grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by grapesmoker »

Inkana7 wrote: It's not ICT, but at this year's EFT there was this nifty really poorly conceived bonus part:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
Fixed that.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by The Ununtiable Twine »

grapesmoker wrote:Oh, you can't be bothered to attend ACF Regionals because you don't want to write packets? And your team is full of terrible players? What a surprising development!
Actually, one of my best friends committed suicide and I didn't feel like playing quizbowl for some time and seriously contemplated retirement. There are things in life that are more important than quizbowl, and I had some personal issues to deal with while also getting way behind on schoolwork, so our packet editing went to shit, I apologize to the quizbowl gods. I don't like discussing personal things on the forums but seriously this is fucking insulting. Especially since I actually still found a way to get up and play Penn Bowl (said tragedy happened just three days before), had a horrible fucking tournament, shorthanded, and we were still two tossups away from going 8-3. So let's not call Alabama terrible, because we're not. We might not be the best team in the world, but we're far from terrible.
There's no rationale that says "grad students >>> undergrads," for all values of "grad student" and "undergrad," and that's easily verified by doing simple things like looking up statistics (and also using a modicum of common sense).


Agreed, completely.
Fortunately no one is dumb enough to take you seriously so I guess we can all enjoy this exciting excursion into what goes on in Alabama quizbowl.


Exactly what does the opinion of a former member of the club have to do with our team? I don't even think James knows what goes on in Alabama quizbowl for the most part, so how the hell could YOU make such assumptions about what does? The opinions of James Johnson and the opinions of members of AAQT should not, under any circumstances, be assumed to be the same thing. Thinking that they are is illogical as his only current affiliation is as a former member.
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This method works fairly well. I endorse it for anyone who wants to get better at canon topics.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Bartleby »

Scipio wrote:
Bartleby wrote:
Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:
graduate programs tend to be broader than you imply, like American History to 1865 or Military History
Is this true? Do actual, real-life history grad students study 200 years of history or an entire type of history? I've never, ever, ever, ever heard of this. The broadest my soon-to-be chem PhD program gets is that I'll be taking around five classes my first year. They'll all be organic chemistry classes, now, but...
Although history students pursuing higher education than a BA are probably extremely well-versed in all aspects of the history of their field (let's say for instance that I want to pursue a Ph.D in US History... I will probably take as many US Undergrad courses as I can fit into my schedule), it is not true to say that grad programs encompass things like "Military History". For instance, one of my TAs is pursuing a Ph.D in military history, which sounds quite broad, but her specific thesis is on the Canadian Cavalry in WWI. I would argue that Ph.D students in history are not much more, if at all more well-versed than a well-read undergrad, except in the specific thing which they're pursuing as a field of study. These fields, as stated, are not simply as broad as "military history". If I ever see a question on the Canadian Cavalry at ICT, I will shit.
Because I think I can claim some small expertise in this area, I'd like to weigh in here; if nothing else, it might be useful for future history graduate students.

Andy asked whether "real-life history grad students study 200 years of history or an entire type of history?" The answer to that is manifold, and while all practically everything depends on where you study, generally speaking these rules apply.

If what you mean by what you "study" is "in what things do you gain the most knowledge", than at the Ph.D. level this is defined by the topic of your dissertation. Dissertations vary; sometimes they investigate a millenia of events, sometimes a single year/month/day. In my case, what I study is roughly defined as 146-77 BCE.

Before you get to the dissertation, you have to take qualifying examinations usually involving mammoth reading lists. Almost always there are more than one of these (I took five), because it makes you more employable; those who can teach Rome but not Greece are at a disadvantage to those who can teach both. Moreover, these examination fields will often include the so-called "outside" field, because that gives one training for teaching a survey class outside of one's geographical/termporal focus, which also helps gaining employment; thus, mine included Ancient Rome (A.U.C. to Diocletian), Ancient Greece (Minoans to Pydna), Late Antique, Ancient technology, and American law (whereby I have enough American history knowledge that I can teach US surveys). In that sense, my graduate program was "broad", as James implies, although in a sense still pretty narrow; I studied nothing in Europe after 500 CE, and nothing in America beyond facts surrounding important laws and court cases.

Before you get to the examinations, you do coursework; however, most of that is tailored towards helping you in your examination fields, so my classes were in the fields I just mentioned. I would like to add, however, that at many institutions "graduate classes" are either a) senior-level undergraduate classes, with graduate students participating but expected to do more work (like an extra paper), or b) very specific topical classes, like a seminar, whose focus is so narrow that it gives almost no quizbowl knowledge (I'll be damned if my epigraphy class has helped me answer a tossup on anything; there simply arem't questions on estampages or the way Corinth provided dates on its inscriptions).

The long and the short of it is that my doctorate in history offers me only the narrowest of quizbowl advantages in my own field over a dedicated undergraduate; I have more knowledge of my field of Roman history, of course, but at a level of specificity such that it almost never comes up in quizbowl (and if someone ever does write a tossup on the battle of the River Liris, I will probably be too distracted weeping for joy even to answer it). Essentially, my advantage would come from the fact that the classes undergraduate history majors are taking I already will have taken, but with the drawback that I took them years ago (decades in my case; sigh). If there are real demonstrable advantages in my case, it comes from playing experience, not coursework.

Therefore, if my experience is similar to other history students, I would suggest that an undergraduate on the make with three years of tournament experience would therefore probably be more than a match for a graduate student who just started playing, even in his own degree field; this says nothing of the many other fields in which the undergraduate veteran would have accumulate knowledge that the graduate neophyte would not.

Does that make sense?
Exactly. What I thought of last night as I was trying to sleep, to explain the difference, is that graduate courses give a stronger focus (I would argue) on the historiography of topics, and are, as you say, often extraordinarily specialized. I mean, Stonewall Jackson always died at Chancellorsville, and there's no way that a grad student knows that any better than an undergrad.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

DarkMatter wrote:
grapesmoker wrote:Oh, you can't be bothered to attend ACF Regionals because you don't want to write packets? And your team is full of terrible players? What a surprising development!
Actually, one of my best friends committed suicide and I didn't feel like playing quizbowl for some time and seriously contemplated retirement. There are things in life that are more important than quizbowl, and I had some personal issues to deal with while also getting way behind on schoolwork, so our packet editing went to shit, I apologize to the quizbowl gods. I don't like discussing personal things on the forums but seriously this is fucking insulting.
Fortunately no one is dumb enough to take you seriously so I guess we can all enjoy this exciting excursion into what goes on in Alabama quizbowl.


Exactly what does the opinion of a former member of the club have to do with our team? I don't even think James knows what goes on in Alabama quizbowl for the most part, so how the hell could YOU make such assumptions about what does? The opinions of James Johnson and the opinions of members of AAQT should not, under any circumstances, be assumed to be the same thing. Thinking that they are is illogical as his only current affiliation is as a former member.
You noticed that whole thing where Jerry talking about Alabama not going to regionals was in response to James specifically saying when he was at Alabama, his teammates didn't want to write the packets necceessary to do so, right? I'm sorry your friend killed himself, but do you understand when you get up in arms about everything when it doesn't even have anything to do with anything you said or did, you look ridiculous?
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Important Bird Area »

grapesmoker wrote:
Inkana7 wrote: It's not ICT, but at this year's EFT there was this nifty really poorly conceived bonus part:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
Fixed that.
I agree with Jerry; while this answer is both awesome and important, it's way too hard for an EFT bonus part. Also, "was part of at one point" is not a helpful clue; you would be better off with something specific like "Prince Charles is this regiment's colonel-in-chief," but even that isn't really identifiable (British royals are ceremonial colonels-in-chief to lots of military formations all over the former British empire). And once you start adding legitimate clues like "it was formed as a volunteer unit during the Boer War" it starts to become obvious that this is a CO-level hard part.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Ike »

I agree with Jerry; while this answer is both awesome and important, it's way too hard for an EFT bonus part. Also, "was part of at one point" is not a helpful clue; you would be better off with something specific like "Prince Charles is this regiment's colonel-in-chief," but even that isn't really identifiable (British royals are ceremonial colonels-in-chief to lots of military formations all over the former British empire). And once you start adding legitimate clues like "it was formed as a volunteer unit during the Boer War" it starts to become obvious that this is a CO-level hard part.
I'm quite sure that Prince Charles was colonel-in-chief of many things such as the Royal Regiment of Wales. Either way, my main goal of the clues was to get the player to conclude it was somehwere out of Canada, equestrian in nature. Either way, it is pretty hard, and I merely conceived of it as a hard part to a geography bonus instead of some feature of Canada. Watch out Jerry its coming to the next packet near you.

Also, this thread sucks. I personally feel Jerry should be awarded some kind of medal for chewing these people out. Its demeaning to everyone who actually takes the time to learn things and engage in an intellectual culture. Obviously I too am sad that someone's friend died but watching people claim in some way that it prevents them from getting smarter is pretty much a dumb thing to say and something that I feel that was brought up only in order to shield people from attacking him because of its sensitive nature.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

What the fuck are panda buzzers?
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Maxwell Sniffingwell »

Jeremy Gibbs Freesy Does It wrote:What the fuck are panda buzzers?
Google suggests http://www.hazydaze.net/manga/trans/ohoshi2.txt and http://manga.animea.net/ohoshisama-ni-o ... age-4.html .

Anyone who speaks Japanese want to translate the second panel of page 4 - the writing above "Number 32."?
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant »

轉 means "turn"-- I guess it applies to the rolling of dice as well. I've got nothing for the first character of the second phrase; it must be altered from the original Chinese.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by The Ununtiable Twine »

Ike wrote:
Also, this thread sucks. I personally feel Jerry should be awarded some kind of medal for chewing these people out. Its demeaning to everyone who actually takes the time to learn things and engage in an intellectual culture. Obviously I too am sad that someone's friend died but watching people claim in some way that it prevents them from getting smarter is pretty much a dumb thing to say and something that I feel that was brought up only in order to shield people from attacking him because of its sensitive nature.
Do you think I'm afraid of people on the forums attacking me? I said that because it was the truth. Since I authored the statement I will say that I did so because I was personally offended by what was said by the poster. Several of us have worked hard to try to help bring about a new culture at Alabama and when these insults about our program and/or its past come up, I just feel like certain forum personalities sometimes try to devalue everything that we work hard to do. That can be very painful to endure, especially when you're trying to bring quality quizbowl to the region, which we have done by being a decent team and running tournaments with no little to no logistical problems, and we do receive a good bit of praise for this. Some of the people on the boards like to get on our program for various things (former members, our perceived talent level, perceived work ethic, whatever other crazy thing is made up on these boards), but you never see me or any member of our club bashing people because they screwed up a tournament. Just because we do a better job of hosting than most teams doesn't mean we feel like we have the liberty to bash people that aren't as good at it as us. Weiner and Vinokurov have definitely been noted for such disasters, but they seem to have been forgiven, so I hope people can see that we have moved on from our past and forgive us for what happened in the past.

I was extremely saddened for a few weeks, and my friend's death happened right in the middle of quizbowl season, sadly enough. I'm doing better now, and look forward to the end of the season and the beginning of the next, and so on and so forth. Things like this have happened to me before (and I'm sure most of you), and when they do, I tend to want to do nothing for quite some time. I hope nothing like that ever happens to you or has happened to you, it's a very tragic thing, and you may very well feel the same way. No, Ike, it's not a dumb thing to say. Sometimes even the most motivated of people can temporarily lose their motivation due to these things. Maybe you are not one of those people, but it happens.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by Mechanical Beasts »

DarkMatter wrote:Weiner and Vinokurov have definitely been noted for such disasters, but they seem to have been forgiven, so I hope people can see that we have moved on from our past and forgive us for what happened in the past.
I'm usually not the first person to defend... really anything that has to do with Matt, but he runs unbelievably efficient tournaments at VCU. How many a year--five? seven? That one ACF Nationals had some trouble, some of which was his fault and a lot of which wasn't. What tournament has Jerry fucked up? The one tournament I can think of is ECSO but the only thing that was sad about ECSO was about half the editing, and that wasn't really Jerry's problem and it happened four years ago.

Look, let's say that you're actually St. Sundberg when it comes to hosting, and that is so saintly that it makes up for the wacko shit this thread is actually about (because this thread is actually not a referendum on your or Alabama's hosting ability). Don't totally ruin what credibility you had by making shit up.
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by The Ununtiable Twine »

Crazy Andy Watkins wrote:
DarkMatter wrote:Weiner and Vinokurov have definitely been noted for such disasters, but they seem to have been forgiven, so I hope people can see that we have moved on from our past and forgive us for what happened in the past.
I'm usually not the first person to defend... really anything that has to do with Matt, but he runs unbelievably efficient tournaments at VCU. How many a year--five? seven? That one ACF Nationals had some trouble, some of which was his fault and a lot of which wasn't. What tournament has Jerry fucked up? The one tournament I can think of is ECSO but the only thing that was sad about ECSO was about half the editing, and that wasn't really Jerry's problem and it happened four years ago.

Look, let's say that you're actually St. Sundberg when it comes to hosting, and that is so saintly that it makes up for the wacko shit this thread is actually about (because this thread is actually not a referendum on your or Alabama's hosting ability). Don't totally ruin what credibility you had by making shit up.
My point is that they have been forgiven, whereas some people like to continuously criticize us with strange comments. That's my point. I'm sure people will make references to us in the near future. I'm not saying Matt or Jerry have had consistent problems, but I'm saying that things happen. I could have probably used some better examples, too. I'm sure they're both exceptional tournament directors, I'm just saying that mistakes are made. Some people/organizations make more mistakes than others, that doesn't mean they have to be reminded of them constantly. Half of the better teams in a region disappear and the rest of the region gets bashed. We can't make them reappear. Read the end of the Southeastern quizbowl thread if you haven't already, especially Eric's post.

By the way, I was awakened to cries of "Watkins has commented on your post." Thanks for waking me up in time to watch some b-ball. I won't call you out for an embarrassing loss anytime in the near future. I have enough credibility.
Jake Sundberg
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Re: grad students in quizbowl thread #32343

Post by geekjohnson »

This was never about grad students in quizbowl or the manner which teams practice or what tournaments they attend. I am sorry to have wasted everyone's time with this obviously unimportant tangent. I never intended to step on toes, just offer a piece of my opinion on the matter. I feel the restructuring I talked of what benefit the game allowing for more equalized competition and also keep more players interested past their year in D2. Not that all lose it, but just thinking utilitarian-like. never said anything about grad players being forced out or commenting on something like other programs' validity. i would be happy if naqt at least put something asking about the scenario on the surveys, but if not what can you do? in contrast to Ike's appraisal that Jerry deserves an award for chewing out people that "undermine" their work...fuck it. i worked hard while at ua to start the program, get funding, plan and run tournaments (along with my fellow officers), attend tournaments and try to qualify for ICT. we were a success in our aims and happy at the time. whatever the view some elitists may possess is disheartening, but just as meaningless as they purport me or ua to have been.
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