Competition Rules & FAQ
What exactly does a MATHCOUNTS competition consist of and what changes has MATHCOUNTS made for 2020-2021?
- Students will compete in 4 levels of competition: chapter, chapter invitational, state and national.
- The Competition Series is designed as a school-based competition, and schools can register 1-15 students to compete at the chapter level and beyond. For this year only, any student whose school will not register and will not support the student’s participation through the school can register as a Non-School Competitor (NSC). Learn more about NSC eligibility in the Official Rules + Procedures.
- The Chapter, Chapter Invitational and State Competitions will be conducted online on the AoPS Contest Platform. The National Competition is planned as an in-person event.
- In the first 3 levels of competition, every student competes as an individual and takes the Sprint and Target Rounds, which are designed to take 70-80 minutes to complete. At the National Competition, students also compete in a Team Round and a fast-paced, bee-style Countdown Round.
- In addition to the mailed kit of materials and online resources, MATHCOUNTS will provide 4 online practice competitions. These will be released each month starting in October 2020. Registered schools receive access to the first three practices for their 1-15 official competitors, plus up to 50 additional students from the school. The January practice competition will only be available to registered schools' 1-15 official competitors.
How do students advance to each level of competition?
- Advancing to the Chapter Competition: For school-based competitors, advancement is determined by the coach at their school. NSCs automatically compete at the Chapter Competition, as this is included with their registration.
- Advancing to the Chapter Invitational Competition: The top student from each school and the top 20% of students from each chapter (based on their scores on the Sprint and Target Rounds) advance to the Chapter Invitational Competition. NSCs are not considered schools, and therefore can advance to this level only by scoring in the top 20% in their chapter.
- Advancing to the State Competition: The top 5 students from each chapter and the 10 next highest scoring students in the state (based on their scores on the Sprint and Target Rounds) advance to the State Competition. Additional state level advancement details will be announced prior to the Chapter Invitational.
- Advancing to the National Competition: The top students (up to 4) from each state (based on their scores on the Sprint and Target Rounds) advance to the 2021 Raytheon Technologies MATHCOUNTS National Competition. Additional national level advancement details will be announced prior to the State Competition.
Are there awards for each level of competition?
Is the MATHCOUNTS Competition Series in my area?
Who is eligible to compete?
When are the competitions and what happens if I have a conflict of dates for my local competition?
- Online practice competitions: released on October 15, 2020, November 15, 2020, December 15, 2020 and January 22, 2021. Coaches determine the 1-15 students who will represent their school at the Chapter Competition. All of a school's registered competitors (1-15 students), plus up to 50 additional students at the school, will have access to the first three practice competitions. The January practice competition will only be available to a school's registered competitors (1-15 students).
- 2021 Chapter Competition: February 5-6, 2021 online. Students will have a 24-hour period to take the test (1:00pm ET on February 5 through 1:00pm ET on February 6).
- 2021 Chapter Invitational Competition: February 25, 2021 online. All students will be required to take this test at the same time: 7:00pm ET.
- 2021 State Competition: March 25, 2021 online. All students will be required to take this test at the same time: 7:00pm ET.
- 2021 Raytheon Technologies MATHCOUNTS National Competition: May 9-10 in Washington, DC.
Can a school participate in more than one MATHCOUNTS program?
How do schools register for the Competition Series?
- Registering and paying through the MATHCOUNTS Foundation
- Setting up online access to the AoPS Contest Platform
- Register online here. This is our preferred method with faster processing, so you'll get your materials sooner!
- Download the offline form here. You can email this form to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail it to MATHCOUNTS Competition Series Registration, 1420 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314.
How do non-school competitors (NSCs) register for the Competition Series?
- Registering and paying through the MATHCOUNTS Foundation
- Setting up online access to the AoPS Contest Platform
My student’s school isn’t registered for the Competition Series. How do I sign up?
- Check with the school’s administration and math department to ensure a program is not already established at the school. You also should refer to the list of Registered Competition Schools for 2020-2021 to see if a teacher already has registered.
- Get permission from the school administration to register, if there is no program already established and you would like to start one. We recommend having this permission in writing from a school administrator to keep for your records.
- If you receive permission from the school administration to register, complete a school-based registration at www.mathcounts.org/compreg.
- If the school will not register for the Competition Series and will not support your child’s participation in the program through the school, complete an NSC registration at www.mathcounts.org/compreg.
What is the difference between a home school student, a virtual school student and an NSC? How do I know what type of registration I should complete?
- A home school student is a student whose official school of record is a home school—even if some of their coursework is done through a virtual program or service. Home school students should not register as NSCs and instead should register as school-based competitors and complete the 2020-2021 Home School Participation Form.
- A virtual school student is a student whose official school of record is a virtual school—even if that student is doing their coursework at home. Virtual school students should first try to register as school-based competitors through their virtual school by contacting school administrators/educators. A virtual school student should register as an NSC only if their virtual school will not register for the Competition Series and will not support their participation through the school.
- An NSC is a student whose school—whether virtual or brick-and-mortar—will not register for the Competition Series and will not support their participation through the school.
My child is enrolled at a brick-and-mortar school but this year is taking all their classes in virtual school. How do we register?
How do I indicate in my registration which students are team members and which students are individuals?
Where is the offline registration form for NSCs?
How much does it cost to participate?
- $30 per student for school-based registrations
- $60 for an NSC
- $35 per student for school-based registrations
- $65 for an NSC
- $40 per student for school-based registrations
- $70 for an NSC
What is included with my registration?
- Entry into the Chapter Competition. Schools can send however many students they register (1-15 students per school). NSCs are considered 1 student.
- The mailed School Competition Kit, with a hard copy of the MATHCOUNTS School Handbook, participation certificates and ribbons.
- Competition entry for the school’s students for as far as they progress in the Competition Series. If a student progresses to the state or national level, there are no additional registration fees required.
How can I obtain a copy of the MATHCOUNTS W-9 form?
What forms of payment are accepted? Can I pay with a credit card?
- Credit card information cannot be provided on offline registration forms. To pay with a credit card, either 1) register online or 2) submit an offline form and select “Credit Card” as your payment option so MATHCOUNTS can send you an electronic invoice to accept payment.
- POs can be used with either online or offline registrations. The PO number must be provided if registering online, and a copy of the PO must be included with offline registration forms.
How can I get an invoice for my school’s Competition Series registration?
If I already have submitted my registration, can I add additional students at a later date?
How can I get a refund for my Competition Series registration?
Where can I find the MATHCOUNTS School Handbook with solutions?
What happened to the School Competition? How do I select my official chapter competitors without a School Competition?
When can I expect to receive my mailed School Competition Kit?
How do I submit the names of my students who will be competing at the chapter level?
When do I need to submit the names of my students who will be competing at the chapter level?
How do I get to the AoPS Contest Platform?
My school is registered, and I am listed as a coach. Why can’t I access the Coach Dashboard?
When can I expect to receive information about my local chapter competition?
- Date: The Chapter Competition will be open from February 5, 2021 at 1:00pm ET through February 6, 2021 at 1:00pm ET. Students will be required to complete the test in one sitting (and will finish in 70-80 minutes), but can do so anytime during that 24-hour window.
- Location: The online competition will take place through the AoPS Contest Platform.
- Student information: Coaches must submit student information through the AoPS Contest Platform by January 15, 2021.
- Other details: Click here for additional details related to the online Chapter Competition process.
What are the technical requirements to use the AoPS Contest Platform?
As a coach, how do I join the AoPS Contest Platform?
I’m a coach. What is the purpose of my Coach Portal?
How do my students join my school or a competition on the AoPS Contest Platform?
Students registered through their school:
Non-school competitors (NSCs):
- If they are 13 or older, they will confirm their email address and then proceed to a Student Information Form, which must be completed to finalize their Student account and access their Student Portal.
- If they are under the age of 13, AoPS will send a COPPA Parental Permission Form to the email address provided. This form must be signed by the parent or legal guardian and returned to AoPS via one of the methods listed on the form. Once this form is returned to AoPS and processed, their Student account will be activated, and they will be able to proceed to a Student Information Form, which must be completed to finalize their Student account and access their Student Portal.
How many students can take the online Practice Competitions from my school?
How do my students participate in the practice or official competitions?
Students who have created their Student account can log in to their Student Portal. When a practice or official competition time window starts, a "Start" button will appear in the Student Portal. This will take the student to a page where they can review the details of the competition before beginning. Once they begin, they will be presented with the problems and can type answers into entry boxes.
- Practice Competition #1: Sprint Round 15; Target Round 4; Team Round 5
- Practice Competition #2: Sprint Round 25; Target Round 6; Team Round 8
- Practice Competition #3: Sprint Round 30; Target Round 8; Team Round 10
- Practice Competition #4: Sprint Round 30; Target Round 8
- Chapter, Chapter Invitational and State Competitions: Sprint Round 30, Target Round 8
How long will each of the competitions take to complete?
- Sprint: 40 minutes
- Target: 6 minutes per pair of problems
- Team (for practice competitions #1-3 only): 20 minutes
Once a student begins taking the competition (starting with agreeing to the Honor code), the student must complete the Sprint Round (40 minutes) and Target Rounds (6 minutes for each pair of problems). There are short breaks that will take place (10 minutes between the Sprint Round and first Target Round pair; 1 minute between each Target Round pair), but students must complete the Sprint and Target Rounds in one sitting. For an Online Practice Competition with a Team Round component, the Team Round can be completed at a different time.
How do coaches designate official competitors who will represent the school at online Practice Competition #4 and the 2021 Chapter Competition?
By what date do I have to have my official competitors (the ones taking online Practice Competition #4 and the Chapter Competition) identified in my Coach Portal?
You must identify your school's official competitors on your Coach Portal by January 15, 2021.
Will there be a Team Round at any level of competition?
How do I form a team of students for the optional Team Round during the online Practice Competitions?
How does the Team Round for Practice Competitions #1-3 work?
- Before the team contest, each team should make their plan for when they'll take the contest and what they'll use to communicate. The AoPS Contest Platform only provides the contest problems, not a way for team members to speak or collaborate.
- Only the Team Leader (Team Member #1 as designated by the coach in their Coach Portal) can start the contest for the team. All team members can click "Start Contest" to view instructions, but they will not be able to proceed to taking the contest and viewing the problems until the Team Leader begins.
- Once the Team Leader begins the contest for the team, they will proceed to a 1-minute "Team Waiting Room" that all team members can join.
- At the end of the minute, all team members will automatically move to the contest and the 20-minute timer will begin.
- During the contest, all team members will be able to view the contest problems. Only the Team Leader can enter answers for the team.
- The Team Round will automatically be submitted when the 20-minute timer is done. The timer cannot be paused once it has started, and the round cannot be submitted early. Team members can stay on the contest until the timer runs out, or leave the page early. The last saved answers (entered by the Team Leader) will be automatically submitted at the contest end time.
How long will the online Practice Competitions be available to students?
Online Practice Competitions #1, 2 and 3 will be available to students from the competition launch date through February 28, 2021. Online Practice Competition #4 is designed and intended to mimic the Chapter Competition experience, so it will be limited to the 24-hour period of 1:00 PM ET on January 22, 2021 to 1:00 PM ET on January 23, 2021, and is only available to a school's "official competitors" as identified by the school coach.