments. This will instill discipline and increase their readiness for competition.

Some club members may not make the best players, but they may be brilliant writers and in that way contribute to your team's success.

Tips on Writing Face-Off & Bonus Questions

  1. In this format the category title and description serve as clues to the players so they are important. For example: Over Summer Vacation - People, places and events in the news during the summer of 2011. That description gives the players a time parameter and clues as to the subject matter.
  2. We often use a letter or character string in a category to denote that there is a pattern to the answers and then explain that in the description. For example: ABC's of Economics - Which term from economics that begins with "A," "B," or "C" is... That description tells them that all the answers begin with A, B or C and that the terms are all from economics.
  3. Face-Offs are short and usually contain 2-3 clues. For example: Who succeeded Anwar Sadat as President of Egypt in 1981? has 3 clues (succeeded Sadat, was President of Egypt and took office in 1981).
  4. Bonuses are slightly longer and most often are multi-part questions. For example:
    Mubarak was forced to step down in 2011 after massive demonstrations against him, in which capital?
    In which specific square?
  5. The Bonus will generally be related to the Face-Off. Take note of how the Bonus is a direct follow-up to the Face-Off.

Tips on Writing Ultimate Challenge Questions

  1. The answers must be "pinned," that is, there can be no alternative answers.
  2. If using multiple choice, there must be 5 or more choices.
  3. Keep all of the Ultimate Challenge questions of the same format and approximate length.
  4. Make sure that the 10 questions can be read in 35 to 45 seconds. An Ultimate Challenge round that can be read in less than 35 seconds is too easy and if the round takes longer than 45 seconds, it is too hard.
  5. In each group of 10 questions there should be a few easy ones, some of medium difficulty and a few that are most difficult.

Download the zip file.

Click for a list of online question writing resources.