Regionals for the Middle School and Elementary School Divisions

The Regional stage for the Middle and Elementary School Divisions of the US Geography Championships consists of the Qualifying Exam, for which there are 3 different versions this year. Students only need to qualify for Nationals on any one version. The NQE is a 50 question multiple choice exam. Students receive 2 points for a correct answer, zero points for an answer left blank or an incorrect answer (there are no negative points for incorrect answers for the 2020-2021 academic year on the Middle or Elementary School Qualifying Exams). Students have 20 minutes to take the Exam.

The three Middle School and Elementary School versions of the Qualifying Exam (i.e. D-F Sets) are likewise meant to be comparable in length and difficulty. For 2020-2021, students need to finish in the top 60% of each version of each exam in their age group to qualify for Nationals. These minimum qualifying scores will be determined on January 1 for F Set, February 1 for E Set, and March 1 for D Set.

Students may also qualify for the 2020 USGC Middle School and Elementary Division National Championships by qualifying for the USGC Junior Varsity Division’s National Championships on the A, B, or C Set version of the National Qualifying Exam.

The cost of the Qualifying Exam is $10 (plus a small credit card charge) to take any version of the Varsity or JV National Qualifying Exam. If you cannot pay by credit card, and wish to pay by check instead, please send a check for $10 per Exam version per student made out to “International Academic Competitions” to the following address:

15 Lafayette Place
Burlington, VT 05401

Along with the check, include a piece of paper with the student’s name and school (or indicate if they are homeschooled), their birthdate and grade (to determine their division), a contact email for the student or their parent(s), and the name and email of the proctor. If you have multiple students who wish to take the Exam, please supply this information for each student.

Please also indicate which Exam Version(s) is/are requested – note that A, B, and C Set are Varsity and JV Division Exams and are open to all students. D, E, and F Set are Middle School and Elementary School Division Exams and are only open to students in those divisions (and thus cannot qualify students for the Varsity or JV National Championships).

Once we receive the check or the credit card payment, we will schedule a time for the student to take the exam. If the score falls above the National Minimum Qualifying Score for the division the student is in on the version of the Exam they take, then they will qualify for Nationals, and we will let you know that by early-mid January for C and F Set Exams, early-mid February for B and E Set Exams, and early-mid March for A and D Set Exams.

Note that the F Set version of the Middle School and Elementary School National Qualifying Exam is offered free of charge to students competing in the Online Regional Qualifying Exam prior to their Regional Finals for the National History Bee or National Science Bee through their sponsor.

The D Set is open free of charge to students competing in the National History Bee regional finals, and the E Set is open free of charge to students competing in the National Science Bee regional finals. If students are not competing in these events, then they must pay the $10 fee per Exam version.


Sample Exams & Answer KeysClick here to find sample Qualifying Exam questions and answers for the Middle School & Elementary Divisions