UIL Academic Coaches
Accounting, Computer Applications: Sharon Kinsfather
The accounting contest is a 50 minute timed event that requires students to take a challenging exam that includes comprehensive thinking skills as well as application skills as they apply their knowledge of accounting. The accounting team consists of three participants and one alternate. All four students take the accounting test at contest. You can advance individually or as a team.
In the computer applications contest students are asked to create two printouts in a 30 minute timed testing period. The problems will test the student’s knowledge of word processing, spreadsheet, and/or database and integration. The contestant needs to have good keyboarding skills. Three students compete in this competition as individuals.
Calculator Applications: Tia Patton
This 30-minute contest shall include calculations involving basic arithmetic, roots, powers, exponentiation, logarithms, and trigonometric and inverse trigonometric functions. In addition to straightforward calculation problems, the contest shall include geometric and stated problems. Usually you will need to learn how to use an HP calculator for this contest. You can advance individually or as a team.
Computer Science: Dennis Myhand
This contest tests your computer programming knowledge and skills using the JAVA language. It is a 2-part contest. The first part consists of a 40 problem, 45-minute multiple choice test and the second part is a 2 hour hands-on programming portion. This is both an individual and team competition.
Congress, Lincoln Douglas Debate: Tia Patton
Congress is an individual contest in a large group setting. It models the legislative process of democracy, specifically, the United States Congress. Within this mock legislative assembly competition, contestants draft legislation (proposed laws and position statements) submitted to the tournament, and they research the docket of bills and resolutions dealing with real-world social and political policies prior to the contest to prepare their speeches. At the tournament, students caucus in committees, deliver formal discourse on the merits and disadvantages of each piece of legislation, and vote to pass or defeat the measures they have examined. Parliamentary procedure forms structure for the discourse, and students extemporaneously respond to others’ arguments over the course of a session.
Lincoln Douglas debate is a one-on-one argumentation in which the debater attempts to convince the judge of the acceptability of his/her side of a proposition. One debater shall argue the affirmative side of the resolution, and one debater shall argue the negative side of the resolution in a given round.
Current Issues & Events: Carol Griffith
The contest will challenge your knowledge of existing state, national and international events and the specific issues concerning these events. “Current events” are defined as those which have occurred during the present school year. The contest will consist of questions which will be posed in such a way as to allow for objective grading. Participants are required to write an essay in addition to answering 40 multiple choice questions. This event conflicts with number sense, ready-writing, prose, poetry, LD debate, and calculator applications.
CX Debate, Extemporaneous Speaking: Anne McCain
The purpose of CX Debate is to train the student to analyze a problem, to conduct thorough and relevant research, and to utilize principles of argumentation and advocacy in presenting the most effective case for or against a given proposition. (Teams consist of two debaters.)
Informative Speaking – The purpose of this event is to stimulate an active interest in current affairs at the state, national, and international levels, and to teach the student to present extemporaneously in a clear and impartial manner the facts about a subject as they appear in the best available sources of information.
Persuasive Speaking – The purpose of this event is to train students to analyze a current issue, determine a point of view, and then organize and deliver extemporaneously a speech that seeks to persuade listeners to agree with that viewpoint.
Essay Contests: Richard Turner
Barbara Jordan Historical Essay Competition: Founded in 1995 as an event sponsored by The University of Texas at Austin, the Barbara Jordan Historical Essay Competition moved to its new home with UIL Academics in 2011-2012. The competition provides students an opportunity to explore the contributions of African Americans to Texas history, as well as honoring the legacy of its namesake, Barbara Jordan. The theme of the competition is "African Americans in Texas: Past and Present."
Latino History Essay Competition: Founded in 2011 by the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at UT-Austin, the Latino History Essay Competition has found a new home with UIL Academics beginning with the 2012-2013 school year. In its initial year the competition was open to students in South Texas; beginning with 2012-2013 entries will be accepted from students statewide. The theme of the competition is "historical and cultural legacies of Latinos in Texas history."
Journalism: Lisa Bullock
There are five journalism contests:
Copy Writing Contest: Copy Editing teaches student the vital skills of proofreading and editing to create accurate, clear and succinct writing. Emphasis is placed on the ability to find and correct grammatical, spelling, punctuation, AP style and factual errors.
Feature Writing Contest: Calling all storytellers! A feature tells the reader a story. It uses quotes liberally and allows the reader to see the story through detailed description and vivid writing. Whereas a news story focuses on timely and newsworthy information, a feature story is similar but appeals to the reader in a more emotional way, often focusing on one angle of the story. The feature writing contest is a one-hour contest.
News Writing Contest: If you are drawn to writing in a direct, “short and sweet” fashion, this contest is for you! The news writing contest is a 45-minute contest in which the contestant will be given a fact sheet from which they will develop a news article. News stories focus on timely and newsworthy information.
Editorial Writing: If you love to share your opinion on an issue, this contest is for you! An editorial is a short persuasive response. Students must advocate a specific point-of-view in response to a prompt in 45 minutes.
Headline Writing: Calling all witty writers! Participants read six short articles given to them and write prescribed headlines for each. The headline writing contest is a 45-minute contest.
Literary Criticism: Christy Deyton
Do you enjoy reading novels, plays, and poems? If so, this event might be the one for you. Literary Criticism is the study of major literary works as well as literary terms. The contest will consist of multiple choice questions and an essay question. Sign up soon! Remember: “Reading is to the mind, what exercise is to the body.”--Joseph Addison
Mathematics: Cheryl Weixelman
If you are a student of advanced mathematics and enjoy mental challenges, then UIL mathematics is the event for you. Covering everything from Algebra I through Calculus, this test promises to stretch your brain. This test pits you, your calculator, and pencil against 60 multiple choice questions in 40 minutes.
Number Sense: Kerri Darilek
If you enjoy working math problems in your head and perform well under pressure, then number sense is the event for you. With only 10 minutes allowed, it’s just you and your pencil against the test. No calculator, no scratch work, and no erasing allowed. Sounds like fun, right? Come by and sign up!
Prose and Poetry Interpretation: Richard Turner
It’s acting with a script!!! If you are theatrical or enjoy being a little dramatic then come experience, and share poetry or prose, through the art of oral interpretation.
One-Act Play & Theatrical Design: Beth Auble
One Act Play is a place where actors and crew come together to form a company/family. For the lucky few chosen (15 actors, 5 crew, 4 understudies, 6 rally squad) you will get a chance to learn and stretch your theatrical skills in a friendly competitive environment. Come help Industrial Theatre continue a legacy of excellence and honor.
Do you daydream in color? Do you like to doodle, draw, or design on the computers? Do pictures pop into your head as you read? Theatrical Design might be for you! Costumes, set, make-up and hair, and marketing are the different categories or you could compete in more than one! This year’s prompt is to produce WillyWonka. You must be willing to accept with good sportsmanship the decision and critique with a view to improve future projects and to satisfy the competitive, artistic spirit with friendly rivalry among schools.
Ready Writing: Sarah Woodring
Ready writing is an event in which a writer sits down with a dictionary and a thesaurus, receives two prompts, and proceeds to write/type a semi-opinionated essay of approximately 750-900 words on the prompt of his/her choice. One of the prompts is usually a “current event” of observation made by a person, and the other is usually literary-based. It is a lot easier than it sounds and will probably help you become a better writer; however, it does help to possess a well-developed vocabulary and a love of written expression.
Science and Social Studies: Tia Patton
The science test consists of 60 multiple-choice questions, 20 questions each in the subject areas of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The purpose is to challenge you to do a wide range of reading in the areas of science, to gain an understanding of the significance of experiments, to be alert to new discoveries and information in areas of science, to gain an understanding of the basic principles as well as knowledge of the history and philosophy of science and to foster a sense of enthusiasm about science and how it affects our daily lives.
Calling All History Buffs… No fake news here… We have a topic this year that is as relevant to what is going on in our world today as it is historical. This year’s topic is: “U.S. Civil Rights Movements: Fulfilling a Nation’s Promise”. The primary reading selection is The Race Beat: The Press, the Civil Rights Struggle, and the Awakening of a Nation. A variety of study materials are provided including a phone app. This 90-minute contest consists of 45 multiple choice questions and an essay.
Spelling & Vocabulary: Veronica McManus
Want to do well on the verbal section of the SAT test? Participating in UIL Spelling & Vocabulary will improve your chances! Not only will you learn correct spellings of words, but you will also learn their meanings. Challenge yourself! A small investment of time now could pay off big in the future.