Academic WorldQuest


Due to COVID-19, CIR has made the difficult decision to not host AWQ in 2021.

What is Academic WorldQuest?

This popular college-bowl style quiz competition features teams of 4 students competing to answer questions regarding world events. Teams have approximately 60 seconds to answer each multiple choice question and are encouraged to work together with their team members. There are 10 questions per round and a total of 10 rounds, organized by theme. In 2020, the themes for each round were:

  1. U.S.-Russia Relations
  2. Country in Focus: South Korea
  3. Preventing Extremism in Fragile States
  4. Oceans: The World’s Garbage Dump
  5. Great Decisions
  6. Brexit and the EU
  7. China’s Belt & Road Initiative
  8. Germany: 30 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall
  9. Qatar and the Future of the Gulf Cooperation Council
  10. Current Events

How can teams prepare?

The World Affairs Councils of America releases an official study guide every year. Students should carefully read through the study guide to learn more about the competition and to access the materials where questions will be drawn from.

See the official AWQ 2019-2020 Study Guide to access study material and answers to FAQs.

What does the winning team win?

The winning team (and its teacher!) received an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. for the national AWQ competition on April 24-25th, 2020. The winning team from New Mexico will get to compete head-to-head with teams from across the United States! Organized by the World Affairs Councils of America and hosted at the U.S. Institute of Peace, there will be networking events that allow students to interact with international experts, gain an understanding of careers in international affairs, and learn about different educational possibilities.

How can teams enter?

It is free to participate in the Academic WorldQuest (AWQ) competition. The sponsoring teacher should send an email to Tacarra at, providing the names of the AWQ team, including the first and last name of students, as well as their grade and email address. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!

See the official AWQ 2019-2020 Study Guide to access study material and answers to FAQs.

Study Material available for download

2020 Winning Team!

United World College winner bios: 

Paul is from Germany and enjoys playing sports and conducting academic research. Through projects and his studies, Paul aspires to make the world a better place.

Alejandro is from Caracas, Venezuela and in addition to playing sports, he enjoys studying politics and economics. Alejandro’s goal is to become a leader who will restore justice, wealth and progress to his homeland.

Vidar is Swedish, but was raised in Luxembourg. He enjoys studying politics, history and economics. In his free time, Vidar plays sports and likes listening to music.

Karoline is a student from Denmark and enjoys studying foreign languages and spending time outdoors.