Students participate in AMC Math Contest

Recently high school math students were given a challenge that many chose to take on and conquer: the AMC Math Contest.

The math contest takes place every year, and is always available for students to participate in, if they are willing to take the test itself and pay a small fee. This year the math contest had more success with students, as more people participated in the contest than usual.


According to math teacher Gregory Christy, the contest actually has many more benefits than it may initially appear.

“The math contest goes over material that otherwise would not be talked about in school,” Christy said, “it allows teachers and students to discuss different, higher level math topics that would otherwise not even be mentioned in the normal classes here at Northview.”

So while gaining experience with different types of math that would otherwise not be discussed, students also get the chance to see what is ahead of them math wise, since students of any high school grade are able to participate in the contest.

“Sometimes, the lower level students will take the test, which has math ranging from Algebra I to Calculus on it, and teachers will be able to discuss things with freshmen that they won’t see for a couple of years. I’ve heard of freshmen students asking teachers about math we don’t cover until Calculus here, which is really good for the students to be exposed to,” Christy said.

The way the scoring for the test works is different then most other tests similar to it as well. It actually can benefit a person to not answer the question if they really don’t know the answer.

The scoring goes by points, and whichever students have the most points can possibly continue on to the next level of testing for the contest. A student gets one point for getting a correct answer, zero points for getting a wrong answer, and a half a point for not answering at all.

With this method of scoring, it almost encourages students to not answer things that they don’t know or aren’t sure of, unlike most AP tests or regular tests where it is better to at least guess and hope for the right answer, since answering incorrectly doesn’t really hurt or help a student.

The contest is only 25 questions long, with 75 minutes to take the whole test. While the question amount may not seem very large, it is the difficulty of the questions that increases the challenge.

The questions on the test are often more complex than regular math test questions, with multiple steps or critical thinking involved, which sets those who do well on the test apart from typical math students.

The Math contest took place on two dates this year, the A test on February 3 and the B test on February 25.

If students do well on the test, A or B, they can move onto a higher level test.

Once students complete the different levels of the test, and do well on each level, there is a possibility of winning scholarship money. These scholarships can range from $250 to $25000, so there is a money-based encouragement to taking the test as well.

Staff Writer, Emily Stephens