The 94th Scripps National Spelling Bee

This year, 234 spellers earned their spots as national competitors by advancing through regional bees, competing against students representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Department of Defense Schools in Europe. Spellers will also represent four countries outside the U.S.: the Bahamas, Canada, Germany and Ghana.


Spellers will compete in four segments of competition to determine who will take home the Scripps Cup: the Preliminaries, Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Finals. All rounds of competition will be broadcast on ION platforms.


Keep reading for more details about exciting elements first introduced in 2021, including word meaning rounds and the spell-off option for concluding the Bee.

As national news about rising cases and vulnerability has increased over recent weeks, we worked together with our production crew union representatives to swiftly put new COVID protocols in place for Bee Week. Among the measures taken:


-    All spellers will be tested for COVID-19 (rapid PCR test) upon arrival at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center on Monday, May 30. A negative test result will be required to participate in Bee Week activities, including the competition.

-    All Bee Week staff, including TV production staff, will be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival and on a continuing schedule based on roles. 

-    All spellers will be masked onstage except when actively competing. 

-    All spellers will be masked when in backstage TV production areas except when being interviewed. 

-    Masks will be required in marked areas of the Bee’s space at the Gaylord.

-    Masks will be strongly encouraged for all Bee Week attendees (including spellers, families, guests, members of the media and staff) in the remainder of the Bee’s space and at all Bee Week events.


Refer to our FAQ for more information.


You can read the Contest Rules for the 2022 Scripps National Spelling Bee to learn more about what to expect from this year's Bee. We've highlighted two special elements of the competition below:

Word Meaning Rounds

The second round of each segment of competition – the Preliminaries, Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Finals – will be a word meaning round, which will require the speller to orally select the correct multiple choice answer to a vocabulary question read by the pronouncer. This element of the competition, introduced in 2021, is designed to challenge the spellers and further advance the Bee’s focus on word knowledge and literacy.


Historically, the competition ends when a speller spells correctly in a one-person, one-word round and is declared champion. However, the officials can choose to activate a spell-off to declare a winner. Each speller remaining in the competition would have 90 seconds to spell as many words as they could from a predetermined spell-off list of words. After all spellers remaining in the competition had competed in the spell-off, the speller who spelled the most words correctly would be declared champion.

This Year's Prizes

For their participation in the Bee, our national finalists receive a number of awards and prizes from the Bee and our prize sponsors. View every level of the prize structure for this year, from all spellers to the Champion!

Prize List