Search: Keyword:
UIL Academics

Select A New Club or Organization
Show All
Teresa Hall (UIL Coordinator) Email Icon Email
  Anisa Coates (One Act Play) Email Icon Email

Why join the UIL Academic Team?

·         Competitive

·         Advanced learning

·         Academically rewarding

·         Work with other students/teachers with higher level thinking skills

·         Enhanced learning

·         Improved SAT/ACT test scores

·         Develop self-esteem, self-confidence

·         Enhances curriculum

·         Exposure to college campuses and scholarships

·         Opportunity to develop into a leader

·         Learn how to study independently

·         Promotes College Readiness

·         Field Trip (in the past Ranger game or Six Flags)


Competition Dates 2016-17 school year:  

 Student Activity Conference:  Saturday November 5th @ UT Arlington


o   District:  tba (between Nov 1st and Nov 15th

o   State:  Jan 9th-11th

 Brock Invitational Meet:   Saturday January 21st 

 Film contest:  submit entries by Jan 25th

 Theatrical Designs submit entries by Feb 9th

 Mansfield Invitation Meet:  Saturday February 11th

 Barbara Jordan Historical & Latino History Essays submit entries by Feb 22nd


o   District Monday February 2nd @ Brock

o   State March 13th – 14th @ UT Austin


o   Writing events and Computer Science Tuesday March 21st @ Brock HS  

o   All other Academics Wednesday March 22nd @ Brock HS

o   Regional April 7th-8th @ Abilene

o   State (non-speakers)  April 20th-22nd @ UT Austin

o   State (speakers)   May 22nd-23rd @ UT Austin

 One Act Play:

o   District rehearsal ?????   @ Graham HS 

o   District contest March 20th or 25th   @ Graham HS   ???

o   Bi-district  ??? @  ???

o   Area April 1st @ Clyde HS 

o   Regional April 5th – 8th @ Abilene

o   State April 19th-21st @ Austin


Description of UIL Events


Accounting:  Highly suggest you be enrolled in an accounting class. 

Maybe you’re on your way to becoming a CPA or you just really know how to take care of money. Make a stop at this contest and pick up a few skills in bookkeeping, balancing and banking before you take one of the Big Four accounting firms by storm. The contest focuses on the elementary principles and practices of accounting for sole proprietorship, partnerships and corporations, and includes bookkeeping terminology, the work sheet with adjustments, income statement, balance sheet, trial balance, account classification, journalizing, posting, bank reconciliation, payroll and other items related to the basic accounting cycle.


Calculator Applications:  Incoming freshmen are welcome. 

Add your math skills to a college application, standardized test or resume, and success might just be the result. Math is power in today’s job market, so multiply your potential by trying out this problem-solving contest. The contest includes calculations involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, roots, powers, exponentiation, logarithms, trigonometric functions and inverse trigonometric functions. In addition to straightforward calculation problems, the contest includes geometric and stated problems similar to those found in algebra, geometry and trigonometry.


Computer Applications:   

For the ‘tech’ generation: Become technologically savvy while testing your word processing, database and spreadsheet skills. You’ll become familiar with the finer points of computer skills such as formatting copy, editing, creating charts and integrating applications. Computer Applications focuses on word processing speed and accuracy, computer skills in database and spreadsheet, and integration of applications. Skills tested include formatting copy, mail merge, headers/footers, editing, proofreading, spreadsheet, graphs/charts, and integration of all applications.


Computer Science:  Highly suggest you be enrolled in Computer Science class. 

Bill Gates used to program computers in his spare time, and apparently he did something right. Get your start in computer science by learning the details of Java programming, and try your hand at writing some programs of your own. The Computer Science Contest challenges high school students to gain an understanding of the significance of computation as well as the details of Java programming, to be alert to new technology and information, to gain an understanding of the basic principles of computer science and to get a start in one of the most important fields of the Information Age.  You will compete individually on the multiple choice questions and write programs as a team.



This is an individual contest in a large group setting. It models the legislative process of democracy, specifically, the United States Congress. Within this mock legislative assembly competition, contestants draft legislation (proposed laws and position statements) submitted to the tournament, and they research the docket of bills and resolutions dealing with real-world social and political policies prior to the contest to prepare their speeches. At the tournament, students caucus in committees, deliver formal discourse on the merits and disadvantages of each piece of legislation, and vote to pass or defeat the measures they have examined. Parliamentary procedure forms structure for the discourse, and students extemporaneously respond to others’ arguments over the course of a session.


Copy and Editing:   

Be one of the first to get in on this new and exciting event. Are you the person others go to for peer editing in English?  Do you enjoy rewording and rearranging sentences until they perfectly express the meaning you wanted to convey?  If so this 15 minute contest could be perfect for you. Give it a try.


CX Debate:  Presentation time – total of 1 hour 30 minutes   

If you’ve never shied away from an argument and you have a zest for winning, give Cross-Examination Debate a try. As part of a two-person team, you will prepare your stance on a particular policy in advance and then face an opposing team in competition. You’ll have to think on your feet to defend your ideas. Cross-Examination Debate trains students to analyze a problem, conduct thorough and relevant research, and utilize principles of argumentation and advocacy in presenting the most effective case for or against a given proposition. Debate provides invaluable training in critical thinking, quick responses, defending worthy ideas and attacking invalid ideas. It teaches students to tolerate other points of view. Debate exists only in democratic societies, and no democratic society can exist without debate.


Current Issues and Events:    

You’ll go around the world in 40 multiple-choice questions as you test your knowledge on current state, national and global events. Watching news shows will pay off when you answer the essay question at the end and take a closer look at one current event. The contest focuses on a basic knowledge of current state, national and world events and issues. The contest consists of 40 multiple-choice questions and an essay that challenges students to understand not just what is happening in the world today, but why and how it’s happening and what it means to us as citizens of the United States.


Editorial Writing:    

This contest gives you a chance to win a medal just for sharing your opinion. In editorial writing, you’ll take a stand on a controversial school issue and back up your stance with facts and examples. This contest teaches students to read critically, to digest and prioritize information quickly and to write clearly, accurately and succinctly. Emphasis is placed on mechanical and stylistic precision, lead writing, use of direct and indirect quotes, news judgment, and the ability to think deeply, to compare and contrast and to argue or defend a point of view persuasively.


Essay Competition:   submitted on-line   

UIL Academics is proud to sponsor two essay competitions that provide exciting opportunities for students to explore the contributions of historically underrepresented groups to the history and culture of Texas. With a focus on original research and the use of primary sources, students are encouraged to look to their own communities in finding topics for their essays.  Both competitions are open to all students in grades 9-12 attending UIL member high schools. All entries submitted according to contest guidelines will be evaluated by experienced judges.

Barbara Jordan Historical Essay Competition

·         The competition provides students an opportunity to explore the contributions of African Americans to Texas history, as well as honoring the legacy of its namesake, Barbara Jordan. The theme of the competition is "African Americans in Texas: Past and Present."

Latino History Essay Competition

·         The theme of the competition is "historical and cultural legacies of Latinos in Texas history."


Feature Writing:    

If you’ve got a knack for developing a story, this contest is for you. You’ll be provided with the facts and quotes you need, and then it’s up to you to piece together a journalistic feature story your readers will remember. The Feature Writing Contest teaches students to read critically, to digest and prioritize information quickly and to write clearly, accurately and succinctly. Emphasis is placed on the same writing skills as in other UIL journalism contests, as well as the ability to write descriptively.


Film:   submitted on-line   

Short film production of original works.  Entries in narrative, documentary and animation are evaluated and ranked.  Originality, cinematic storytelling and technical execution are the basis of scoring. 


Informative Speaking:   30 minutes prep/ 6 minutes speaking    

This contest is all about watching the clock and knowing your material. You’ll draw a current event and have 30 minutes to comb through files you’ve collected throughout the year. Then you’ll present a 6 minute speech that informs your audience on all aspects of the current event you’ve researched. The purpose of informative speaking is to stimulate an active interest in current affairs at the state, national and international levels, and to teach the student to present extemporaneously in a clear and impartial manner the facts about a subject as they appear in the best available sources of information. This contest is an exercise in clear thinking and informing the public on the issues and concerns of the American people. The objective is to present information in an interesting way, and an attempt should not be made to change the listener’s mind beyond presenting the information.


Headline Writing:   

Put the finishing touches on the news as you decide what’s most important about the six news stories and top them off with headlines. The challenge is to be creative in your word choice and adhere to the word and line counts as you write tomorrow’s headlines. The contest teaches students to read critically, to digest and prioritize information quickly and to write clearly, accurately and succinctly. Emphasis is placed on the ability to discern key facts and to write with flair and style in order to tell and sell a story.


Lincoln-Douglas Debate:  Presentation time – 45 minutes total  

In this one-on-one values debate, you’ll prepare to argue for or against a given resolution. After researching the topic in advance, it will be up to you to make arguments that defend your point of view and debunk invalid claims from your opponent. Lincoln-Douglas debate provides excellent training for development of skills in argumentation, persuasion, research, and audience analysis. Through this contest, students are encouraged to develop a direct and communicative style of delivery. Lincoln-Douglas debate is a one-on-one argumentation in which debaters attempt to convince the judge of the acceptability of their side of a proposition. One debater will argue the affirmative side of the resolution and the other will argue the negative side of the resolution in a given round.


Literary Criticism:   

You’ll need a critical eye as you scan through literary history. You’ll analyze literature from a provided reading list as well as literary passages not on the list. A short essay serves as the tiebreaker that could put you over the top. The contest requires knowledge of literary history and of critical terms, and ability in literary criticism. Students are required to select the best answers involving judgment in literary criticism and to analyze literary passages from both the reading list and other sources. A tiebreaker is required in which the student must write a short essay dealing with a specified topic about a selected literary passage.


Mathematics:  Varsity math team enrolled in at least Honors Algebra II or above.   

Algebra, geometry, pre-calculus, oh my!   This 40-minute, 60-question contest is designed to test knowledge and understanding in the areas of Algebra I and II, geometry, trigonometry, math analysis, analytic geometry, pre-calculus, elementary calculus, and some fun crazy math words.


News Writing:   

In this contest, you decide what’s fit to print as you make your way through a set of facts and quotes, and pick out what’s important. You’ll work on deadline for the newspaper as you create a cohesive story that inquiring minds have a right to know. The News Writing Contest teaches students to read critically, to digest and prioritize information quickly, and to write clearly, accurately and succinctly. Emphasis is placed on mechanical and stylistic precision, lead writing, use of direct and indirect quotes, and news judgment.


Number Sense:   Incoming freshman are welcome. 

Ten minutes is all it takes to find out if you have good number sense. You’ll work with your coach and team to develop and practice shortcuts to solve the mental math test and still beat the clock. Make sense? This 80-question mental math contest covers all high school mathematics curricula. All answers must be derived without using scratch paper or a calculator.


One-Act Play:   

The director will let me know who qualifies for OAP during UIL period after auditions.  This is a theater production which fosters a competitive artistic spirit.    All practices are outside of the school day. 


Persuasive Speaking:   30 minutes prep/ 6 minutes speaking  

Similar to informative speaking, in this contest you have 30 minutes to review your research files on a particular current event and come to a conclusion to argue about that topic. The goal of your speech is not just to present relevant information, but to convince your audience that your position is solid. This contest trains students to analyze a current issue, determine a point of view, and organize and deliver a speech that seeks to persuade listeners. The objective is to reinforce the views of listeners who already believe as the speaker does, but even more so, to bring those of neutral or opposing views around to the speaker’s beliefs or proposed course of action. This contest should especially appeal to those who have a strong argumentative urge and who wish to advocate reforms or outline solutions to current problems.


Poetry Interpretation:  Presentation time – 8 minutes  

You’ll choose a selection that fits in the given category to present to an audience. This contest emphasizes literary analysis through expressive oral reading. The purpose of this contest is to encourage the student to understand, experience and share poetry through the art of oral interpretation. The goals of this contest are to encourage the contestant’s exploration of a variety of literary selections, and to enhance the performer’s and audience’s appreciation of literature through the performer’s interpretation of the work.


Prose Interpretation:  Presentation time – 8 minutes    

Those with a flair for expressive oral reading have a chance to combine their passions in this event. You’ll select a piece of prose in a given category, then carefully explore the art of expressing it orally before an audience. This contest encourages the student to understand, experience and share prose works through the art of oral interpretation. It encourages the contestant’s exploration of a variety of literary selections and enhances the performer’s and audience’s appreciation of literature through the performer’s interpretation of the work.


Ready Writing:  

Ready, set, write! If you like to make your own path, this contest is for you. A short prompt will provide the inspiration for your creative ideas as you explore a topic or prove a point. Students write expository compositions that attempt to explain, prove or explore a topic in a balanced way, allowing the argument and the evidence given to be the deciding factor in the paper. Students are given a choice between two prompts, each an excerpt from literature, publications or speeches. The essay is judged on interest, organization and style.


Robotics:  Team competition only, no individuals. 

Do you like to design, problem solve and come up with solution?  Then come join our team.  Our team will design, build and compete a robot!  We will be given a box of materials – servos, DC motor, transmitter, controller, drive components, USB, plywood, plastics, metal, hardware and PVC, from the BEST (Boosting, Engineering, Science and Technology) organization and we will work together to build a robot.  We will take the robot to compete in the Cowtown BEST competition in the fall.  We need several team members to make this happen with leaders in the following areas:  robot design, graphics arts, journalism, marketing, and computer science. 



Forget just memorizing facts, because the science contest is all about the importance of experiments and scientific discoveries. Your knowledge of biology, chemistry and physics will help you select the correct answers on this 60-question multiple-choice test. Individual awards are given in each subject area, so even students who have not yet taken all the science courses can excel! The Science Contest challenges students to read widely in biology, chemistry and physics, to understand the significance of experiments rather than to recall obscure details, and to be alert to new discoveries and information in the areas of science. It is designed to help students gain an understanding of the basic principles as well as knowledge of the history and philosophy of science, and to foster a sense of enthusiasm about science and how it affects our daily lives.


Social Studies:  (2017 topic – Madison’s Gift:  Five Partnerships that Built America) 

If your interest lies in movements, wars, history and politics, this contest will give you more than enough material to explore. The contest requires you to apply your understanding of history and culture through multiple-choice questions and an essay. The Social Studies Contest requires students to expand and apply their knowledge of governmental systems, historical trends, movements and eras and the physical setting of the earth, particularly as it applies to cultural environments.


Spelling and Vocabulary

Whether you’ve already aced the SAT verbal section or you could use some extra practice, this contest keeps you focused on the details. By the end, you may be correcting your teachers’ spelling and using words your coach has never heard. The Spelling & Vocabulary Contest promotes precise and effective use of words. The three-part contest consists of multiple-choice questions covering proofreading and vocabulary, and words that are written from dictation. The vocabulary-building and spelling components of the contest are important complements to the high school academic curriculum and are indicative of vocabulary words contained on standardized tests such as SAT, PSAT and ACT.


Theatrical Design:  submitted on line   

Provides an opportunity for students to develop their skills in design and in marketing.  It teaches the students critical thinking and analysis, creative thinking and artistic skills used to communicate an idea or concept.  Theatrical Design offers contest in Set Design, Costume Design, Marketing, Makeup and Group Design. 


UIL manager: This person will be helping with many things such as: taking lots of pictures/videos at competitions,
keep track of ALL rewards, write stories for the newspaper and radio shows, help get students to places in a timely
manner (keep an eye on the clock) while I work with my UIL teams, file ballots, keep an eye on Brock items at
meets, keep Brock tables clear of clutter at meets, put together awards flyer for end of year celebration, ….


Letter jacket qualifications

o   Score individual or team points at a regional academic meet

o   Score individual or team points at two district meets (two different years)

o   Compete in the district meet for three years.