2020 Intercollegiate Championship Tournament Logistics Information

The 2020 Intercollegiate Championship Tournament (ICT), powered by LetterOne, will be held at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare in Rosemont, Illinois (near Chicago), on April 3–4, 2020. The 2019 ICT was also held at this site.

Registration is now open.



    April 3–4, 2020 (Friday–Saturday).

    Check-in will occur on Friday, April 3, but all gameplay will be on Saturday, April 4.

    Presenting Sponsor

    NAQT is thrilled to have LetterOne as the presenting sponsor of the 2020 ICT (as well as the 2020 IPNCT and the 2020 HSNCT). LetterOne is a partnership of successful entrepreneurs and former CEOs aiming to create one of the world’s pre-eminent international investment firms. LetterOne believes quiz bowl encourages the team-based, innovative thinking that is valuable to the next generation of business leaders in the face of a new industrial revolution in which social media, robotics, 3D manufacturing, artificial intelligence, and new trade corridors are altering the landscape.


    The Hyatt Regency O'Hare hotel in Rosemont, Illinois (near Chicago). This building is the official hotel, and it contains all of the competition rooms. An online floor plan (PDF) is available.


    Note that the Division I and Division II fields will have different schedules on Saturday to accommodate different formats (due to the differing number of teams).

    This schedule is tentative.

    Friday Evening

    Time Event Location Area
    6:00 – 9:30 p.m. Team check-inConference Center foyer Lobby Level
    7:30 – 9:30 p.m. Staff check-inTBD

    Saturday Morning

    Time Event Location Area
    7:00 – 8:00 a.m. Secondary team check-inTBD
    7:30 – 7:45 a.m. Secondary staff check-inTBD
    7:50 – 8:20 a.m. Staff meetingTBD
    8:00 – 8:20 a.m. Player meetingTBD

    Saturday Gameplay: Division I

    Time Event Location Area
    8:30 – 11:30 a.m. Preliminary rounds (1–5)Throughout the hotel
    After Round 5 Record confirmationThroughout the hotel
    11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Lunch 
    12:15 – 1:00 p.m. Tiebreakers (Round 6)Throughout the hotel
    1:00 – 4:00 p.m. Playoff rounds (7–11)Throughout the hotel
    After Round 11 Record ConfirmationThroughout the hotel
    4:15 – 4:45 p.m. Tiebreakers (Round 12)Throughout the hotel
    4:45 – 6:30 p.m. Superplayoff rounds (13–15)Throughout the hotel
    6:30 – 6:45 p.m. Break/results tabulation 
    6:45 – 6:55 p.m. Playoff announcementsTBD
    6:55 – 8:30 p.m. Tiebreakers and finals (Rounds 16–18)TBD
    After finals AwardsTBD
    After awards Buzzer returnTBD

    Saturday Gameplay: Division II

    Time Event Location Area
    8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Preliminary rounds (1–7)Throughout the hotel
    After Round 7 Record confirmationThroughout the hotel
    12:30 – 2:00 p.m. Lunch  Lobby Level
    1:15 – 2:00 p.m. Tiebreakers (Round 8)Throughout the hotel
    2:00 – 6:00 p.m. Playoff rounds (9–14)Throughout the hotel
    6:00 – 6:15 p.m. Break/results tabulation 
    6:15 – 6:25 p.m. Playoff announcementsTBD
    6:25 – 8:00 p.m. Tiebreakers and finals (Rounds 15-17)TBD
    After DI finals AwardsTBD
    After awards Buzzer returnTBD

    The post-preliminary tiebreaker round (Round 6 for Division I, Round 8 for Division II) overlaps 45 minutes of lunch. Most teams will have nearly 90 minutes for lunch, but those involved in tiebreaker games will need to be back early.

    The Round 12 tiebreaker game in Division I will only be played for teams still in the running for the Overall and/or Undergraduate title.

    The finals (and awards) will start as soon as possible; 6:55 and 6:25 are estimates of when the Division I and Division II finals will begin, but it might be earlier.

    During the tournament, participants may text 213‑279‑6278 (“NAQT”) with questions; tournament staff will answer incoming messages as quickly as they can. Standard messaging rates apply.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    NAQT has prepared answers to frequently asked questions about its national championships.

    Rules and Eligibility

    This tournament will use NAQT’s Official Gameplay Rules and College Eligibility Rules. Teams and players in Division II are additionally subject to the Division II eligibility rules. Teams and players competing for the Undergraduate title in Division I are subject to the Undergraduate eligibility rules.


    Schools qualified to send teams to the ICT through their performances at Sectional Championship Tournaments (SCTs) held in February and at the 2020 Community College Championship Tournament (CCCT). Details about the way in which schools qualify for ICT and which players may represent a school at the ICT may be found on the ICT qualification page, which also details the effects on players’ Division II eligibility of playing in an SCT or qualifying for or playing at an ICT. NAQT has answers for some frequently asked questions about eligibility.

    Four Division II invitations are reserved for the top teams from the CCCT.

    Invitees have one week from NAQT’s issuance of an invitation to accept or decline, though they may request an extension if additional time is required. The acceptance period may be shortened if invitations are awarded nearer to the actual tournament. To accept an invitation, see the section below on Registration. To decline an invitation, send an e-mail to decline@naqt.com. (A team may later “un-decline” a declined invitation, in which case it will be placed first on the waitlist.)


    The field for Division I is limited to 36 teams; these teams have registered.

    The field for Division II is limited to 32 teams; these teams have registered.

    The expansion of the Division I field (from 2017’s 32 teams) is made possible by the continuing support of the ICT’s presenting sponsor, LetterOne.


    The exact format has yet to be determined.

    Both Division I and Division II will probably use formats very similar to those used in 2019. Complete descriptions of the 2019 Division I and Division II formats are available.

    Registration and Fees

    Registration is now open.

    The registration fee is $425 per team.

    The registration fee only covers participation in the tournament. It does not cover transportation, lodging, food, or other expenses.

    Teams who bring a working buzzer system to the tournament will be eligible for a $20 discount on the registration fee if it meets NAQT’s national-championship standards. There may be some surprises in that policy! Please read it in advance to make sure your system qualifies.

    Unless otherwise approved by NAQT, no team may receive more than two buzzer-system discounts.

    NAQT will only award the discount for buzzer systems that it may keep until the completion of the awards ceremony; if these terms do not work for you, do not register to bring a buzzer system!

    Staff-member discounts ($75) are only automatically available to teams who notify NAQT on or before March 1 that they will be bringing a staff member. Teams indicating an interest after that date may be extended the discount at NAQT’s discretion. Teams are responsible for the travel and housing costs of staff members for which they receive discounts. In addition, after March 1, commitments to bring staff members will be considered final. Teams who promise to bring a staff member, but who cancel that staff member on or after March 2, will be charged a $50 penalty (in addition to forfeiting the discount).

    Discounts are only available for dedicated staff members; a team may not claim a single staff-member discount by having one team member keep score for the morning rounds and a different team member keep score for the afternoon rounds. Note that team-provided staff members will not, in general, keep score for their own team.


    Invitation acceptances will be considered final on March 1. If a team cancels on or after March 2 but before March 15, it will be liable for 50% of the base registration fee as a cancellation penalty. Teams who cancel on or after March 15 (including tournament no-shows) will be liable for the entire base registration fee. Failure to submit participation releases on time may be treated as a cancellation, including incurring a cancellation fee, at NAQT’s discretion.


    Once you have entered all the information that can affect costs (but not necessarily entered your roster), at the bottom of your registration page or the field page (while you’re logged in), click “View Cost.” Verify that the listed information is correct. If it is, follow the page’s instructions to request an invoice (so we have the proper billing information), and you will be offered the opportunity to pay by credit card. If the information is not correct, write to billing@naqt.com with the details.

    You can also pay by sending a check, payable to “NAQT,” to

    National Academic Quiz Tournaments
    11521 W 69th Street
    Shawnee, KS 66203

    Participation Releases

    Every participant will be required to sign a participation release covering expectations, media coverage, etc. All players’ releases must be submitted to release@naqt.com by Friday, March 27, 2020. Releases will be made available via the registration process.

    Participants who are not at least 18 years old as of the start of the tournament must notify NAQT so that arrangements can be made to have parents/legal guardians sign the release.

    If you’re not sure of your roster in advance, enter everyone who might play and submit releases for all of them. It’s fine to drop players, but if a player’s release is not submitted on time, they may not play. For the purposes of participation releases, it doesn’t matter which team from your school they’re on (if you enter multiple teams).

    An example participation release is available.

    Checking In

    The primary check-in period will be from 6:00 to 9:30 p.m. in the Conference Center (Lobby Level) on Friday, April 3. During this period NAQT will be distributing information folders, answering questions, receiving payments, and taking care of other administrative matters. There is a late check-in period on Saturday morning, but NAQT would prefer that as many teams as possible check in on Friday night.

    To check in, each team should send one representative to the check-in area. That person will be given the team’s information folder.

    Teams that don’t arrive at the hotel until after 9:30 p.m. on Friday may check in between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m. outside the opening meeting. Teams that checked in on Friday do not need to check in again on Saturday.


    The top three teams in Division I (Overall), Division I (Undergraduate), and Division II (Overall) will each receive team trophies and their members (and coaches) will receive individual awards. In addition, the top eight individual scorers in Division I, the top eight individual scorers in Division II, and the top four undergraduate scorers in Division I will be given All-Star awards.

    Individual All-Star awards will be based solely on the preliminary rounds, not the playoff rounds.



    Participants are strongly encouraged to fly into Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD), which is extremely close to the hotel. They may also fly into Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW), but it is much less convenient.

    Ground Transportation

    The hotel runs a free shuttle every 15 minutes to transport people from O’Hare to the hotel (and vice versa). There is no such shuttle for Midway. A taxi between Midway and the hotel will cost $35 or more, or you can take the CTA’s Orange and Blue Lines for $2.75 per person (getting on at the Midway Orange Line station, transferring to the Blue Line downtown, and getting off at the Rosemont Blue Line station, which is about one block from the hotel).

    Driving Directions

    The hotel’s address is 9300 Bryn Mawr Avenue, Rosemont, Illinois.


    Parking standard vehicles at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare costs $15/day, including in-and-out privileges. Participants traveling to the tournament in buses should contact the hotel in advance to discuss parking options.

    To receive the discounted parking rate, participants staying at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare should mention when checking into their guest rooms (not the tournament) that they have parked at the hotel and validate their ticket. Participants not staying at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare should use the manual validator box to validate their parking ticket at NAQT’s check-in desk (Friday) or outside the control room (Saturday). Do not use the manual validator box if you are an overnight guest of the hotel!


    The Hyatt Regency O’Hare (9300 Bryn Mawr Avenue, Rosemont, Illinois) is both the official hotel and the competition site for the tournament.

    Rooms with one king bed are available for $117 per night; rooms with two double beds are available for $125 per night. To receive this rate, rooms must be booked before March 16, 2020 (and before the room block fills).

    You may book online or mention “NAQT” when making a reservation over the phone. Please note that there are two Hyatt hotels in Rosemont; the one hosting the tournament is the Hyatt Regency O’Hare next to the convention center.

    Teams that book rooms at the as part of NAQT’s official block are guaranteed to have free wireless Internet access in their guest rooms and in the public areas (but not in the meeting rooms).


    The hotel’s O’H American Grill serves most meals, often with an all-you-can-eat buffet.

    There is a food court with a variety of typical food-court-style restaurants at the Fashion Outlets of Chicago mall at 5220 Fashion Outlets Way. To get to the Fashion Outlets from the hotel, walk west on Bryn Mawr, turn left onto River Road, then turn right onto Balmoral Avenue until you get to Fashion Outlets Way. The food court is a 15-minute walk from the hotel.

    There are also several restaurants offering more formal dining at the Parkway Bank Park at Rosemont (formerly MB Financial Park). These are more suited for evening meals and are a twelve-minute walk away.

    Participants can also order carry-out or delivery from local restaurants.

    Advocate Program

    Because NAQT believes that quiz bowl is an activity for everybody, and in which all participants should feel welcome and respected, we have established the Advocate Program to make sure tournament staff are available to hear reports about problematic behavior and comments by anyone at the tournament.

    Staff wearing blue ribbons that say “Advocate” have been specifically selected to receive reports about inappropriate behavior (as opposed to run-of-the-mill questions about the quiz bowl aspects of the tournament). Advocate Program staff will be available in many places around the tournament site.

    Feedback about problematic behavior can, of course, always be sent to NAQT by e-mail (advocate@naqt.com) or other channels such as the Misconduct Reporting Form, but the Advocate Program is intended to allow for in-person reporting of sensitive complaints on-site so they can be handled immediately.

    Reports are confidential to the extent permitted by law and NAQT’s agreements to share critical information with other quiz bowl organizations.


    In general, spectators are welcome to attend any and all parts of the tournament (and no registration or tickets are required). However, competitors at the following day’s IPNCT and their friends, relatives, coaches, and chaperones may not be in the game rooms (or even the same general area as the ICT matches) to ensure that no information about the IPNCT questions is compromised.


    Chicago has a variety of world-class attractions that should appeal to anybody, especially to quiz bowlers!

    The easiest way to reach most of Chicago’s downtown attractions is to ride the Chicago Transit Authority’s (CTA’s) ‘L’ trains, for which there is a stop within easy walking distance of the hotel: Exit the hotel and walk west on Bryn Mawr; turn right on River Road and pass under I-190 and the CTA tracks. The entrance to Rosemont station on the CTA Blue Line will be on your right. Board trains bound for “Loop” or “Forest Park” (not for O’Hare!) for the 35-minute ride into downtown Chicago.

    Once you’re downtown, the Art Institute of Chicago (Blue Line to Monroe, walk 1 block south to Adams and 3 blocks west) features dozens of tossup-worthy works, including Nighthawks and American Gothic, and adjoins both Millennium Park and Grant Park, home to Cloud Gate (“The Bean”) and Buckingham Fountain. Just a bit further south is the Museum Campus (Blue Line to Jackson, walk 1 block east to State Street and Jackson and catch bus 146 toward Museum Campus), which is home to three major institutions: the Shedd Aquarium, the Field Museum of Natural History, and the historic Adler Planetarium, which was the first planetarium in the Americas.

    The Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower; Blue Line to Jackson, walk 4 blocks west) offers stunning views of the Chicago skyline; so does 875 North Michigan Avenue (formerly the John Hancock Center; Blue Line to Chicago station, bus 66 toward Navy Pier), located on Michigan Avenue in the heart of famed Magnificent Mile. Further afield are the Lincoln Park Zoo (Blue Line to Western, bus 73 to Clark/North), the Chicago History Museum (5 minutes walk from the zoo), and the Museum of Science and Industry (Blue Line to Jackson, walk 1 block east to State Street and Jackson and catch bus 6 toward 79th/South Shore), which is housed in a structure originally built for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition.

    Social Media

    The official hashtag for the tournament is ict; please use this tag for all posts about the tournament.

    Remember that question content for the championship cannot be posted online (or shared through other channels)! This means that players, coaches, spectators, and moderators should not discuss clues, answers, or even overall themes (e.g., “Lots of opera”) with people on other teams (even those from the same school).

    NAQT Nationals app logo

    Companion Mobile App

    NAQT has created a companion mobile app for attendees. The app includes the tournament schedule (with the ability to set reminders for various events), links to results, maps of the venue, help reaching the Information Desk, connections to social media, and other important documents related to the tournament.

    Download on the App Store Get it on Google Play

    Further Questions

    To ask specific questions about the ICT, e-mail ict@naqt.com.

    We look forward to answering any and all questions, no matter how expansive or trivial, in the hopes of eliminating any possible confusion or mistakes in participants’ plans. If something’s not clear, let us know!

    2020 Intercollegiate Championship Tournament

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