How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

This forum is for anyone seeking advice on starting a collegiate team, branching out into new types of tournaments, or other "how-to" aspects of collegiate quizbowl.
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zelsc2014
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How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

Post by zelsc2014 » Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:28 am

I am currently a senior in high school, and I plan on attending Johns Hopkins University in the fall. In all honesty, I would consider myself a decent high school quiz bowl player, but I was wondering how can I make the transition from being a ~70pp high school player to being a respectable college player.

When it comes to studying, I put in a lot of time, and I do a lot of packet reading, notecarding, and sparknoting . However, I find the latter two to be really tedious, and I've really gotten into the habit of simply reading things that come up (books, poems, short stories, histories, etc). This isnt extremely efficient, but I find it fulfilling.

Anyways, I would really appreciate any advice on how to become a decent college quiz bowl player.
Demere
St. Charles Prep '14
Johns Hopkins '18

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Re: How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

Post by Guile Island » Tue Apr 08, 2014 10:33 am

Personally, a whole year of playing college questions this last year has really helped me improve and get a grasp on the expanded canon. I guess when it comes to studying you do whatever helps you learn best, but there's simply more you have to learn in college quizbowl. Easier tournaments like ACF Fall or MFT are also good ways to get an idea of what to expect in college quizbowl without getting thrown into the lions' den of a tougher regular tourney.

EDIT: Also, this may be more relevant/get more noticed in Collegiate Discussion, if a moderator wants to make a judgement on that.
Dylan Minarik
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Re: How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

Post by a bird » Tue Apr 08, 2014 12:00 pm

Goole by-election, 1971 wrote:Personally, a whole year of playing college questions this last year has really helped me improve and get a grasp on the expanded canon.
As Dylan said, if you read a bunch of regular difficulty college packets, you'll probably get a sense of some of the things that come up in College quizbowl but are absent at the high school level. Since the cannon is so much larger, you may want to focus on one area of interest to focus your studies.

As someone who was in your shoes last year, I understand that it can be intimidating. My advice is to just jump in. Even if they seem hard, try to play a bunch of tournaments and learn things that come up.
zelsc2014 wrote:I've really gotten into the habit of simply reading things that come up (books, poems, short stories, histories, etc). This isnt extremely efficient, but I find it fulfilling.
If you find it fulfilling to read works that come up in quizbowl as a form of studying, then by all means continue. Generally speaking actually reading works provides deep knowledge which can be important at the collegiate level.
Graham Reid
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zelsc2014
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Re: How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

Post by zelsc2014 » Thu Apr 10, 2014 5:43 pm

Thanks guys. I appreciate the advise.
Demere
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Re: How to transition from high school to college quiz bowl

Post by bradleykirksey » Wed May 14, 2014 2:50 pm

a bird wrote:
zelsc2014 wrote:I've really gotten into the habit of simply reading things that come up (books, poems, short stories, histories, etc). This isnt extremely efficient, but I find it fulfilling.
If you find it fulfilling to read works that come up in quizbowl as a form of studying, then by all means continue. Generally speaking actually reading works provides deep knowledge which can be important at the collegiate level.
Which I guess brings up the question of why are you quiz bowling anyways, right? Is winning matches really a means to an end and the reason you put in all the time and money? If so, and I guess there might be people who are, then that's a terrible strategy. But if you're looking to hang out with quiz bowl people, get smarter, and enjoy yourself, then reading 100 Years of Solitude or Catch 22 is actually a lot of fun and a great thing to do.

I'd like to echo the sentiments above about reading packets. Particularly packets of tournaments you plan on playing that year. (Previous editions of, not Watkinsing it obviously). What I've done personally is carved out a niche of things that I'm really good at and my teammates aren't, read those packets, and then found the relevant answer lines and plugged them into http://quizbowldb.com/search . I suppose that if you wanted to make flashcards then on leadins and recurring clues, that would be helpful too. I don't know how that would work with a large distribution and a large canon, but a few years of Bible study and that method have kept me from losing a tossup on anything Protestant in about 2 years.

Of course, I really like your idea of reading the source material. Even if you only get 30 PPG instead of 35, you're getting more out of this than the guy scouring quizbowldb with a deck of 1,000 flashcards.
Bradley Kirksey
Mayor of quiz bowl at the University of Central Florida (2010-2015)

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