The School of Mathematics and Statistics Research Competition provides high-school students with the opportunity to understand what it means to conduct mathematics and solve mathematical problems.
The students will be given a set of eight open-ended questions from which they choose one. They can then use some of the methods used by mathematical researchers to investigate their problem; they can gather data, simplify, visualise, hypothesise, conjecture and prove. The aim of the competition is to allow students to use their creativity and problem-solving skills to make choices about how best to ask and answer questions about their chosen project. Students can compete individually, or they can compete as a team in order to foster a positive environment, giving them the opportunity to reason and work collaboratively.
Students must be currently enrolled in a Victorian government or non-government school. The competition is open to two age groups: Intermediate (Years 7 - 9) and Senior (Years 10 - 12).
Students may compete individually or in a team of up to three people. If a team includes students from different age groups, then they must register in the age category of the oldest student. Schools may enter multiple teams, and students may participate in more than one team.
The competition questions have been devised to be accessible by students in Years 7 to 12, however, students in year 5 or 6 who are undertaking accelerated programs at school may also enter.
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Each team selects one of the eight research questions to work on. Once they have finished their research, they must present their findings.
They may do this by either:
- Writing a formal report, or
- Creating a visual display
All work must be the sole product of the registering team.
Students have until 27 July 2020 to complete their research and submit their completed project to firstname.lastname@example.org. The eight winning teams will be contacted in the week commencing 28 August.
The eight finalists (four from each age grouping) will be invited to the University of Melbourne in October (date still to be determined) to give a presentation of their project. Each team will be allocated an area in which to set up a visual presentation of their project. Students may use technology in their presentations if they wish. Guests and a panel of judges will move around and view the projects. The students will be expected to be able to explain their research and findings to the judges and guests and to answer any questions. Students competing in teams can elect to have multiple speakers or just choose one speaker. At the end of the presentation time, the top research project will be selected for each age group.
There are eight prizes. The top research project in each age category receives $1500 and the three runners up in each age category receive $600. All teams will receive a travel bursary to enable them to travel to the finals presentation. This will be capped at $1000. All teams who successfully submit a completed research project will receive a certificate for participation.
The criteria for judging will vary depending on the age category and the complexity of the research project. However, whenever explicit mathematics is involved, mathematical accuracy is vitally important, as is the correct use of mathematical language.
In addition to these, the judging criteria includes elements for originality, creativity, communication and presentation.
For further information please contact email@example.com.
To register for the competition, schools must complete this registration form. [pdf, 0.139MB]
Once a school has registered, they will receive further information and a booklet containing the 2020 research projects. There is no cost for entering the competition. Enquiries can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
The deadline for completed research projects is Mon 27 July.