Click Here to Access Past US History Bee National Qualifying Exam Questions

The National Qualifying Exam consists of 50 multiple choice questions, which students have 20 minutes to complete. For each question, there are four possible answers with two points scored for a correct answer, 0 points for an answer left blank, and -1 point scored for an incorrect answer. The Exams are the same for the Varsity and Junior Varsity Divisions.
The National Qualifying Exam is available online and in person at Regional events for the 2021-22 year and costs $10. Please note that there are three separate versions of the NQE, and you can request which online version(s) of the NQE you would like to take.

Students who score in the top 50% of students taking the exam at a given site or score above the official National Median Score in their Division for their version of the NQE will qualify for the National Championships on that basis.
Different National Median Scores are calculated for Varsity and Junior Varsity students for each version of the National Qualifying Exam. In the 2021-2022 academic year, C Set medians are calculated on January 1, B Set medians are calculated on February 1, and A Set medians are calculated on March 10.
It is only necessary to qualify once for Nationals. If a student finishes below the Nationals qualifying threshold on an NQE, that would not “unqualify” them from Nationals if they’ve already qualified through a different exam version.


The distribution of questions on a chronological basis for the NQE, as well as at the National Championships, will be as follows:
15% – US History until 1783 (including the history of lands that would eventually become part of the USA before they did)
10% – US History from 1784-1815
15% – US History from 1816-1865
15% – US History from 1866-1918
15% – US History from 1919-1945
15% – US History from 1946-1992
15% – US History from 1993-Present

The distribution of questions on a thematic basis for the NQE, as well as at the National Championships, will be as follows:

10% – Military History
25 % – Social and Cultural History
35 % – Political History
10 % – Economic History
5% – Historiography
5% – Sports & Entertainment History
10% – Any / Other / Multiple Disciplines Combined