ACF Winter

Last updated: October 19, 2023

ACF Winter is a medium-difficulty tournament (halfway between ACF Fall and ACF Regionals). It is meant for players with a variety of experiences: from players in their first semester of college quizbowl, to players who have been to ACF Nationals. ACF Winter was revived in 2020; the original iterations of ACF Winter were held in 2009 and 2010.

Table of Contents

2023 ACF Winter

2023 ACF Winter will be held on November 11, 2023.


2023 ACF Winter is head-edited by Ethan Ashbrook.

The subject breakdown by editor is:

Editor Subjects
Rachel Ezrielev American Literature, World Literature
Raymond Chen British Literature
Chandler West European Literature
Amogh Kulkarni American History, World History, Social Science
Allan Lee European History, Other History
Sharath Narayan Biology
Ethan Ashbrook Chemistry
Maxwell Ye Physics
Michal Gerasimiuk Other Science
Guy Indorante Painting & Sculpture, Other Fine Arts
Jacob Egol Classical Music
Eric Mukherjee Mythology
Joel Miles Philosophy
Evan Knox Religion, Geography, Current Events, Other Academic, Pop Culture

Online format

We hope that ACF Winter can be held in person. However, we acknowledge that some schools remain uncertain about the possibility of allowing large events due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, it is possible that some mirrors of ACF Winter will be held online, and we will work to create the most authentic and engaging quizbowl experience possible under these circumstances. We will continue to post updates as we learn more.


The team registration form is available here. The staff registration form is available here.


The fields for each site are available here.


Team entry fee or discount  
Base fee per team $150
New to quizbowl discount −$100
Shorthanded discount (1–2 players) −$75
Travel discount −$10 per 200 miles traveled one-way
Buzzers −$10 per functional buzzer system
Staffers −$15 per staffer with functional laptop. Staffers must register with ACF in advance.

The new-to-quizbowl discount is for schools that have not sent a team to any regular collegiate academic tournament (exclusively Novice tournaments do not count) since September 2022, and have no one on the team(s) claiming this discount who played those tournaments for another school.

Host sites will bill teams as soon as possible after the teams register. Teams should pay their host sites by whatever method is convenient for the hosts, who will in turn pay ACF by check, cash, or PayPal.

See below for packet submission discounts.

The minimum fee is $0 per team.

Packet submission

Any team with at least two people on it who played a regular, collegiate, academic quizbowl tournament* (either as a college student or high school student) prior to September 1st, 2022, is required to submit a half-packet, unless it is a high school team attending a high-school-only mirror. Please email if you are unsure whether your team is required to submit a half-packet. A team that is not required to submit a packet may submit an optional packet by the no-penalty deadline for a $50 discount.

* For these purposes, all ACF tournaments, NAQT SCT (Division I or Division II), NAQT ICT, and typical college-level academic invitationals count as regular collegiate academic tournaments. Pop culture or “hybrid” tournaments, HCASC, and tournaments played on NAQT’s Collegiate Novice series sets do not.

Here is the submission schedule:

Submission deadline Packet discount
September 2, 2023 −$50
September 16, 2023 −$25
September 30, 2023 −$0 (no penalty)
October 14, 2023 +$25
October 28, 2023 +$50

There is an additional $10/day penalty for each day after October 28rd. If teams required to submit a half-packet have not submitted by November 4th, they will be dropped from the tournament, with no exceptions.

If your team is going to submit a half-packet, whether required or not, email to request a distribution. All finished packets must be sent to that email before 11:59 Pacific time on the day listed to meet the deadline. Please format the half-packet in .doc or .docx before sending it. The email subject line should list the name of the school, the team number (if applicable), and the words “half-packet.”

Your assigned half-packet may ask for questions from more specific categories within the distribution. For instance, instead of being assigned an “American Literature” tossup, you might be asked to write a question on 20th-century American poetry, or an Economics bonus instead of “Social Science/Philosophy.” This should reduce redundancy in submissions and maximize the number of submitted questions we can use, without being too constraining.

If a team wishes to outsource part of its packet to a player not expected to play on that team (e.g., a student who has graduated), it must first receive approval from the head editors. Non-playing students are welcome and encouraged to help their newer club members write, but it’s useful to know the contributors for both credit and logistical reasons.

If multiple teams from one school are submitting packets, they should NOT be aware of each others’ questions.

Tips and guidelines

  • Please make sure your questions are harder than questions in ACF Fall and easier than at ACF Regionals. 2019 EFT and 2020 ACF Winter are good difficulty targets. A majority of your tossup answers should conceivably be a tossup answer at ACF Fall.
  • Questions should be written in 10-pt Times New Roman with one-inch margins. Although you may submit longer questions, tossups will be capped at seven lines for the tournament. Each bonus part should be a maximum of three lines in length, with the majority being one or two lines long.
  • When writing bonuses, aim for the easy parts to be converted by around 90% of teams. The giveaways for tossups should also conceivably be answered by the majority of teams. Answers should generally emphasize playability over creativity; aim for creative and interesting clues with straightforward answerlines.
  • Especially if you are submitting for one of the later deadlines, the frequency of topic clashes means that broad common-link questions are unlikely to be used.

More information can be found in ACF’s packet submission guidelines.


ACF Winter uses the standard ACF distribution, which is the same distribution as ACF Regionals.


For information on who is eligible to play ACF tournaments, see ACF’s official Eligibility Rules.


We are looking for hosts in the regions listed in the “Hosting” section below. The host bid form is here. Please submit bids by Sunday, September 3rd at 11:59 PM PT. If you have any questions about hosting or about the form, email ACF’s Site Coordinator at and CC Online sites are optional. Hosts must abide by ACF’s Hosting Guidelines.


Mirrors will by default be regional. ACF reserves the right to move teams and staffers between sites. ACF intends to mirror 2023 ACF Winter in the following regions:

Region Site
Upstate NY Binghamton
Upper Mid-Atlantic Columbia
Lower Mid-Atlantic Virginia
Southeast Georgia Tech
Florida University of Central Florida
Great Lakes  
Midwest Northwestern
North Minnesota
South Central Kansas State
California Berkeley
Northwest British Columbia
Eastern Canada Toronto
United Kingdom Oxford
Online Overflow Purdue

Past tournaments

Sample questions from previous iterations of ACF Winter are on the Collegiate Quizbowl Packet Archive.

Announcements and information about previous iterations of ACF Winter are archived below: