International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) is a competitive exam conducted by the Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF) in around thirty countries. SOF, the organizer of IMO exam, is an educational foundation established in the year 1999. The organization instills a competitive spirit in students to promote academic competition. For over two decades, it has been striving to propel scientific aptitude through innovative activities. Apart from International Mathematics Olympiad, some of the prominent olympiad exams conducted by SOF in India and many other countries are National Science Olympiad (NSO), National Cyber Olympiad (NCO), International English Olympiad (IEO), and International General Knowledge Olympiad (IGKO).
Overview of IMO Exam
International Math Olympiad is a math competition for students studying in state boards, CBSE and ICSE/ISE schools across various countries. The exam enables elementary, middle, and high school students to compete with their peers on both national and international levels. IMO exam usually is organized in the latter half of the year. There are two levels of the olympiad exam.
- Level-1 IMO exam is held on three different dates between December and February.
- Level-2 IMO exam for higher grades is conducted in the month of July.
Math Olympiad level-1 exam is open for all students studying in grades 1 to 12. There is no eligibility criteria to participate in the level-1 IMO exam. Olympiad level-2 exam is for students from grades 3 to 12 who have qualified for the olympiad level-1 exam. Level-1 olympiad class toppers, top-25 zone/state rankers, and top 5 percent of international participants are eligible for the level-2 olympiad exam.
Eligibility Criteria for IMO
There is no eligibility criterion for the level-1 exam like minimum marks or percentage. For participating in the level-2 IMO exam, students have to qualify the level-1 IMO exam. Students from classes 1 and 2 are not required to appear for the level-2 olympiad exam and are ranked based on their performance in the first level.
Syllabus for IMO Exam
The syllabus of the International Mathematics Olympiad is according to the curriculum of the respective class. There is a separate question paper for each class with questions from different chapters of mathematics segregated into four categories. As per the IMO syllabus, the four sections are-- Logical Reasoning, Mathematical Reasoning, Everyday Mathematics and Achievers Section.
IMO Exam Pattern
For classes 1 to 4 IMO level-1 exam, there are 35 questions to be answered in 60 minutes. These questions are based on 4 sections-- there are 10 questions from logical reasoning, 10 questions from mathematical reasoning, 10 questions from everyday mathematics, and 5 questions from the achievers section.
For classes 5 to 12 the IMO level-1 exam has 50 questions and a time limit of 60 minutes. It has 4 sections with 15 questions from logical reasoning, 20 from mathematical reasoning, 10 from everyday mathematics, and 5 from achievers section.
IMO level-2 competition consists of 35 objective-type questions (MCQs) for grades 3 & 4 and 50 objective-type questions (MCQs) for grades 5 to 12. The IMO level-2 exam paper contains only two sections, viz. mathematics and achievers section.
Registration Process for IMO
For appearing in IMO, students have to complete the exam registration process. They can either apply for the exam through their schools or individually. Schools registered with SOF across countries are provided with the registration forms and other necessary details. Students can directly apply through their respective schools. Schools not registered with SOF can request the prospectus through an email to [email protected] or call at 0124-4951200.
IMO Exam Dates
The SOF IMO is usually held in the latter half of the year around December. The level-1 exam happens in three sets or sessions on different dates- Set A, Set B, and Set C. The question paper for all dates is different— a tentative timeline for IMO exam dates can be found on the SOF website. As per the exams conducted in the previous years, the tentative dates for the level-1 exam is between December and February, whereas the exam date for the level-2 olympiad is somewhere between 14 to 24 July.
Declaration of IMO Results
Results of Olympiads are declared within eight weeks of the examination. The results are sent to the participating schools. Students can also see their results that are made available on the SOF website( https://sofworld.org).
Preparation for IMO
Preparing for Maths Olympiad requires thorough knowledge and familiarity with the mathematics curriculum prescribed for a particular class. However, it is important to remember that the IMO exams take into consideration the mathematics curriculum of different state boards, CBSE and ICSE. Practicing questions from textbooks of all the boards will be highly beneficial.
Students appearing in the IMO exam are eligible for certain awards based on their performance. For IMO level-1 the awards are given to the top 25 rankers at the zonal level is a medal of distinction and a certificate. The rest of the participants receive a certification of participation.
Awards for level 2 exam International level:
- Rank 1 is awarded Rs. 50,000, certificate of outstanding performance, and the International gold medal. (12 awards).
- Rank 2 will be awarded Rs. 25,000, certificate of outstanding performance, and International silver medal. (12 awards).
- Rank 3 will be awarded Rs. 10,000, certificate of outstanding performance, and International bronze medal.( 12 rewards)
Apart from ranks and rewards, IMO is an excellent platform to attain global recognition for students that is highly beneficial for their academics and career growth.
Studying for the math olympiad will promote the logical thinking of students and will drive them towards the right career path. To get an idea about the math olympiad exam pattern download and solve the latest sample papers for classes 1-12 provided below.
FAQs on International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO)
What is the eligibility criteria for the IMO Exam?
All students from classes 1 to 12 are eligible for the first level of the IMO Exam. To appear in the second level of the IMO Exam, you need to qualify the first level of the IMO Exam.
What is the syllabus of the IMO Exam?
The syllabus of IMO depends on the academic syllabus of the respective class. The IMO syllabus consists of 4 sections.
- Section-1: Everyday Mathematics
- Section-2: Logical Reasoning
- Section-3: Achievers Section
- Section-4: Mathematical Reasoning
Is the IMO Exam online?
Till 2019, the exam used to be conducted in offline mode but because of the pandemic, the IMO exam was conducted online in the year 2020. It will be conducted online for the year 2021 as well. For the year 2022, it will be decided at a later point in time.
Is Calculator allowed in the IMO Exam?
No, calculators are not allowed in the examination hall. Students can only use pen/pencil and paper for their rough work. Students need to solve the questions manually to get the correct answers.
How to apply for the IMO Exam?
If the student’s school is affiliated with SOF then you can directly apply through school administration otherwise you can request registration by sending an email to [email protected] or call at 0124-4951200.