Exams at Varsity & JV Nationals

International Academic Competitions is pleased to announce a new addition to its annual Varsity and JV National Championships – the IAC Nationals Exams. Eleven different exams will be offered on various fields of history and science as explained below. Each exam will consist of 75 multiple choice questions with each correct answer worth 2 points, an incorrect response worth -1 point, and an answer left blank worth 0 points. The time limit will be 25 minutes for each exam. Ties will be broken through 3 tiebreaker questions with numerical answers. Each exam costs $20 and students will be ranked against other students in their age division. All students in 10th grade and younger at Varsity and JV Nationals will be considered JV students – there is no Middle School or Elementary Division on offer here (though there will also be a slate of exams at Middle & Elementary School Nationals in June). To register for the exams at the National Championships, please use the Varsity and JV Nationals Registration form available here. No prior qualification is needed to take any of the exams. Prizes will include medals, trophies, and book prizes for the top students.

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National Physics Exam

Fri. April 25 – 7:20-7:45am. All students must arrive between 7:05 and 7:18.
This exam will cover all aspects of a standard high school physics curriculum with particular emphasis placed on topics that are also covered in the AP Physics Exams. A distribution will be provided at a later date once the exam has been written. Topics covered will include optics, thermodynamics, mechanics, electromagnetism, nuclear physics, and more.

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National Ecology & Environmental Science Exam

Fri. April 24 – 11:55am-12:20pm. All students must arrive between 11:40 and 11:53.
This exam will cover all aspects of ecology and environmental science with particular emphasis placed on topics that are also covered on the AP Environmental Science Exam. A distribution will be provided at a later date once the exam has been written. Topics covered will include ecosystems, conservation biology, global warming and climate change, food webs, biogeochemistry, environmental degradation, biogeography, and human ecology.

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National Biology Exam

Sat. April 25 – 6:30-7:20am. All students must arrive between 6:15 and 6:28. Students also taking the National Chemistry Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover all aspects of a standard high school biology curriculum with particular emphasis placed on topics that are also covered in the AP Exam. A distribution will be provided at a later date once the exam has been written. Topics covered will include molecular and cellular biology, ecology, anatomy, taxonomy, evolution, genetics, and more.

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National Chemistry Exam

Sat. April 25 – 6:30-7:20am. All students must arrive between 6:15 and 6:28. Students also taking the National Biology Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover all aspects of a standard high school chemistry curriculum with particular emphasis placed on topics that are also covered in the AP Exam. A distribution will be provided at a later date once the exam has been written. Topics covered will include stoichiometry, nuclear chemistry, organic chemistry, bonding, the periodic table, and more.

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National African-American History Exam

Sat. April 25 – 7:30-8:20am. All students must arrive between 7:15 and 7:28. Students also taking the National Historical Geography Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover all aspects of African-American history from the colonial period to the present day. Those taking this exam should study famous African-Americans and related historical events from the fields of politics, business, sports and entertainment, science, the Civil Rights Movement, abolitionism, literature, the arts, and more. Once the exam has been written, a distribution will be provided to help guide students in their studying.

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National Historical Geography Exam

Sat. April 25 – 7:30-8:20am. All students must arrive between 7:15 and 7:28. Students also taking the National African-American History Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover the impact of geography on historical events, and examine questions of population movements, shifts in national and imperial borders, the spread of languages and religions, exploration and trade patterns, military campaigns, and more. A distribution will be provided once the exam has been written to guide students in their studying. Students can also view the questions on this page from the International History Olympiad as an additional study resource. Students taking part in the US Geography Championships and the International Geography Bee on Friday evening are encouraged to attend, as well as students competing in the National History Bee and Bowl.

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National Military History Exam

Sat. April 25 – 5:45-6:35pm. All students must arrive between 5:30 and 5:43. Students also taking the National Women’s History Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover all facets of military history from ancient civilizations to the present-day. In addition to battles and wars, questions will also cover military technology, strategy and tactics, and how military outcomes shaped the contours of history. US military history will be covered by approximately 30% of the questions. A distribution guide will be provided once the exam has been written to guide students with their preparation.

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National Women’s History Exam

Sat. April 25 – 5:45-6:35pm. All students must arrive between 5:30 and 5:43. Students also taking the National Military History Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover the history of women in the context of American history from the colonial period until the present day. Questions will focus on famous women and their contributions to American society, the women’s suffrage and women’s liberation movements, and questions of cultural and economic history. A distribution guide will be provided once the exam has been written to guide students with their preparation.

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National Asian History Exam

Sun. April 26 – 7:00-7:50am. All students must arrive between 6:45 and 6:58. Students also taking the National Latin American History Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover the full sweep of Asian history from the dawn of history in the Middle East, South Asia, and East Asia to the present-day. A distribution will be provided once the exam has been written to help guide students in their preparation. Approximately 25% of the exam will cover the history of China and approximately 25% of the exam will cover the history of India. Central Asia, Southeast Asia (including Indonesia), and the Middle East (including the Arabian Peninsula) will be treated as well.

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National Latin American History Exam

Sun. April 26 – 7:00-7:50am. All students must arrive between 6:45 and 6:58. Students also taking the National Asian History Exam as well have 50 minutes for both exams. Students taking only one exam have 25 minutes.
This exam will cover the history of Latin America, including all Caribbean islands, the Bahamas, and Bermuda, from the pre-colonial period to the present day. A distribution will be provided once the exam has been written to guide students in their studying. Questions will cover political, military, cultural, and diplomatic history. A portion of this exam (approximately 20%) will also cover the experience of Latinos and Latinas in the history of the USA.

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National Earth Science Exam

Version A – Fri. April 24 – 9:00-11:15am  All students must arrive between 8:45 and 8:58.
Version B – Part 1 – Fri. April 24 – 3:30-4:40pm  All students must arrive between 3:15 and 3:28

Version B – Part 2 – Fri. April 24 – 7:00-8:10pm  All students must arrive between 6:50 and 6:58.

Students competing in the US History Bee are only able to take Version B, which overlaps with the US History Bee playoffs. Students who have signed up for the Exam who make the US History Bee playoffs are obligated to compete in the US History Bee playoffs, though they will have their registration fees refunded.

This exam, which works on a different model from the others, is the national qualifying exam for the United States program that is part of the International Earth Science Olympiad. We will use it to select the top 36 students in the country to attend our summer training program held at the University of Vermont this July. Note that other students will be taking each version of the exam elsewhere as well. There will be champions from each exam version named in Arlington, but all students who take the Exam in Arlington will be ranked against other students taking both versions around the country to determine who qualifies for the summer training program. Last year, approximately 150 students took the exam.
From the summer program in Vermont, we select the top eight students each year to represent our country at the International Earth Science Olympiad, which will be held in Tyumen, Russia on August 16-26. The exam is two hours long, is split into two parts (there will be a bathroom break in the middle of Version A; after the break, you will not have access to part 1, and before the break you will not have access to part 2; Version B takes part at two separate times on the afternoon and evening of Friday, April 24), and consists of multiple choice questions as well as some short essays. It covers mineralogy, hydrology, geology, meteorology, oceanography and solar system astronomy. Interactions between the hydrosphere, lithosphere, atmosphere, cryosphere and solar system may be included. The exam is roughly 40% geosphere, 25% hydrosphere, 20% atmosphere, and 15% solar system astronomy. Please visit our web page USESO.org to find out more about our programs. An example of a previous qualifying exam is found here.
https://www.useso.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/USESO-2018.pdf

Some multiple choice questions will have more than one correct answer.  They will be marked as such. Each unmarked correct answer and each incorrect answer is -1 point.  The essay questions are used to determine if you posses content knowledge and can communicate in an organized format.  Grammar and (paragraph/essay) format count but minor spelling mistakes do not.  

Please visit our web page https://www.useso.org  for more information on how to prepare.