Current Events Quiz

Well it’s that time of year again.  As some of you may recall, since last year I’ve been giving my 4th year Global Health class a current events quiz twice a year, usually based on the BBC Global News podcasts.  Since current events questions can’t be reused, I have a tradition of posting the questions here after the students have had their quiz, just to see how the general population does. (Previous quizzes are here and here.)

The purpose is to entertain, but also to provide a baseline of performance for the students to gauge their knowledge.  I will not post the class’s results, but I will share with them the results of how well you, my readers, do!

Keep in mind that this is clearly an unscientific comparison.  The students had time and warning to study, for example.  And you, the reader, are a self-selected bunch; many of you who do poorly will likely choose not to share your results!

But if you’re open, here’s what you do: take the quiz below.  It consists of 10 multiple choice questions.  The answer key is presented at the bottom.  Then, enter your score by clicking on the following link:
(Note that the link won’t work on Nov 24 from 1pm-4pm due to maintenance being performed on All others days should be fine.)

Remember: this is not a contest.

I’ll write about the general results in a week.  And do stay tuned for the second quiz sometime in February!

Thanks, and feel free to share!

1. Which African nation is was under a state of emergency this past week, as a result of contested national elections?

a.  Ghana
b.  Guyana
c.  Guinea
d.  Sierra Leone
e.  Mali

2. An arms dealer known as “the merchant of death” was extradited from Thailand to the USA this past week to face terrorism charges in New York.  From what country does he have his citizenship?

a.   Czech Republic
b.  Thailand
c.  USA
d.  Canada
e.   Russia

3.  Some believe that the Euro is in danger of serious devaluation due to the debt crisis of which European nation, famed for its very low corporate tax rate?

a.  Slovakia
b.  Ireland
c.  Germany
d.  Croatia
e.  Belgium

4.  On Jan 9, 2011, the citizens of Sudan will vote on what issue?

a. The separation of Southern Sudan from Northern Sudan
b. Whether to allow pan-African peacekeepers to enter the country
c. Whether to allow NATO peacekeepers to enter the country
d. Whether to extradite the current President to face war crimes charges at the World Court
e. Whether to re-run the most recent contested Presidential election

5.  Which Western European nation tightened its airport security this past week, because of well publicized threats of terrorism?

a. Germany
b. France
c. Belgium
d. Ireland
e. Greece

6.  China’s recent financial woes are reportedly associated with:

a. Border dispute with India
b. Rising food prices
c. Regional experimentation with democracy
d. Failure of their space program
e. New cases of bird flu in Hong Kong and Shanghai

7.  Demonstrators in Haiti believe that that country’s cholera epidemic was brought by what?

a. The U.S. army
b. Wyclef Jean’s entourage
c. North American aid workers
d. Nepalese peacekeepers
e. Dormant bacterial flows released by the recent earthquake

8.   A low level separatist insurgency has been percolating for decades in Papua, which is a province of what country?

a.   Malaysia
b.  Indonesia
c.  India
d.  China
e.  Burma

9.  Life expectancy in Swaziland has halved in the last 20 years.  This is largely due to dual epidemic of what two diseases?

a.  HIV & Malaria
b.  Malaria & TB
c.  HIV & Diabetes
d.  HIV & TB
e.  Diarrhea & Malaria

10.  Representatives of NATO nations met in which city this past week to discuss the war in Afghanistan?

a.  Berlin
b.  Madrid
c.  Athens
d.  Rome
e.  Lisbon


1. c
2. e
3. b
4. a
5. a
6. b
7. d
8. b
9. d
10. e