Why should I Take the NBBC Qualifying Test?

July 6, 2022

If you’re participating in the National Bible Bee Summer Study, you’ve probably heard of the NBBC Qualifying Test, and you may be wondering why you should take it. After all, if the NBBC Qualifying Test is intended to determine who will be invited to complete at the National Bible Bee Competition (NBBC), why should someone who isn’t hoping to bother with taking the test? Or you may be wondering what exactly the NBBC Qualifying Test is about and how it’s set up. Let’s look at those questions in order. 

What is the NBBC Qualifying Test?

The NBBC Qualifying Test is an online, multiple choice test that covers the material participants studied during the Summer Study. It consists of 100 questions to answer in a set time limit – 60 minutes for Primaries, 50 minutes for Juniors, and 40 minutes for Seniors. The test will be available from 8 a.m.  August 12 to 3 p.m. August 15 (times in CDT). Participants should allow plenty of time to take it in case of technical difficulties; also, it is preferable to take it during business hours so that help is available, should you encounter problems.

The results from the test determine who will be invited to compete at the National Bible Bee Competition. The 120 participants with the highest scores in each age division will be invited to compete at the National Bible Bee Competition. If any of the qualifiers are unable to attend, alternates will be invited, starting from the highest non-qualifying score. For more information about the NBBC Qualifying Test and the rules to ensure test integrity, please read pages 9-18 of the NBB Summer Study Guidebook found on your dashboard.

Why should I take it?

While many participants take the NBBC Qualifying test with the hope of qualifying for the National Bible Bee Competition and having the chance to compete for the prize, taking the test is beneficial even for participants who do not intend or desire to qualify.

One of those ways in which it is useful even if you do not hope to qualify is as a benchmark to see how much information you’ve learned over the course of the study, and to see how much you remember. By taking a test on the material you’ve studied, you can see what you know or don’t know, which areas you didn’t understand or remember as well, and which areas you personally should focus on as you study in the future. Even if you haven’t completed the Summer Study by the testing window, you can (and should!) still take the test to see what you do know. And if you have completed the study, it’s a great way to recap what you learned and bring the Summer Study to a close.

Not only is taking the test helpful as an assessment tool to gauge how much you remember, but it’s also a great way to learn the skills of test-taking. Learning to be comfortable with taking tests and becoming familiar with the way test questions are written and why certain answers are correct or incorrect is just as necessary to score highly (if that is your goal) as it is to remember the information. Even if you have no intention of qualifying this year, it is helpful to learn the skills of test-taking, whether you’ll use them for another NBBC Qualifying Test in the future, or just to gain more testing experience to apply to other things, like academic tests.

Aside from being helpful, taking the test is fun, nerves and all. It is exciting to review everything you learned, and see how many questions you can answer correctly. After the testing window has ended, it’s fun to discuss what you learned and which questions you got stuck on with other participants. Most exciting of all, though, is seeing the results once they are released. Whether you qualify or not, learning more about God’s word is worth celebrating!

What should I study to prepare for it?

The questions on the NBBC Qualifying Test will be taken from the Summer Study material. All the questions will be based on information from either the ‘Redeemed’ Discovery Journal (including cross-references, Hebrew words, definitions, background information, etc.), the Navigate and Explore memory passages, or the book of Ruth. For more information on what will be on the test, read the National Bible Bee test study information on your dashboard.

It’s important to remember, however, that your performance on the test doesn’t indicate how much you grew spiritually, or how much the Lord is using His Word to work in your life. Even if you managed to answer every single question incorrectly, if just one verse impacts you and turns your heart towards the Lord, you’ve already won the best prize possible. So, take the NBBC Qualifying Test to review what you learned, have fun doing it, and remember that it cannot test the most important part of the whole study, and the reason we study in the first place: to glorify God through loving and being shaped by His Word and proclaiming it to others. 

Written by NBB Alumna: Janese Hurst

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