Quiz of the year

December 22, 2006



a. "I always remember that no matter how bad it gets, it's never as bad as freezing your nuts off in the trenches"

b. "If we are really going to do our dirty washing in public, let us look at the biggest bundle - the national pay dispute"

c. "This is all utter bollocks."

1. Paul Mackney, University and College Union joint general secretary 2. David Hall, Leicester University's registrar and former soldier with the Royal Green Jackets

3. Eric Thomas, vice-chancellor of Bristol University, on suggestions that a metric-based funding system would shift cash from the arts and humanities into science.


a. The drummer with which popular band had parents who were both academics at Southampton University?

b. The keyboard player with which 1990s pop band now researches particle physics at Manchester University?

c. Which band's bass guitarist sits on the Space Advisory Committee of the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory?

1. Alex James, Blur

2. Will Champion, Coldplay

3. Brian Cox, D:Ream.


Match the person to the money

a. £30,000

b. £15 million

c. £305,000

1. Estimated personal wealth of Steve Davies, of Oxford University's chemistry department, who founded Oxford Asymmetry

2. Annual salary of Sir Richard Sykes, rector of Imperial College London, in 2004-05

3. Earnings made by Westminster University lecturer Russell Stannard for his bestselling teachers' guide to an English course for Chinese children.


a. decided to name all academics "professor" after adopting the US system of academic titles?

b. witnessed a marked increase in the number of top honours degrees awarded - from 63 per cent last year to 72 per cent - after reforms introduced during the year's pay dispute?

c. planned to incorporate compulsory lectures on creationism and intelligent design for zoology and genetics undergraduates?

1. Leeds

2. Warwick

3. Liverpool;


Match the following numbers

a. Percentage of 17 to 30-year-olds in England who were in higher education in 2004-05

b. Percentage of academics who failed to take two weeks or more of their leave entitlement

c. Percentage pay increase over three years demanded during the pay dispute.

1. 42 per cent

2. 40 per cent

3. 21.3 per cent


Which one said what?

a. "My impression is there were a lot of people who weren't really questioning, they were posturing. 'I will join the Communist Party and I will be a Trotskyist because it's the done thing to be.'"

b. "There are still plenty of Judes out there in obscurity"

c. "Man hands on misery to man. It deepens like a coastal shelf. Get out as early as you can. And don't have any kids yourself."

1. Boris Johnson, Tory Higher Education Spokesperson

2. Gerry Johnson, Strathclyde University's professor of strategic management

3. Alan Johnson, Education Secretary, speaking at a fringe event on social mobility at the Labour conference.


a. "It gives you such intense concentration that you're divorced from your work, and I've felt much sharper academically afterwards because I cleared my mind"

b. "It's not an antidote to academic life, but it's certainly not an extension of it either, and at the moment I have no desire to let either part go"

c. "Begoggled, amphibian-footed and carrying a toasting fork fixed to a bamboo pole".

1. Diving

2. Dry-stone walling

3. Comedy writing


a. can you learn how to manage an alpine goat?

b. are university cleaners trained in counselling?

c. is a university building named after the childhood nanny of the donor who paid for it?

1. St Francis Xavier University, Nova Scotia, Canada

2. University of L'Aquila, Italy

3. Sheffield Hallam University.

Answers to the Quiz of the year

Quotes : a. 2; b. 1; c. 3

Pop stars :

a. 2 - Coldplay's Will Champion, whose late mother Sara and father Tim worked in the university's archaeology department;

b. 3 - Brian Cox, from 1990s pop band D:Ream;

c.1 - Blur's bass guitarist Alex James.

Who got the cash?

a. 3; b. 1; c. 2

Which university?

a. 2; b. 3; c. 1


a. 1; b. 2; c. 3


a. 2; b. 1; c. 3


a. 2 - Dry-stone walling is the hobby of Mark Kelmanson of Leeds University;

b. 3 - Aberdeen University's Greg Gordon's view of comedy writing; and

c. 1 - Diving as described by Trevor Norton, an emeritus professor of Liverpool University

World : a. 2; b. 3; c. 1

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