Rules of the contest

The goal of The Big Challenge

The main goal of the BIG CHALLENGE is to promote the learning of English through a fun and educational activity. For this event to be a success and create real motivation among the students, it must bring together as many participants as possible within the school.

Who is it for?

The contest is open to all primary and secondary school students who have chosen to learn English.

Although the contest is not initially aimed at English-speaking students or those with a high level of English acquired outside the classroom, they may still take part. However, they will be placed outside the contest ranking. In recognition of their participation, these students will nevertheless receive a compensation prize.

Once students have been registered for the contest, the registration coordinator is required to communicate the first and last names of the students concerned by the above-mentioned English-speaking status.

How to take part?

In each school, a member of the educational team, designated internally as the BIG CHALLENGE COORDINATOR, will register his or her school online. He/she will act as an intermediary between the contest secretariat, the various teachers who want their students to take part and the school’s administrative services (bursar’s office, etc.). The details of the contest (web link, etc.), the final ranking and the prizes will be sent to the coordinator for all the classes in order to simplify organisation.

The minimum number of students to be registered in the contest per school is 36, all class levels combined. You may still enter fewer than 36 students, but you must pay the entry fee for 36 students.

Schools that are unable to hold the test on the scheduled date may contact us for an exemption.

The funding

THE BIG CHALLENGE does not benefit from any financial support, and is financed entirely by the fee charged for each student :

  • The Big Challenge CONTEST : 

The financial contribution covers all the costs of the contest (production and publication of information letters, posters, questionnaires, etc.), the costs of developing and hosting the online contest – including in particular the problems of scaling up, the costs of correction, organisation and management, and finally the purchase and dispatch of all the prizes awarded to the participants. It also covers the year-round costs of the games, activities and content of the PLAY application, which students can access from September onwards (development, maintenance, server hosting and constant optimisation of security for data protection in compliance with the RGPD).

Le paiement

Ces frais de participation peuvent ĂȘtre rĂ©glĂ©s soit par les familles des Ă©lĂšves, soit par le FSE de l’Ă©tablissement ou par l’Ă©tablissement lui-mĂȘme, ou bien encore payĂ©s partiellement par le collĂšge (1,50 € par exemple) et les familles des Ă©lĂšves. Les frais d’inscription doivent ĂȘtre rĂ©glĂ©s en totalitĂ© au moment de l’inscription et au plus tard le jour de la date limite d’inscription fixĂ©e pour l’annĂ©e en cours, de façon Ă  pouvoir financer l’achat de tous les prix qui seront expĂ©diĂ©s au moment des rĂ©sultats. Une fois enregistrĂ©es et rĂ©glĂ©es, les inscriptions ne pourront en aucun cas ĂȘtre annulĂ©es et remboursĂ©es. En revanche, tous les prix ayant Ă©tĂ© achetĂ©s, ils seront envoyĂ©s au collĂšge pour la totalitĂ© des inscrits, que les Ă©lĂšves soient prĂ©sents ou non au moment de l’épreuve. Une facture justificative sera dĂ©livrĂ©e uniquement sur demande. Pour les Ă©tablissements des dĂ©partements et collectivitĂ©s d’outre-mer ainsi que des collĂšges français Ă  l’étranger, un complĂ©ment de participation correspondant aux frais supplĂ©mentaires d’expĂ©dition sera demandĂ©.

How it works

  Contest Online and Flexible
Date of the contest

27th March – 29th April 2024 

The date and time of the test is chosen according to the organisation of the school. To facilitate organisation, it is possible to plan several test sessions on the same day for each year group and on different days for different years.

Test duration 45 minutes
Participation rules

The contest consists of a quiz with multiple-choice questions. For each question there are four possible answers. The aim of the game is to tick the box corresponding to the one correct answer. The questions cover vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation and civilisation. A specific questionnaire is developed for each grade (from primary to secondary school) to fit in perfectly with the school syllabus. The test is strictly individual, with no external help or accessories (books, dictionaries, search engines, etc.). It is carried out under the responsibility of a teacher or a member of the educational team, who is responsible for its development according to the rules.

The assessment

Number of questions   55 questions
Points for correct answer  
    • 25 easy questions (worth 4 points)
    • 15 medium-difficulty questions (5 points value)
    • 15 difficult questions (6-point value)
Points for incorrect answer  
  • If a category 1 question is answered incorrectly, the 4 marks are not awarded and 1 mark is lost.
  • If a category 2 question is answered incorrectly, 5 marks will not be awarded and 1,25 marks will be forfeited.
  • If a category 3 question is answered incorrectly, 6 marks will not be awarded and 1,50 marks will be forfeited.
Non-response points   If no answer is given, the question counts as 0 points. If more than one answer is given, the question also counts as 0 points.
Bonus points   In order to avoid the risk of obtaining a mark of 0 or less, the mark obtained by adding up all the points is increased by 85 points. Thus, each student’s mark will be between 18.75 and 350 points.
The answer to a 4-point question is correct. + 4
The answer to a 4-point question is incorrect. – 1
The answer to a 5-point question is correct. + 5
The answer to a 5-point question is incorrect. – 1,25
No answer to a question 0
The answer to a 6-point question is correct. + 6
The answer to a 6-point question is incorrect. – 1,50
Two answers are given to the same question 0
Total 11,25 points

11,25 + 85 = 96,25 points

For this example, the final score would be 96.25 out of 350.

Correction and Rankings

The score and rankings obtained by each participant in the school will be sent to THE BIG CHALLENGE Coordinator on the date indicated in the contest calendar. The prizes will then be shipped to schools. All the results will be destroyed on 31 July 2024. Beyond that date, no claims will be accepted.

For each of the 5 class levels, three rankings will be established: national, regional and school. In the case of a tie among the 30 top students at the national level and the 5 top students at the regional level for each class, winners will be designated with priority given to the student who answered the most questions. If a tie subsists, students will be ranked from youngest to oldest.


THE BIG CHALLENGE offers prizes for all registered students. Other levels of prizes are awarded according to the different rankings obtained by the students:

  • Per student: regardless of their ranking, each registered student will receive an Official Certificate as well as a BIG CHALLENGE diploma and a small gift related to the English language.
  • By school: regardless of the marks obtained by its students, each school will also receive prizes for the participants who have obtained the best results in the different levels. The number of prizes awarded to the school for its students will be directly proportional to the number of students taking part. This means that over 50% of students will receive an additional prize. In each school, the top student in his or her level will receive a superb The School Award medal. There is just one condition to be met in terms of entries: the school must enter a minimum of 80 students in total, or there must be 20 or more students entered in the level.
  • By region:

The number of winners will be announced at the end of the contest. The winners in each region will receive special prizes, including beautiful cups.

  • At national level:

The number of winners will be announced at the end of the contest. The national winners will also receive special prizes, including beautiful cups.

  • The BOOST Award: from among all the pupils who have given the correct answer to at least half of the questions in the competition, a draw will be held to select those who will each win a BOOST Award SPECIAL PRIZE.
  • The CHALLENGE Award: among all the students who took part last year and who register their results on their Big Challenge account, and whose marks have improved this year compared with last year, there will be a draw to select those who will each win a SPECIAL CHALLENGE AWARD PRIZE.

Please note:

A student taking part in the contest several years in a row, consecutively or not, can only win a national prize once. If a student were to win a national prize more than once during his or her school career, he or she would keep his or her mark but would be classed out of the contest and the prizes normally won would automatically be awarded to the next participant. Students who win a national prize will not also receive the departmental prizes. National and departmental winners will also not receive the School, Boost or Challenge Awards.