Regionals 2017-02-12T14:03:07+00:00

The Regional level of the European Division of The International Geography Bee consists of the Championships Qualifying Exam (CQE). For all age divisions, the rules are the same. The questions used are the same as well for each age division, though students are only ranked against other students in their same age division. The Exam has two separate version called Alpha and Beta.

Each Exam has 50 multiple-choice questions with 4 possible answers to each question, and students always have 20 minutes to compete. Students receive 2 points for a correct answer, 0 points for an answer left blank, and -1 point for an incorrect response.

The CQE is always offered at tournament sites for the International History Bee and Bowl’s European regional tournaments, a list of which is available here. The version of the CQE that is offered at each tournament site corresponds to the question site being used that day for the IHBB tournament (which are also called Alpha and Beta). Students may also take either the Alpha or Beta version of the CQE at their place of study with either a homeschool instructor or teacher proctoring it. Costs of the CQE vary from country to country, but are generally about 15 Euros or equivalent in local currency to take it at a tournament site, or 25 Euros equivalent in local currency to take it with a teacher or homeschool proctor at a student’s usual place of study. Contact for exact prices in each country.
Teachers can also sign up an entire class for the CQE which costs 75 Euros or local currency equivalent for one class of students. For the entire school, it costs 150 Euros or local currency equivalent. Within Germany, it is free for schools to administer it in the 2016-2017 and the 2017-2018 school years, as Germany will be hosting the 2018 International Geography Bee World Championships. If you are interested in either of these options, please email

Note that students qualify for the European Championships by finishing in the top half of students in their age division who take their respective version of the CQE at any given tournament site. If there is an odd number of students, or if two students tie for the last spot, we “round up” so that 4 students out of 7 would qualify, for example, unless there was a tie for 4th place, in which case 5 (or more, if more than two students tied for 4th) would qualify. Students can also qualify by finishing in the top half among all students in Europe who take the CQE within their age division for any given exam. These median scores are calculated for Alpha and Beta Sets for all students who have taken an Exam by April 10.

Registration is not required for students to take the CQE at an IHBB Europe tournament site – they may simply show up at the tournament site and take the Exam there (be sure to arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of the scheduled lunch break, or at the Doors Open time if it is an after school event on a weekday)

To take the CQE at a student’s school or with a homeschool instructor, please email for further instructions.

Students who take an exam at their school or with a homeschool proctor may only qualify on the basis of finishing in the top half nationally on that version of the Exam (students who take the Exam at a tournament site can also qualify as mentioned, by being in the top half of students in their age division on an Exam at that site).

An official sample version of the CQE is available here together with its answer key. For further practice resources, see the past Exams on the US Geography Olympiad website here. Note that these Exams have more of a focus on the geography of the USA than we will have on the CQE in Europe. Roughly 30-40% of the questions on the CQE will focus on the geography of Europe; the other questions will focus on the geography of other parts of the world.