Changes for 2020–2021

NAQT has made a number of changes to its rules and policies for the 2020–2021 season:


In all official NAQT documents, we now use “they” (and related pronouns) to refer to persons of unspecified or general gender (rather than “he or she,” etc.).

Licensing Policy

We substantially rewrote the Licensing Policy, which applies to NAQT study materials acquired by purchasing them as practice material or playing or hosting most tournaments using NAQT questions. We clarified many aspects, including but not limited to those related to online practices.

The only substantive change is the elimination of the rule that organizationally licensed practice materials may be used with “mixed groups” if at least two-thirds of the group is affiliated with the organization holding the license. Instead, we allow the use of licensed practice materials for the purpose of introducing people to quiz bowl (which was the purpose of the two-thirds rule), with specific parameters for defining such groups.

Gameplay Rules

We made the following changes to the NAQT Gameplay Rules (highlighted on the page):

Correctness Guidelines

We made one type of change to the NAQT Correctness Guidelines: the rules related to names have been reworded to be in terms of surnames/family names and given names rather than first and last names. For example, “Xi” is the required portion of the name “Xi Jinping” because “Xi” is the family name, even though it comes first. This was always the intent of our rules, but we used imprecise wording; now the rules match our intent and practice.

Eligibility Rules

We made the following changes to NAQT Eligibility Rules (Middle School, High School, Community College, and Collegiate):

We changed the College Division II Eligibility Rules to specify that if a team is invited to the Intercollegiate Championship Tournament fewer than 21 days before it starts, the invitation may be declined without costing the team’s players their Division II eligibility. We also made a number of non-substantive changes to those rules to improve their clarity.

Qualification Rules

We added the following to all qualification rules for NAQT national championships:

NAQT may decline to issue, rescind, or attach additional conditions to an invitation, if it finds that one of more of the recipient school’s players, coaches, or other affiliates engaged in conduct inconsistent with Section K of the Official NAQT Rules. This may be applied to conduct that occurred at quiz bowl tournaments (regardless of whether the tournaments used the Official NAQT Rules and/or NAQT questions) or outside of tournaments.

In the definition of Small School (used for qualification for the Small School National Championship Tournament), we eliminated references to average daily membership because it is defined differently by different states and not at all by other states. We use total enrollment numbers in all cases.

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