How to Prepare for the Math Olympiad 2020?

by Gowthamy Alagiri, March 24, 2020

The Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF) conducts the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) with the sole aim to discover raw talents in students of Class I to XII. The advanced set of questions in this national-level competition is quite challenging in terms of intellectuality and reasoning power. The expert students are chosen based on their performance at the national level. Math Olympiad 2020 is a platform where a student can showcase his/her skills in solving mathematical problems. Over 100 countries from 5 continents participate in this international-level competition. Candidates are chosen at the national level first to represent a country. This year, the 61st International Mathematics Olympiad 2020 will be held in St Petersburg, Russia.


Basic information regarding International Math Olympiad 2020


Here is a list of information regarding the IMO 2020 competition. 

  • Eligibility Criteria – Any aspirant from Class 1 to 12 can appear for the respective levels of this competition.

  • The application process is done by the respective school authorities.

  • IMO Exam Level 1 will be held in the months of November and/or December 2020. Level 2 will be held in the months of February and/or March 2021. 

  • Level 1 result is published in the month of December 2020/January 2021.

  • Level 2 results are published in the month of March/April 2021.

Syllabus of International Mathematics Olympiad 2020

As we all know that the IMO 2020 will have two levels of competition. The candidates clearing the first level will proceed to the next.

Here is a gist of the syllabus of IMO 2020 you should follow.

Level 1 

  • The questions will follow an objective-type pattern. For Class I to IV, there will be Math Olympiad questions. For Class V and XII, there will be 50 questions. The time allotted to answer these questions is 60 minutes. 

  • There are four sections in the question paper.

  1. Logical Reasoning

  2. Mathematical Reasoning

  3. Everyday Mathematics

  4. Achievers’ Section

  • Every class will have a separate question paper. The English language is chosen to set the questions.

  • The syllabus of the respective boards such as CBSE, ISC/ICSE, and state boards are followed.

  • Exams at this level will be conducted in the school premises.

Level 2

  • Level 2 will be conducted for aspirants belonging to Class III and above.

  • Only 5% of the top-scoring candidates will be chosen for this level. Marks scored in each section and weight calculation will decide the results.

  • 25 top rankers in a zone will then be selected for this level.

Let us find out the details of the syllabus and marking scheme in a tabular format.

Class

Section

No. of Questions

Marks/ Question

Total Marks

1 to 4

Logical Reasoning

10

1

10

Mathematical Reasoning

10

1

10

Everyday Mathematics

10

1

10

Achievers Section

5

2

10

Grand Total

35

 

40

5 to 12

Logical Reasoning

15

1

15

Mathematical Reasoning

20

1

20

Everyday Mathematics

10

1

10

Achievers Section

5

3

15

Grand Total

50

 

60

IMO SOF 2020 Application Process 

  • Only the schools registered with the authoritative body will get the prospectus along with registration forms.

  • The IMO registration kit will be delivered to you by the school authority.

  • You can also get a prospectus by directly contacting the SOF. 

  • Fill the application form correctly and submit it to the school authority.

  • The rest will be taken care of by the school.

  • The deadline for the IMO application is set 30 days before the scheduled exam date.

How to prepare for Math Olympiad 2020?

Here is the list of tips suggested by our experts to start preparing for the IMO 2020. Follow this list and ensure proper utilization of your time and other resources.

  1. Know your syllabus first

This is the stepping stone for your IMO 2020 preparation. Irrespective of your class and level, you should gather ample knowledge regarding your syllabus and start collecting material. As mentioned earlier, the school syllabus set by the respective board will be followed by the foundation authority to set questions.

  1. Gather study material

Studying your board-prescribed math book will not help you understand the question patterns favored by the authority. It is a talent search competition held on a national level. Hence, you will not encounter conventional-level questions to test your intelligence. For this, you will need books related to SOF IMO, sample questions papers from the previous years, and an online portal to appear for mock IMO exams.

  1. Prepare a routine to follow

IMO is a tough nut. You will have to concentrate more on gaining a deeper knowledge and understanding of the concepts. For this, you will have to dedicate time to learn them, find the question patterns, solve them and build a strong foundation. This is where a routine will be of great help. Experts suggest dividing your day into segments to complete your homework, practice, and prepare for SOF IMO 2020. Do not hamper your conventional studying, rather use your time efficiently to balance the act.

  1. Get deeper into the concepts

You will have to find deeper insights into the concepts delivered in the chapters of your Mathematics book prescribed by the board. You can also seek suggestions from your teachers, parents, and mentors to avail of books related to SOF IMO 2020.

  1. Practice and practice again

The ideal way to master a new concept deeply is to practice. Expose yourself to critical thinking by solving sample Math Olympiad questions set by our experts so that you can test your present level. In this way, you can challenge your intellect and become better every day. You can download sample IMO questions papers online or appear for a mock test once you are done with your syllabus.

  1. Take help from the internet

You can find excellent help from the tutorial sites catering to such needs. IMO tutorials can be of great help. If you can follow the special techniques to approach a particular set of problems taught by the experts online, you can easily ace the competition. In a nutshell, you will have to follow expert guidance provided by your teachers, tutors, and mentors to become more competitive.

  1. Track your progress

The best way to track down your progress is to check how many questions you can attempt and answer correctly within the stipulated time. In this way, you will get a report to follow and make yourself better. In fact, you will also find the weak sections and work on them too.


Every competitive exam needs a brilliant set of study materials to follow. You will also have to gather information regarding the question pattern and get accustomed to the MCQ-type answering system. There is no reason to worry or feel anxious. Good practice and motivation along with the best online study material will escalate your level of concentration and confidence. Prepare well for the Math Olympiad 2020 and score well. 


How to Prepare for the Math Olympiad 2020?