Frequency Lists

NAQT’s most popular study guides are “frequency lists” of the most commonly asked about topics in various areas. These are very valuable tools for players to acquire basic familiarity with large chunks of the quiz bowl canon, but they should be looked upon as a way to ensure that teams know enough to be able to answer questions at the giveaway, rather than preparation sufficient to allow a team to expect to power tossups.

As of September 2013 there are four “creator-creation” lists available: Literature, Nonfiction, Music, and Art; each consists of the titles of the works, their genres, their creators, the year in which they were first published (or performed), and the number of times they have appeared in NAQT questions since we published our first set in 1996.

New for September 2013 is the Military Topics list which includes wars, battles, treaties, commanders, units, and other topics of military history. Each entry is classified by type and provides the date, a very brief description of its importance (which might often appear as a giveaway clue in packets), and a frequency count.

Furthermore, as this is data that changes from year to year, NAQT is offering “update rates” to repeat buyers: Schools that have already paid for a list can get complete, updated lists in all subsequent years for a fraction of the original price. The most recent version of NAQT’s frequency lists were released in September 2013. The previous editions were from July 2011. The new versions will begin shipping on Tuesday, October 1, 2013.

List Titles Original Cost Update Cost First Edition
Literature 2,888 $50.00 $12.00 2005
Nonfiction 1,000 $20.00 $5.00 2005
Music 1,236 $20.00 $5.00 2005
Art 619 $10.00 $5.00 2005
Military Topics 696 $12.00 $5.00 2013

Shipping and handling on all Frequency Lists is $5.00 per package, or they can be included at no additional shipping and handling charge with any order of practice questions or tournament questions.

Samples of the Literature, Nonfiction, Music, and Art lists are available in our You Gotta Know section. The creation-creation lists include every title that has been mentioned at least three times in NAQT packets, while the threshold for the Military Topics list is four mentions.

If you have questions about these lists, please contact NAQT at To place an order, please select the appropriate items from our ordering page.

Obviously, there is no guarantee that these topics will be mentioned in any particular NAQT set—ever—but they are an accurate count of the subjects that NAQT’s writers and editors have chosen to use in the past.