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Guidance for Question Setters

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Guidance for Question Setters 2019–20


For each of the eight Specialist rounds, eight questions plus two supplementaries are required. For the General Knowledge Round, twelve rounds of eight questions are required, plus six supplementaries. The teams setting the questions should be identified on the night.

For most weeks this season 10 sets of questions are required for League games, nine for the games and one for the archive. On some weeks 11 sets are required. If this applies to you, you will be notified in good time.

It is the responsibility of the team setting the Specialist round to assemble the questions in a timely manner. Warnings will be given in good time to teams setting the questions.

All sets of questions must be at Waters Green Tavern in Waters Green in individually sealed envelopes on the day before the game (Monday).

As every League now has eight teams, there will normally be three games per week in each league with one team asking questions and the remaining team having a "bye".

All League teams asking questions must thus normally provide THREE Question Masters to cover the games being played. The exception to this will be the two weeks of the season in each League where all eight teams play each other and thus there is no team left to act as Question Master.

On the above occasions, the "Home" team in each game will be obliged to provide a Question Master, thus ensuring each League team only has to do that once in the season.

All teams asking questions must provide Question Masters to cover the games in their League. The league is run by the teams for the teams. When you sign up, you commit not just to completing your fixtures, but also to setting a quiz once a season, and asking questions twice a season.

In Cup and Plate games, anyone wanting to reserve a particular game or venue may do so in consultation with the Secretary and all other teams affected beforehand. The Secretary will administer this.


The Specialist round question categories are as follows:
Arts and Entertainment
All Question Setters are advised to read through these notes prior to setting their questions, and again when their set of questions has been completed.
Do not include questions with more than one, or indeed multiple, answers. Make sure each question you have written only has ONE correct answer.
A quiz is a quiz: it's made up of some questions that you will know the answer to, and some you will not. Provided there are no 'trick' questions, there shouldn't be too much room for moaning
Make sure you understand the question before you write it, and that the question is grammatically correct and punctuated. Don't be longwinded and make sure the Question Master knows the answer you want. It is a good idea to include supplementary information with the answer. It often makes for a clearer understanding of the question, and adds to the evening.
Always make sure you can give references in case a question is challenged. If you use reference material, make sure it is up to date. Most current facts and figures can be easily checked. If you are not sure, don't ask that question.
Questions should preferably be typed, and each Specialist subject should be on a separate sheet. Hand-written sets are acceptable providing they can be read! Make sure there is the right number of questions and they are numbered correctly, e.g. the General Knowledge should be numbered 1 to 96.
If the answer to a question is a year or number, always include some leeway unless it is reasonable to expect an exact answer.
All Specialist rounds should contain a variety of questions within the general heading. Likewise make sure the General Knowledge has a good variety.
Specialist Rounds are designed to include questions which fall under the broad subject heading, not questions that require a level of specialist knowledge denied to most of the population on any given topic.
Don't ask obscure and difficult questions just to show how smart you think you are. If your own team colleagues can't answer the question, throw it out. If you use technical or foreign phrases, indicate how the word should be pronounced.
Try and balance the questions so that the standard of difficulty is as equal as it is possible to make it for both teams. There is nothing wrong with easy questions as well as hard ones, as long as they are the same in proportion for both teams.


Teams setting questions MUST ensure that the questions they provide are vetted by the other teams who are available for that purpose.
A League teams setting questions should use the B and C League teams as vetters, and likewise the B & C League teams should use each other and the A League team for vetting purposes.
The vetting process should involve a thorough examination and evaluation of the questions in terms of both suitable content and balance of difficulty. All reasonable changes suggested by the vetters SHOULD be taken into effect.
It will be made clear to all teams setting League game questions who their vetting team(s) are and question setting teams MUST provide a copy of their questions to the vetting team(s) no later than two weeks before the game is due to be played. This date will be made clear to all teams in the letter to question setters issued by the League Secretary.
The above rule will apply to all teams setting questions from Week 4 onwards. It is recognised that teams setting questions in the first three weeks of the season do not have as much notice of question setting as do teams in the remainder of the season.
This means that the team(s) setting questions in Week 4 will have a minimum of five weeks' notice of what is required of them whilst teams setting questions in subsequent weeks will have many weeks (and often many months) of notice.
In terms of Cup and Plate question setting, the two teams setting questions should use each other for vetting purposes as above. Each team should provide a copy of the questions they have set to the other setting team no later than one week before the game is due to be played.
If any of the above vetting procedure is not complied with, the Committee should be informed at the earliest opportunity.

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