The winner of the School Bee takes a written test to qualify for state. (For more information, see the How Does It Work? page.)

The information covered in the written qualifying test is a combination of what is asked in the School Bee and what is asked in the State Bee. There will be some fairly easy questions (“A meteorologist is a person who studies what?”). But there will also be some more difficult questions (“Glasgow, an important shipping and industrial center, is located on what river?”).

All questions will have four options, and the student has one hour to complete the test. There are ten questions that pertain to a map that is printed inside the test booklet. (For examples, click here.)

United States

  1. Capitals, Major Cities, and Second-Tier Cities and their Locations (e.g., Detroit, Michigan; Omaha, Nebraska)

  2. Extremes (e.g., northernmost point, lowest point, geographic center)

  3. Landforms (e.g., Mohave Desert, Cumberland Gap)

  4. Bodies of Water (e.g., Colorado River, Lake Erie)

  5. Physical/Surface Features (e.g., Everglades, Ozark Plateau)

  6. Biomes and Vegetation

  7. Climate and Weather

  8. Landscape

  9. Culture

  10. History

  11. Exports and Resources

  12. Landmarks

  13. National Parks, National Monuments, National Seashores

  14. Terms (e.g., bog, condensation)


  1. Capitals and Major Cities (e.g., Budapest, Hungary; Lyon, France)

  2. Landforms (e.g., Kamchatka Peninsula, Gobi Desert, Karakorum Mountains, Okavango Delta)

  3. Bodies of Water (e.g., Aral Sea, Volta River, Denmark Strait)

  4. Physical/Surface Features (e.g., Malay Peninsula, Canadian Shield)

  5. Extremes (e.g., largest islands, longest rivers)

  6. Biomes and Vegetation (e.g. tropical rainforest in Colombia, savanna in Kenya)

  7. Climate and Weather (e.g., hot summers and cold winters of Mongolia, subtropical monsoon climate of Bangladesh)

  8. Landscape (e.g., tropical in Ecuador, dry in Australia, volcanoes in Iceland)

  9. Culture (e.g., sheep farming in New Zealand, pandas in China)

  10. History (e.g., fall of the Berlin Wall, break-up of Soviet Union)

  11. Exports and Resources (e.g., cotton from Egypt, technology from Japan)

  12. Politics (e.g., Gaza Strip, Somalia, Bosnian War)

  13. UNESCO World Heritage Sites (e.g., Uluru in Australia, Iguazu National Park)

  14. Landmarks (e.g., Coliseum in Rome, Gold Coast of Africa)

  15. Current Events (e.g., last year’s Nobel Prize winner, last presidential election)

For examples of the types of questions you will find in the written qualifier test, see this page.