Canadian Mathematical Society
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Who Wants to be a Mathematician?

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Are you looking for a chance to reward and showcase your best math students -- and the chance to share the winning contestant's US$10,000 award with your math department?

The American Mathematical Society (AMS) is again conducting its championship contest, Who Wants to Be a Mathematician, for high school students in the US, Canada, and UK with a top prize of US$5,000 for the winning student and US$5,000 for the math department of that student’s school. There is no fee to participate.

When/where: The 2018 contest will take place Saturday, January 13 in San Diego, California (USA) as part of the Joint Mathematics Meetings.

Qualifying test: Contestants are chosen based on their scores on qualifying tests. There are two rounds of tests, which will be conducted online (but if you absolutely can't do the test online, we can send you a hard copy) thanks to Maplesoft, the national Who Wants to Be a Mathematician technology sponsor. The first round will be Sept. 19 through Oct. 3 (closing at 5:00 p.m. Eastern). There will also be a practice test available so you and your students can become accustomed to the test procedure. The AMS strongly advises practicing so that you and your students are familiar with the system when it's time to take the round one test.

Qualifying procedure: Teachers should reply to this email or write and let us know that you'd like to participate. You may want to whitelist, just to make sure the message gets through. Starting Sept. 7 the AMS Public Awareness Office will send you an Excel file with login names and passwords for your students in addition to a teacher/proctor password for you. The test is a timed (15-minute), closed-book, no-calculator (and no other electronic help) test.

AoPS gift certificates: Each school that participates in qualifying will receive a code to obtain a $30 gift certificate from the Art of Problem Solving (AoPS), our Online Community Sponsor. The gift certificates are valid towards the purchase of any AoPS-published book or an enrollment in any AoPS online class, and expire at the end of the 2017-18 school year.

Reminder for under-13 contestants: Because of U.S. law, contestants under the age of 13 must take the written test, not the online test.

Deadline: The first-round testing period ends at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Sept. 25. Students who score eight or above on the 10-question first-round test will move on to the second round of testing in October. The AMS will select 10 contestants from different regions of the U.S. and one from Canada to compete in the 2018 contest in January in San Diego.

Contest format: There will be two semi-final games in San Diego. The winners of the two semifinals will go “head-to-head” in the finals for the national championship. The champion will win US$5,000 for himself or herself, US$5,000 for your math department, a traveling trophy for you to display at the school until the 2019 contest, a trophy for the school/department to keep, and an individual trophy for the winner to keep.

All contestants will win prizes, cash for themselves, and cash for your department (the minimum cash prize is US$500 for the student and US$500 for the department). The AMS will reimburse reasonable travel expenses and room and board for each contestant and a parent/guardian for a maximum of two nights. Contestants and their parent(s)/guardian(s) are welcome to attend other events at the meeting free of charge.

From past participants: "Thanks so much for this amazing opportunity, and our school certainly appreciates the support, too!"

"Thanks so much for everything! The entire competition was an amazing experience that was unlike anything I've ever been a part of."

See more about the contest at

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