BYU Spanish Language Bowl


A. A team must consist of five (5) members; teams will not be allowed to compete with fewer than five members. (You should assign two alternate members in case someone gets sick.) Once the competition has begun, there can be no substitutions beyond the use of the two alternates. Any school which registers more than one team per level must submit the names of the five team members and the two alternates with their registration. (As a reminder, team members should NOT be part of the SKIT competitions. They may participate in any of the other events except the SKITS.)

B. All questions will be asked in Spanish and will be appropriate to each level. All questions
will be selected at random from a pool of questions consiting of the following types of questions
in the proportions indicated:

40% grammar (including morphology and syntax)

Ex. –Ponga esta frase en el pretérito: “Ando hasta la plaza”.
(Ans. Anduve hasta la plaza.)
–Combine estas dos frases: “Es una lástima” y “Juan no sabe la verdad”.
(Ans. Es una lástima que Juan no sepa la verdad.)

30% geography, history, Culture, culture, current events

Ex.–¿Cuál es la capital del Perú? (Ans. Lima)
–¿Cuál fue la fecha del descubrimiento de América? (Ans. 12 de octubre de 1492)
–¿Quién pintó “Vista de Toledo”? (Ans. El Greco)
–¿En qué país hay mariachis? (Ans. México)
–¿Dónde mandan los sandinistas? (Ans. Nicaragua)

30% vocabulary, refranes, modismos

Ex. –¿Cómo se dice en español “the umbrella”? (Ans. el paraguas)
–Termine este refrán: “Dime con quien andas, …” (Ans. … y te diré quien eres.)
–¿Qué quiere decir “echar de menos” en inglés? (Ans. “To miss”)

Click here for more example questions.

C. Before starting the competition, the moderator will ascertain that all players of each team are legitimate, eligible contestants as defined by the language fair rules. Regardless of class in which enrolled, students who have had one year or more residence in a Spanish-speaking environment, have been part of an elementary school Immersion Program, or whose parents speak Spanish in the home, must be registered in Level NT, for Non-Traditional Learner.

D. Due to the large number of participating teams, it is important that you check the schedule upon arrival. It will be posted at several locations throughout the building. You must have your team in the proper room by the time the competition is scheduled to begin. Those teams which are not in place within four minutes of the scheduled time will forfeit.

E. The questioning will proceed according to the following format: the moderator will flip a coin to decide which team gets the first question.

1) LEAD-IN QUESTIONS: The moderator will then ask team “A” a lead-in question worth two (2) points. The first member of team “A” is to answer the lead-in question. If he or she cannot answer, the first member of team “B” has a chance to answer. Other team members cannot help the person whose turn it is to answer the lead-in question. If team “A” answers correctly, it will get a chance at a bonus question. If the member of team “A” cannot answer the lead-in question, the corresponding member of team “B” may attempt to answer. If team “B” member answers correctly, team “B” may then answer a bonus question and still recieve the next question which would correspond to its regular turn for a lead-in question. The first response will be considered the contestant’s answer.

2) BONUS QUESTIONS: Any member of the team is eligible to answer bonus questions. Bonus questions are worth one (1) point. Following a team’s opportunity to answer the bonus question, play will resume with a lead-in question to the team which is up next. The first response directed to the moderator, as determined by the moderator, will be considered the team’s answer.

F. TIME LIMIT – The team giving the answer must begin its response within 10 seconds. Thereafter, the team may continue its answer until correct. If, however, the team hesitates more than 10 seconds in answering, the answer will be judged as incorrect.

G. If the game time expires while a question or answer is being given, the moderator will allow play to proceed until the end of that question.

H. At the end of the playing time (10 minutes), the team with the most points will be declared the victor and will advance to the next round of competition.

I. In case of a tie at the end of the allotted time period, a “sudden-death” rule will be implemented. Lead-in questions will be alternated until a team misses. The first team to miss a question will lose the match. If the first team misses the first question, the other team automatically wins. THERE WILL BE NO BONUS QUESTIONS in the overtime period!

J. The decision of the moderator is final.

K. Due to the traditionally intense competition in the language bowl tournament, unfair practices
will merit disqualification and elimination as follows, determined by the moderator:

1) Inclusion of an ineligible team member, usually a Non-Traditional learner on a traditional team (ascertained at any time during the tournament).

2) Interference by a teacher, friend, or class member not on the team.

3) Use of recording devices or transcription of tournament questions by anyone associated with the school.

4) Fewer than 5 members on a team.

5) Failure to abide by any of the stated rules of the Language Bowl.