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Saint Jerome in His Study

Flashcards are used by some quizbowl players for studying. A flashcard is an index card with one piece of information on the front side (e.g. a clue pointing towards a potential answer, a title) and a related piece on the other (i.e. the answer corresponding to said clue, the author of that title). The use of flashcards for study, or the writing of information on such devices, is sometimes referred to as flashcarding or carding.

Flashcards are not a foolproof strategy for improving at quizbowl when used alone. It is very rarely the case that "one-to-one" associations between a clue and exactly one answer will always hold true. Some players deride the use of flashcards as encouraging people to think of the game as mere word association, which can result in sloppy play or a lack of active thinking while playing.

A large set of flashcards, or a set of flashcards within one category, can begin to approximate list studying.


Some players use flash card computer programs, such as Quizlet, rather than paper index cards, either to save space or make use of advanced functions such as three-sided cards. Mnemosyne and Anki are also common choices due to their use of spaced repetition to improve retention and their multitude of add-ons.

An improved algorithm for spaced repetition, as applied to studying for quiz bowl, was the goal of the KAR3L study tool developed by Jordan Boyd-Graber.

Notable users

Notably successful users of flashcards have included Brendan Byrne and 2010-11 State College, as well as members of the Chicago team like Max Schindler [1] and Kai Smith (though the originator of this practice in the Chicago club was actually John Lawrence).

See also