Rules for the Regional Citizen Bee Competition
Students who are in the 9th -12th grades.
- The Constitution
- Documents and Supreme Court Cases
- Civic Values and Skills — Only tested in the written portion of the contest
- Current Events — Topics and range of dates are listed below. This will only be tested in the written portion of the contest.
Citizen Bee questions in the Current Events category will be based on a number of sources. There are no Study Guide entries for this category. For the Current Events portion of the Bee, study the following:
- National and world headline news stories from September 1, 2020 through February 19, 2021
- Major actions of Congress from September 1, 2020 to February 19, 2021
- Newsworthy stories related to the President of the United States
- The two U.S. Senators from Texas
- Current Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court
- Names of the heads of “the big four” Cabinet departments: State, Defense, Justice, and Treasury
- Major stories concerning the “big four” Cabinet departments
- Major leaders in both houses of the U.S. Congress for 2020 and 2021
- National and Texas elections and politics for 2020 and 2021
|Technology requirements to participate:
● The written and oral questioning rounds will both be administered using Zoom. It is the student’s responsibility to use a device that has audio and video capacity. (Suggestions for devices include computer OR tablet)
● Contestants must have internet connectivity.
● You will need to have a phone available on both days in case of problems with connectivity.
● If a contestant has an issue with these requirements please contact the regional coordinator for assistance.
General Rules and Procedures:
1. No reference material or electronic retrieval systems may be used during the written and oral rounds of the competition.
2. Procedures for the Written Test
- On the day of the test 15 minutes before the start time, students will open a previously emailed link to the Zoom meeting to make sure that they are connected and ready to participate.
- The link to the test will be given out once we have everyone on the Zoom call. The written test will be a 35 QUESTION multiple-choice test with each question worth 2 points. Students will have 20 minutes to answer the questions from the following categories: Documents and Supreme Court Cases, People and Civic Values and Skills, the Constitution, and Current Events. Students will receive a five-minute warning to help facilitate timely submission of the test. When students finish, they MUST hit SUBMIT. Failure to submit on time will prevent the responses from being recorded.
- The TEN students scoring the highest on the written test will advance to the oral rounds.
Students that advance will receive a link to participate in the oral round. They will not receive their written score until the completion of the oral competition.
- All students not advancing to the oral round will receive their written score that evening. Sponsors will also receive the student’s score.
3. Procedure for the Virtual Oral Question Rounds
- The three rounds of the oral questions will be conducted using Zoom. The rounds are:
– Documents and Supreme Court Cases
The Civic Values and Skills and Current Events categories are not part of the oral rounds.
- The order that each contestant will answer will be determined by the time the written test was submitted the previous day. Questions will be pre-drawn using a random generator for each category.
- New this year…. the student will be able to see the question they are to answer on their screen.
- The student has 60 seconds to answer. After 50 seconds a ten second warning will be given. A student may ask the moderator to repeat a question, or part of the question, or ask for a spelling of a word or name in the question, but that is considered part of the 60 seconds.
- The panel of judges will rule on the answer and base their ruling on a student’s first response at the end of the time or when a student answers. The head judge will raise a Correct sign to indicate a correct answer or an Incorrect sign to indicate an incorrect answer.
- If a student answers first, “I don’t know,” but then gives an answer, “I don’t know” will be considered the first response. The judges cannot ask a student to repeat, clarify, or elaborate an answer.
- New this year…. In the event of a screen freezing or a technical glitch, the head judge and regional coordinator will have the sole discretion to allow the student to restate the answer or require a new question to be asked.
- If the moderator asks for a student to give the name of a person, they must give the full name as it is listed on the website. Examples from the website include the following: if the answer is “John Quincy Adams,” “Adams” or “John Adams” would both be incorrect; if the answer is “John F. Kennedy,” JFK or Kennedy would not be correct. An example in current events would be if the question asked for the current governor of Texas, the answer would have to be “Greg Abbott.” Just “Abbott” would not be correct. Students will not be asked the name of a Supreme Court case in the oral round but will be asked questions related to the content of the case.
4. Appeal Procedure for the Virtual Oral Question Round
When the judges have rendered their decision, the student is allowed to appeal. Only a contestant may lodge an appeal, and only on an answer he or she has given. Notice of an appeal must be stated immediately after the decision of the judges on a question and before the next question begins. If a student wishes to appeal, he/she should state the intention to appeal and verbalize the reason for an appeal immediately following the judges’ decision. The judges will then take a brief timeout to discuss the appeal and render the decision which will be explained to the student with the reasoning. As soon as the appeal is decided, the next question will begin.
5. Tiebreakers for the Competition — The contest coordinator will use the following procedures in case a tie in either the written or oral competition:
WRITTEN Test Round
- Step 1 — Review the scores of the Constitution section to see if one student scored higher. If the tie remains, proceed to Step 2.
- Step 2 — Review the scores of the Documents and Supreme Court Case section to see if one student scored higher. If the tie remains, proceed to Step 3.
- Step 3 — Review the scores of the People, Civic Values and Skills section to see if one student scored higher. If the tie remains, proceed to Step 4.
- Step 4 — Review the scores of the Current Events sections to see if one student scored higher. If the tie remains, the students that are tied will advance to the Oral Competition.
ORAL Question Round
- Step 1 — Overall Written — The student with the higher score in the overall written component is declared the winner. If the tie remains, proceed to Step 2.
- Step 2 — Constitution Section — The student with the higher score in the Constitution section of the written component is declared the winner. If a tie remains, the judges proceed to Step 3.
- Step 3 — Documents and Supreme Court Cases Section — The student with the higher score in the Documents and Supreme Court cases section of the written component is declared the winner. If a tie remains, the judges proceed to Step 4.
- Step 4 — People Section — The student with the higher score in the People section of the written component is declared the winner.
In case of a tie for 1st through 3rd places after the four steps listed above the students who are tied will be notified to break the tie with a head to head questioning session from the four categories in the oral question round.
Disqualification—If, at any point, a student is disruptive, exhibits unsportsmanlike conduct, or is coached in any way the student is immediately disqualified from the competition.
Announcement of Awards
There will be a short break and then the announcement of awards for the first three places will take place.
1st Place — $250 gift card — Qualifies for the State Citizen Bee Competition
2nd Place — $100 gift card — Qualifies for the State Citizen Bee Competition if the 1st place cannot participate
3rd Place — $50 gift card — Qualifies for the State Citizen Bee Competition if the 1st and 2nd place cannot participate