Each year thousands of schools in the United States participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society.
The contest is designed to motivate students to learn
about the world and how it works. Students in grades four through eight are eligible for this entertaining and challenging competition. With a top prize of a $50,000 college scholarship—plus other prizes—the contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. Students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories, and the Department of Defense Dependents Schools are participating in the 2016 National Geographic Bee.
There are three levels of competition: school, state, and national. To compete for advancement from the school to the state level, the winning student at each school must take the online qualifying test. As many as 100 of the highest-scoring students in a state or territory advance to the state competition. The state Bee champion advances to the national championship in Washington, D.C.