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Competition FAQ

Competition Series Frequently Asked Questions

What is the cost?

The cost of registering for the MATHCOUNTS Competition Series depends on when the registration form is submitted.

  • Early Bird Rate: Registrations received (postmarked) by Nov. 3, 2017 will pay $30 per student. Schools can register up to 10 students (1 team of 4 + 6 individuals).
  • Regular Rate: Registrations received (postmarked) by Dec. 15, 2017 will pay $35 per student. Schools can register up to 10 students (1 team of 4 + 6 individuals).

Title I schools receive a 50% discount on the registration fees. All schools with registrations postmarked after Dec. 15, 2017 will be charged a $20 late fee, added to the total cost of the school's registration. The registration fees cover the cost of the School Competition Kit, with materials for running a school competition; as well as entry into the Chapter Competition for however many students a school registers (1-10 students). The registration fee covers the students for as far as they progress in the Competition Series, meaning that if a student progresses to his/her state competition, there are not additional registration fees.


How do I register for the Competition Series?

To register for the MATHCOUNTS Competition Series, you can do one of the following:

  • Click here and register online. We prefer online registrations and can process them faster, meaning you'll get your materials sooner!
  • Download the 2017-2018 Registration Form here, complete it and submit it to the MATHCOUNTS national office.


How do I bring the MATHCOUNTS Competition to my child's school, if they don't already have a program set up?

A teacher can register his/her school for the Competition Series. Parents can also serve as Competition Coaches, but must have permission from the school administration before signing up for the program. If you are a parent who would like to start up a Competition Series team at your child's school, here are a couple of ways to go about starting it:

  • Get in touch with the math department or math teachers at your child's school and see if a teacher has already registered or plans to register for the Competition Series. You then can talk to the teacher to get your child involved with the team.
  • If you're sure a program is not already established at your school, then you can talk to the math department or math teachers at your child's school to see if a teacher would like to serve as the Competition Coach. This teacher then can register the school for the Competition Series.
  • If no teacher is able to run the Competition Series at your child's school, reach out to the school principal, curriculum specialist or other administrator to ask if you can sign up the school. Note, even if your child is the only individual competing from his/her school, permission from the school administration is required, since s/he is still considered a representative of the school.


Who sponsors the program?

MATHCOUNTS was founded by the National Society of Professional Engineers, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and CNA Foundation. Raytheon is the Title Sponsor of the 2018 National Competition. MATHCOUNTS is made possible through the generosity of corporations, foundations and individuals. You can learn more about our national sponsors here.


How many students participate?

Each year, more than 250,000 students are exposed to MATHCOUNTS materials and activities in their schools. Approximately 140,000 students from all 50 states, U.S. territories and the State and Defense Department school systems worldwide participate annually in school MATHCOUNTS competitions, with about 40,000 students participating at the chapter competitions. 


What happens if there is a conflict of dates for a competition?

A conflict with a religious observance is the only type of conflict that is accommodated. A student who is unable to attend a competition due to religious observances may take the written portion of the competition up to one week in advance of the scheduled competition. In addition, all competitors from that school must take the exam at the same time. Advance testing will be done at the discretion of the local and state coordinators and under proctored conditions. If the student who is unable to attend the competition due to a religious observance is not part of the school team, then the team has the option of taking the Team Round during this advance testing or on the regularly scheduled day of the competition with the other teams. The coordinator must be made aware of the team’s decision before the advance testing takes place. Students who qualify for an official Countdown Round but are unable to attend will automatically forfeit one place standing. 


When are the competitions?

  • School competitions generally take place in December 2017 or January 2018; the 2018 School Competition test will be available to registered competition coaches by Nov. 1, 2017 through the Competition Coach Section.
  • Chapter competitions will take place in February 2018. Contact your local chapter coordinator for information specific to your chapter competition. Find your Chapter Coordinator here.
  • State Competitions are held in March 2018. Contact your state coordinator for information specific to your state competition. Find your State Coordinator here.
  • The 2018 Raytheon MATHCOUNTS National Competition will take place May 12-15 in Washington, DC.


Who is eligible to compete?

Students enrolled in the sixth, seventh or eighth grade are eligible to participate in the MATHCOUNTS Competition Series. Students taking middle school mathematics classes who are not full‑time sixth, seventh or eighth graders are not eligible. Participation in MATHCOUNTS competitions is limited to three years for each student though there is no limit to the number of years a student may participate in the school‑based coaching phase.

A school may register one team of 4 students and up to 6 individuals for a total of 10 participants. You must designate team members versus individuals prior to the start of the local (chapter) competition (i.e., a student registered as an "individual" may not help his/her school team advance to the next level of competition).

All types of schools - public, private, charter, virtual and homeschools - are eligible to register for the Competition Series. Tutoring/enrichment centers that do not function as students' official school of record are not eligible to register for the Competition Series.

Please refer to the Official Rules + Procedures for the Competition Series, available here and in the 2017-2018 MATHCOUNTS School Handbook here for additional information regarding student eligibility.


What are the levels of competition?

MATHCOUNTS competitions are provided at four levels: school, chapter, state and national. Throughout the school year, coaches work with students using problems from the MATHCOUNTS School Handbook and past competitions. In November, registered Competition Coaches receive access to the School Competition Kit, and hold school competitions in December and January. The school competition can be used to assist a coach in determining which students should represent their school at the chapter competition in February. From there, the top teams and top individuals progress to the state competition in March. The 4 top-scoring individuals and the top team coach advance to the Raytheon MATHCOUNTS National Competition in May. 


What does a competition consist of, exactly?

MATHCOUNTS competitions are designed to be completed in approximately 3 hours. Each competition consists of 4 parts: the Sprint, Target, Team and Countdown Rounds. The Sprint Round has 30 questions, and students have 40 minutes to complete them. The Target Round consists of 8 questions, which are distributed to the students a pair at a time. Students have 6 minutes to complete each pair of problems. The Team Round has 10 problems for the team to work on together for 20 minutes. The top 25% of individuals, up to a maximum of 10, proceed to the Countdown Round, an oral round in which students compete head-to-head.  At chapter or state competitions, a Countdown Round may be conducted officially, unofficially (for fun) or omitted. The Countdown Round is an official part of the National Competition. 


Can a school participate in more than one MATHCOUNTS program?

Yes! Schools are eligible to participate in all three of our programs, and can be registered for all three in one year. Note, the eligibility requirements for the Competition Series are different from those for the National Math Club and the Math Video Challenge, so it is possible that a group (for example, a tutoring center) that is eligible for the National Math Club and the Math Video Challenge is not eligible for the Competition Series.

  • Learn more about the National Math Club here.
  • Learn more about the Math Video Challenge here.


I have registered my school for the competition. How do I submit the names of my students who will be competing?

Participant information can be submitted through your school's listing on your Coach Dashboard.

  • Please click here to download detailed instructions on this process.
  • Please click here to view video instructions on this process.


If you still have any unanswered questions, please contact the MATHCOUNTS national office at or (703) 299-9006.