What is a Contestant Test?


Want to try out for Jeopardy! but can't get to an audition location? Don't really care about being on the show, but think it'd be fun to see what the contestant test is like? You're in luck. Sony is running an online contestant search this week. For those of you on the west coast, the 50-question test will be administered at 8 PM Thursday. Good luck!


The test was fun, but I doubt I got a passing score. I think I got around 40 correct, though I can't be sure-- the questions went by too quickly to jot down for verification later (though I might have managed it had I thought about it in advance), and you're not told the answers or your score. Things I know I missed:

  • Recognizing amylase as an ENZYME
  • Shakespeare's works are split into comedies, tragedies, and HISTORIES
  • The fourth state to call itself a Commonwealth (besides Massachusetts, Kentucky, and Virginia)
  • CHEKHOV was the playwright of The Three Sisters
  • There were more I missed, but I can't recall them now.

    A fun exercise, but I'm not the next Ken Jennings. Curse you, Trebek!

    I got 39 (I was able to check the answers over at the Jeopardy! forum). Until I checked it, I thought it was more like 45 right, but then I saw the ones I missed . . .

    People said that in the in-person tests, 35 was often a passing score, but some people thought this test was easier.

    Ugh. I went to the forum and it looks like I got about 32-- worse than I thought. The ones I got wrong (the starred ones being ones I'm particularly annoyed I missed):

  • Amylase & lipase are these substances in the body that catalyze reactions without being changed themselves (enzymes)
  • This president's last words were, "I know that I am going where Lucy is" (Rutherford B. Hayes)
  • The First Folio divides Shakespeare's plays into comedies, tragedies, & these (histories)
  • Muslim Crusader--some TOM about swords (Saladin?)
  • * Preserver god of the Hindu trinity (Vishnu) [I had Vishnu, then changed to Rama]
  • English poet who lost his life fighting for Greek independence in 1824 (Byron)
  • "The Guns of" _____ (August)
  • Had a bad year in 1828[?], contracted TB while working on his Symphony in B minor (Schubert?)
  • The four states that call themselves commonwealths are Virginia, Massachusetts, Kentucky, & this one (Pennsylvania)
  • * Alphanumeric term for the year MM (Y2K) [didn't understand the question, entered "2000"]
  • Representatives' postal "priviledge" allowing them to post mail for free (franking)
  • * 1906 slaughterhouse book (The Jungle) [I knew it, but couldn't cough it up in time]
  • Ex-Gucci exec who put himself on a 2005 Vanity Fair cover (Tom Ford)
  • At 1 1/2 miles, it's the longest of the Triple Crown races (the Belmont Stakes) [The question also specified it was the last leg of Triple Crown, which I thought was the Kentucky Derby]
  • * He caused headaches for Pope Leo X in 1520 by wanting to reduce the number of sacraments from 7 to 2 (Martin Luther) [I knew this but my fingers were completely clumsy and I ran out of time before I could type it anywhere close to correctly]
  • The two South American capitals on the Rio de la Plata are Buenos Aires and this one (Montevideo)
  • * A statue of her was disinterred from the Island of Milos in 1820 (Venus) [I can't BELIEVE I missed this]
  • Olga, Masha, & Irina were this playwright's "Three Sisters" (Anton Chekhov)
  • 35 has indeed been the cutoff score all three times I've taken the test in person.

    I managed to totally forget about this despite getting an e-mail from Jeopardy about it (naturally I didn't happen to look here until the day after the East Coast test).

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