The Mathematical Olympiad Programme (MOP) in India, which leads to participation of Indian students in the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO), is organized by the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE) in collaboration with the National Board for Higher Mathematics (NBHM) of the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India. The first stage (PRMO) of the Olympiad examination is conducted by MTA (Mathematics Teachers’ Association) with assistance from IAPT, while the later stages are the responsibility of HBCSE. This programme is one of the major initiatives undertaken by the NBHM.
Aim of Mathematical Olympiads:
- To stimulate love and enthusiasm for mathematics
- To provide a healthy competitive activity that facilitates the learning of mathematical concepts, and the teaching of major strategies for problem solving
- To foster mathematical creativity and ingenuity, and the thrill of meeting challenges
- To spot mathematical talent among pre-university students in the country
The Six Stages of Mathematical Olympiad programme
In order to select the students for International Olympiads, the country has been divided into regions with a regional coordinator responsible for each region (details of which are available on the HBCSE website). The Mathematical Olympiad programme consists of the following six stages:
Other Important Mathematical Olympiads
European Girls Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO):
The EGMO, which started in 2012, is a platform which promotes a career in Mathematics amongst girl students by challenging the brightest four pre-university girl students from each participating country. The EGMO is a two-day event with two written tests held on two consecutive days. Each test consists of three problems and the contest lasts for four and half hours on each day. India has been participating in the EGMO since 2015 and the selection process for EGMO is conjoined with that for the IMO (The International Mathematical Olympiad).
Asia Pacific Mathematics Olympiad (APMO):
The APMO, which started in 1989, is a contest specifically held for students in Asian countries and the countries in the rim of Pacific Ocean. A student can participate in APMO being in his/her own country. India has been participating in the APMO since 2015. The APMO is a one-day event consisting of 5 problems to be solved in four hours. The other rules and regulations for participating in APMO are much like the IMO.
The Six Stages
Stage 1: Pre Regional Mathematical Olympiad (PRMO)
- PMRO is the first stage for IMO organized by MTA with assistance from IAPT
- Test paper contains 30 Questions
- Test Duration is 3Hrs.
- List of top 300 students who will be eligible for RMO from each region is declared by mid-September
- Eligibility: Not older than 19 years of age as on 1st August and, in addition, studying in Class VIII, IX, X, XI or XII
- Details of examination fee and other relevant details available on the IAPT Website:http://iapt.org.in/ or HBCSE Website:https://olympiads.hbcse.tifr.res.in/
Stage 2: Regional Mathematical Olympiad (RMO)
- Three hours written test with six problems
- Conducted by Regional Coordinators under the guidance of HBCSE
- Top 30 students from class VIII, IX, X, XI and top 6 students from class XII + next 5 girl students are sent by each regional coordinator to HBCSE
- Results of all the RMOs are declared centrally by the HBCSE
- Eligibility: Students who qualify PRMO
Stage 3: Indian National Mathematical Olympiad (INMO)
- Usually held on the third Sunday of January
- Four Hours Written Test
- Top 30 Students from the country are chosen in order of merit
- In addition to the top 30, up to 5 girl students are chosen based on their performance in INMO for participation in EGMO
- Eligibility: Students who are selected in RMO in the previous year and those holding an INMO Certificate of Merit
Stage 4: International Mathematical Olympiad Training Camp (IMOTC)
- Month long training camp in April-May at the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE), Mumbai for INMO Awardees and the girls selected for EGMO
- INMO Awardees of previous years eligible for IMO and EGMO are also invited, provided they have satisfactorily gone through postal tuition throughout the year
- On the basis of a number of selection tests through the Camp, a team of the best 6 students is selected from the combined pool of junior and senior batch participants
- The junior students receive INMO certificate and a prize in the form of books and the senior students receive a prize in the form of books and cash
Stage 5: Pre-departure Training Camp for IMO
It’s the final round of training and orientation for the selected 6 students for eight to ten days at HBCSE prior to departure for IMO and EGMO.
Stage 6: International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO)
- The 6-member team selected at the end of IMOTC accompanied by a leader, a deputy leader and an observer represent the country at the IMO, held in July each year in a different member country of the IMO
- Two written tests held on two consecutive days
- Each test consists of three problems
- Test Duration is 4.5 Hrs.
- Selection of team members for IMO will be subject to their fulfilling criteria such as age limit, medical fitness, parental consent and others as specified by the council
- Each selected student needs to have a valid Indian passport meeting the visa regulations of the host country
The syllabus is spread over Class XI to Class XII levels, but the problems under each topic involve high level of difficulty and sophistication. The difficulty level increases from RMO to INMO to IMO and the Previous years’ Question papers available on the HBCSE website can provide a good idea of the types of question one can expect.
- Topics include:
- Pre-degree college mathematics – arithmetic of integers, geometry, quadratic equations and expressions, trigonometry, co-ordinate geometry, system of linear equations, permutations and combination, factorisation of polynomial, inequalities, elementary combinatorics, probability theory and number theory, finite series and complex numbers and elementary graph theory
- Algebra, combinatorics, geometry and number theory
- The syllabus does not include calculus and statistics.
The INMO awardees who successfully complete IMO Training Camp and who pursue B.Sc., or other courses as per the guidelines of the Board with mathematics as one of the principal subjects of study, are eligible to receive a scholarship of National Board of Higher Mathematics, which is at present Rs. 4,000 per month through the period of their undergraduate studies (subject to satisfactory progress). Enhance scholarship would be available for pursuing Masters Studies in Mathematics.
Now that the 2nd stage of Mathematical Olympiad – RMO is just around the corner, all the PRMO qualified candidates should gear up for 6th October, 2019 (Sunday) and put their best foot forward in the direction of excelling in this stage as well.
Author: Kama Choudhary
Kama is an avid reader, an experienced content writer, a published academic author and an educator with experience in teaching Senior Secondary Classes. From conducting thorough research on industry-related topics to preparing well-structured drafts, Kama has been creating compelling content for the blog. In addition, she provides content for various marketing campaigns, writes press releases and develops and edits content for our web pages. She provides succinct content for our various advertisements and writes clear marketing copy to promote our products and services.