Eyes down for the University Business Christmas Quiz

Grab an eggnog, switch off your webcam, and test your knowledge of the higher education world with the University Business Christmas quiz!

Here is your starter for ten and, please, no conferring:


1 The word university is derived from the Latin ‘universitas magistrorum et scholarium’, which roughly translates as:

a) Master of universal learning and scholasticism

b) Community of teachers and scholars

c) Common ground in teaching and learning   


2 Two institutions share the record for most series wins on University Challenge, with four apiece. What are they?


3 What is the world’s most northerly university?


4 What is the largest UK university in terms of student numbers?


5 What was the first of the so-called red-brick universities?


6 The University of East Anglia’s pioneering creative writing course was co-founded by which noted author in 1970?

a) Graham Greene

b) Iris Murdoch

c) Malcolm Bradbury


7 In 1955, Philip Larkin began what at the University of Hull?

a) His role as senior lecturer in English

b) Thirty years as head librarian

c) A doctorate on the detrimental influence of parental relations


8 In September 2020, which 116-year-old institution at Columbia University “unanimously and enthusiastically decided to dissolve” in the wake of allegations regarding sexual misconduct, assault, theft and racism?

a) Interfraternity Council

b) Ethics Society

c) Marching band


9 Which was the first UK university to hold an online graduation ceremony?


10 In which academic year were student loans introduced?

a) 1990/91

b) 1997/98

c) 2004/05


11 Which university was the first in the UK to admit women students on equal terms to men?


12 Which of the following is not a college at the University of Oxford?

a) Brasenose

b) Maudlin

c) Exeter


13 In 1969, which university connected with Stanford Research Institute to form the world’s first internet connection?


14 ‘Palatinate purple’ is a colour associated with which university?


15 Which UK university was used as a location in the filming of:

Stanley Kubrick’s 1971 adaptation of A Clockwork Orange?

Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything?

Andrew Davies’ blackly comic higher education satire, A Very Peculiar Practice? (NB: there are two!)

2015 superhero blockbuster Avengers: Age of Ultron?

Series three of The Crown?


How did you get on?

ANSWERS 1. b; 2. The University of Manchester and Magdalen College, Oxford; 3. The University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS), located in the Arctic town of Longyearbyen, on Spitsbergen Island in Norway’s Svalbard archipelago; 4. The University of London; 5. The University of Birmingham; 6. c; 7. b; 8. c; 9. The Open University; 10. a; 11. University College London, in 1878; 12. b; 13. University of California, Los Angeles; 14. Durham; 15. Brunel, Cambridge (St John’s College), Keele and Birmingham, Royal Holloway, Aberystwyth


Thank you for your ongoing support. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from everyone at UB.

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