Academic Team Overview
Loveland’s Academic Team, an Ohio High School Athletic Association winter sport, is fascinating to watch and a ton of fun to be a part of. They compete against other schools on Wednesdays at 4:00 PM, with home matches in the library.
Each match has four rounds, with four players per team allowed in each round. The first two are the category rounds, with Round One having the categories American Literature, Math, World History, Fine Arts, and Life Science, and Round Two having World Literature, Government/Economics, Physical Science, Geography, and American History. Each category gives each team the opportunity to answer a question and ends with a toss-up question, which teams must be the first to buzz in to answer. The next round is the Alphabet Round, in which teams are given 4 minutes to answer 20 questions
written on a sheet of paper, with all answers beginning with the same letter. The final round is the Lightning Round, where there are 20 questions that are like the earlier toss-up questions
which require teams to be the first to buzz in. This presents the dilemma of when to buzz, as if teams choose to buzz with incomplete information, they may get the answer wrong, but if they wait until the end of the question, then the other team may buzz first. At the end of the match, the team that has the highest score wins.
Loveland has two teams, a Varsity and a Junior Varsity team with the main difference being that the Junior Varsity questions are geared more towards underclassmen, with Varsity questions being geared more toward upperclassmen. Both compete with teams at schools across the Eastern Cincinnati Conference, with Varsity and Junior Varsity both playing 2 matches each week.
Alex Loja (12), a member of the Varsity team, says that he enjoys “being able to compete with other schools over the levels of intelligence,” especially “with people who think similarly to me.” His favorite memory on the team was when he was “curling the lobby tables in front of competitors to intimidate them” before a match. Aaron Spjut (11), a member of the Junior Varsity team, enjoys being on the team because it’s “a welcome place to be after school,” and it allows him to “feel like I’m utilizing my time effectively.” Spjut’s favorite memory on the team was “when JV got all 20 questions right in the alphabet round.”
If you want to try out some Academic Team questions, here are some from past rounds (click the arrow to reveal the answers):
1. States such as Kentucky and Virginia are among 4 states that use this designation instead of calling themselves states
2. Hans Christian Anderson’s story, “The Snow Queen” was the inspiration for what hit 2013 film about a princess whose magical powers allow her to create and manipulate snow and ice?
3. Independence, Missouri marked the starting point for what famous trail, which many American settlers traveled along in covered wagons during the mid-1800s on their way to a namesake territory in the Pacific Northwest?
The Oregon Trail