Quiz Questions

What is a general knowledge question ?

The quiz currently has over 1,000 questions and we are adding more all the time. One of the difficult aspects of adding questions - apart from getting the right of course - is to try and make sure that they are general knowledge. This means that people are likely to know the answer or be able to intelligently guess the answer.

Definition of general knowledge

The term is defined in many instances as an understanding of important knowledge across a wide subject range. Which, in short, means you need to know a lot about all sorts of things. When we add the questions, we take this to mean that the knowledge you would need to answer the questions is something that is of value. We try and avoid questions, for example, on current 'celebrity' goings on and focus more on historically significant events. Perhaps you could argue that these are things that may have been taught in school or college.

This doesn't mean that you need to have read an encyclopedia to take the quiz - although that would help of course. More perhaps that you might find the answers to the questions in an encyclopedia rather than a gossip magazine.

Guessing the right answer

Clearly, there's a large number of questions where people will not know the answer. Many of the questions in the quiz are actually quite difficult. To get around this, we do a number of things.

We reduce the number of answers which makes it statistically more likely that you would get the right answer. Typically, the most difficult questions will only have three or four possible answers. Some of the easier questions will have five possible answers.

We then add one or two answers that are fairly obviously wrong. In some cases we may make one of the answers a joke or something quite daft. The other one or two might then be clearly wrong with a little thought.

Which usually leaves only two possible options that it could be. In these cases, it might be ultimately be a guess but you will be down to 50/50.

Question choice

The way this general knowledge quiz is structured means that the questions are chosen completely at random. The alogorithm doesn't look at the questions you have had before. It would, in theory, be possible to get all the questions related to geography or sport for example. In reality, with the quantity of questions available this isn't likely. However, it will always be the case that some question sets will be more difficult than others. The only way around this is to keep taking the test.

General knowledge isn't the same for everyone

Quite true. One of the factors that affects general knowledge is geographical location. A question about the Houses of Parliament in London for someone in the US is not ideal.

There's two points here. The first is that we try and make sure that geographically related questions are of a global nature. Something that anyone would understand such as Everest being the world's highest mountain or the South Pole being located in Antarctica. These are well known, globally understood facts.

The second is that we are gradually splitting the quiz into different regions so that we have a US General Knowledge Quiz and also now an Indian General Knowledge Quiz. This means that all three of our quizzes (including this one) can have more regionally orientated questions and challenge local knowledge a bit better.

More regional quizzes

It's possible that we will add some additional quiz locations in the near future. People prefer to see regional questions even if we only add one or two into the set. It's easy for us to do.

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