Grading The Quiz Questions

What are the primary reasons for running a Quiz?

– Draw more people to your pub, club or event?
– Persuade these people to come back for the next Quiz and become regular attenders?
– Encourage these new regular Quizzers to bring their friends or family?
– Challenge your Quiz Teams but not bore them or exclude them?
– Provide an entertaining and enjoyable night out?

To achieve all of these outcomes requires a competent Quiz Master, an entertaining Quiz and good quality resources.

Quizzes should be entertaining and inclusive

One common mistake made when compiling a Quiz is the questions are too difficult or too easy. Another slip up may be the questions are all pre-1990 or about one particular era. Then there is the biggest clanger of the lot… Quiz Masters quoting answers that are factually incorrect!

There can be oversights made in the Quiz format. For instance 80 questions over a couple of hours with the answer sheets marked at the end is more like an exam than a Quiz.

Quiz design and format

Bearing the above points in mind and with the aim of creating entertaining and inclusive questions we design our Quizzes as follows:

There are four rounds each on a different subject.
People have different interests and knowledge in specialist subjects so each member of the team is involved.

Each round starts off reasonably easy and finishes with harder questions.
This allows teams, regardless of number or age, the chance to get points on the board and keep an interest in the Quiz.

Each round has bonus points related to one or two of the questions for instance the year ‘a single’ was released or the number of times a team has won ‘the trophy’.
This creates an element of chance allowing teams to gain points even though they may not know the actual answer.

Each round has a variety of ‘eras’.
Each round contains ‘graded’ questions from way back when through to the present day. After all if you have a team of forty somethings, music questions from 2000 on will leave them cold. Likewise for a group of students, 70s and 80s Sports Questions won’t encourage them to return for the next Quiz.

Following each round the papers are called in and marked.
This keeps all the teams informed of how they are doing and creates a bit of healthy competition between them.

Whilst all of the above are crucial to a successful Quiz Night each round having a variety of ‘eras’ is probably the most important. Why? Because this encourages teams to find additional members who are younger, older or have specialist knowledge. Dads bring their sons for the recent music questions and non-sporty people ask their friends who follow sport to come along and join them.

Graded questions

Grading the questions encourages teams to bring along additional team members which makes for bigger crowds and more sales. This also also does something else… it gradually creates a loyalty of the participants to their fellow team members. They feel a responsibility to turn out as their specialist subject or knowledge may be the additional couple of points that wins their team the Quiz. Especially important if winning that Quiz means winning a shed full of money.

Over time this will create a Quiz Night that’s full of teams of varying age groups that return time after time.

This is not just speculation, we see this at first hand. In fact we actively encourage it at our Quiz by suggesting to regular team members that they need a Sports expert or they need to bring along their daughter for the two or three recent tunes in the Music Round if they want to have a chance of winning. This ensures that all the teams have a chance at winning… as if it’s a level playing field it fulfills all of those primary reasons for running a Quiz Night in the first place.