Think You’re Smarter Than Josh Levin? Find Out With This Week’s News Quiz.

Test your knowledge of the week’s news.
March 27 2014 11:33 PM

Play the Slate News Quiz

With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.

Welcome back to Slate’s weekly news quiz. I’m your host, 74-time Jeopardy! winner Ken Jennings.

Every Friday I’ll be testing your knowledge with 12 challenging questions on the week’s news events, big and small, including happenings in science, sports, politics, and culture both high and low. The questions are multiple-choice, and time is of the essence: You have 30 seconds to answer, and as the seconds tick away, the question’s point value drops from 50 all the way down to zero, so you’ll want to click on your answer as fast as you possibly can. There’s no penalty for an incorrect answer, so feel free to take a guess if your puny human brain fails you.

At the end of the quiz, you’ll be able to compare your score with that of the average contestant, as well as to the score of a Slate-ster whom I’ve talked into taking the quiz on the record. This week’s contestant is Slate’s executive editor, Josh Levin, who is also the host of Slate’s sports podcast, Hang Up and Listen.


Think you can ace my quiz and beat Levin? Good luck!

The Slate Quiz with quizmaster Ken Jennings

If your NCAA bracket is already busted, try playing the Slate News Quiz for a fresh start. I wish I were a Warren Buffett type who could offer a $1 billion prize for a perfect score of 600 on this week's quiz. Unfortunately, Jeopardy! doesn't pay as well as Berkshire Hathaway, so you're playing only for the thrill of defeating Slate staffers, total strangers, and any of your dumber friends to whom you recommend the quiz.

Question 1 of 12

Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi announced Wednesday that he will be resigning from the army to run for president of what country?

He's been Egypt's de facto leader since leading the takeover of Mohamed Morsi's government last July.

Question 2 of 12

On Monday, how did some Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 family members first learn that the plane was officially considered "lost"?

After the condolence text was widely criticized, Malaysia Airlines assured the media that it also contacted as many family members as possible in person.

Question 3 of 12

Five former aides of what man were found guilty on 31 counts of fraud and conspiracy in federal court this week?

Question 4 of 12

A new Fox reality series will trick 12 American women into thinking they might actually get what?

Unbeknownst to them, "Harry" is just a look-alike named Matthew Hicks.

Question 5 of 12

The coalition of nations called the G-8 suspended operations this week, for what reason?

Russia was effectively ejected from the (former) Group of Eight, which will meet this June in Brussels instead of Sochi as originally planned.

Question 6 of 12

A math teacher in Belgium quieted a classroom of noisy students by threatening them with what?

"I've read all the books," he told them, according to Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad. "If there is too much noise again, I will write the names of the dead on the board."

Question 7 of 12

Katie Francis of Oklahoma City has set a new record by doing what 18,107 times over the past seven weeks?

Her goal is to hit 20,000 boxes by the end of the month.

Question 8 of 12

For the first time, Americans have been asked to vote online for the new Z-2 design of what?

There are three possible designs for the prototype Z-2 spacesuit, including a glowing Tron-inspired look called "Technology."

Question 9 of 12

On Saturday outside Oso, Wash., at least 24 people were killed in what kind of disaster, one of the deadliest of its kind in U.S. history?

Reports dating back to the 1950s had warned of potential "catastrophic failure" in the area.

Question 10 of 12

As part of Russia's takeover of Crimea, the Russian navy has seized what unusual Ukrainian military facility?

The elite sonar-proof dolphins, trained to patrol the Black Sea, locate mines, and attack scuba divers, have been in Ukrainian hands since the breakup of the USSR.

Question 11 of 12

This week the African nation of Guinea banned the eating of what unusual food?

At least 62 are dead from a new outbreak of the virus in West Africa.

Question 12 of 12

A National Transportation Safety Board investigator has blamed Monday's train derailment at O'Hare International Airport on what?

This is the second incident in two months caused by the same operator dozing off at the controls, the investigator said.

Click to revisit answers

March 27, 2014

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Josh Levin

Slate's executive editor






In a text message from the airline

With a compensation check in the mail

When their Malaysian visas were revoked

Steve Jobs

Osama Bin Laden

Bernie Madoff

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell

The CEO job at Pinterest

The cover of Vogue magazine

A chance to marry Prince Harry

A birth control mandate from the U.S. Supreme Court

To protest U.S. surveillance overseas

The EU refuses to fund its summit

Disagreement over exchange rates

To immediately reform as the G-7


His Christopher Walken impression

Game of Thrones spoilers

A chocolate gun

Selling a box of Girl Scout cookies


Sending a text message

Planting a tree

Commemorative quarters

Air Force One

Tax forms

NASA spacesuits

A helicopter crash

A coal mine explosion

A hailstorm

A mudslide

A unit of combat dolphins

The world's largest stockpile of salt

30 decommissioned Soviet spaceships

An experimental stink-bomb lab

Sassafras, used as a hallucinogen there

Bats, which can carry Ebola

Ketchup-flavored snacks, a "tool of Western imperialism"

Mummy linen, believed to improve potency

Heavy rains

A sleeping driver

Loose tracks

"Conscious uncoupling"


0 points


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Josh Levin
Slate's executive editor

0 points

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50 points



Quiz Template by Chris Kirk and Andrew Morgan

Ken Jennings is a 74-time Jeopardy! winner and is the author of six books, most recently the Junior Genius Guides.


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