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Knowledge? Or lack there of?

For about 8-9 months now, I have been the 'Quiz Master' for my Church, and in that space, I've put together and run four trivia nights.  If you're unaware of the awesome concept that is a trivia night, basically, you put together a table of 6 to 8 people and that is your team.  Your team competes against other teams in answering trivia questions, presented by a Quiz Master, with the goal of scoring points for correct answers.  There are many ways to run them, I tend to have rounds of 10 questions with some bonus material in between. 

Friday night was the fourth one I ran, and all in all, it ran pretty well.  However, I've hit a bit of a stumbling block in my preparation or how to go about the next one should the occasion arise.  The problem is that there seems to be an age rift in knowledge.  Definitely on Friday night, there was an issue with the questions I had, where a team of, shall we say, elderly people, of ages at least 55+ struggled to do well.  On some rounds they did well, and better than others, but over all, they finished sixth out of seven teams.  The ages of the other tables averaged probably in the high 30's to 40's.  The winning table was of the latter age bracket, with the second place team (by a single point) would have averaged around 18.

My problem is that while roughly 70% of the people were able to do well on the questions I provided, the people that didn't were aged over 55.  What would be a sufficient solution? Introduce more factual questions such as locations, geography and science, at the expense of entertainment, movies and music, or introduce questions from a closer era to these people?  The former would mean that the table in question probably would have done a lot better, making the top 4 teams a lot closer.  The latter would mean the older people would do better and the younger people wouldn't do so well.

As a side point, an element of the bonus material I sometimes provide in between rounds is a 'Guess that tune' sort of thing, where I play a clip of music, and the teams have to write down the name of the song/piece of music.  The order of teams was about the same (give or take a few differences) as the overall points from the rounds, but the 'elderly' table scored dismally (about 10% correct compared to average of 60%) - However, the music, in their defence, was probably a bit too newish for them (One comment I overheard from the table while playing the intro to Meatloaf's Bat out of Hell was "That's not music, that's just noise" kind of sums it up).

Definitely something to ponder the next time I drag out the trivia notes.

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Yeah, the music round may unfairly discriminate against them.

How many songs do you play?

The music rounds were split into two bonus rounds there were not counted towards the total score from the rounds. In all, there were 34 songs, in which Niall actually helped select. They weren't all 'new' songs, but some where.

The songs I used ranged from well known classical music (like Fur Elise) and some Jazz like 'Take Five'. Then most were songs ranging from Led Zeppelin's stairway to heaven and Meatloaf's Bat out of hell to the pet shop boys and some new stuff. I knew they would struggle on the new stuff, but thought they would at least get 50% of them... I was wrong.

maybe they are just from bathurst?

I'd suggest more factual questions; still an even playing field for everyone (I personally despise pop-culture questions at quiz nights, mind you, so I'm biased). For the music round, if you're including Bat out of Hell, just include Vera Lynn as well. The kind of person who knows Bat out of Hell is much less likely to recognise A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square, and vice versa, and again fairness is achieved.


I play trivia at uni every tuesday.
I yelled at the guy whow as doing it cause he couldnt pronounce constantinople.

Just a question I've been wanting to ask since the first time I saw you as Chris's friend: is your username supposed to sound like wasim akram the pakistani cricketer? Or is it pure co-incidence?


Yes it is.
I was but a silly 14 year old cs player who couldnt spell when my name first appeared.

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