A typical Math Quest competition is held over 3 days and includes a range of different challenges. Teams are made up of 4 students (students must be under 12 years old at the time of the competition). The order that these challenges occur varies from year to year but below is the typical structure.

Day 1

Math Trail

All teams are taken to a location either in the host town or a local museum. Students have to complete a series of questions (usually 11)  in this location (22 points available). Often after the Math Trail all students do a tour of the city.



Day 2

Individual Challenge

Student work independently to complete 4 rounds of 8 questions (worth 1 point each). The students in a team work on a different round at the same time. Each round lasts for 16 minutes (128 points available).


Team Challenge

Each team works together on a set of 5 questions (worth 2 points each). There are 4 rounds and there are 16 minutes per round (40 points available).


Practical Challenge

Each team works together on 3 problems (worth 10 points each). Each team has 20 minutes to solve each problem (30 points available).

Day 3 – often half a day


Each team works together on 3 problems. Each problem is timed (maximum 20 minutes). When they complete a problem their elapsed time is recorded. If they get the answer correct they receive a score based on how long it took to complete the problem. Often the score is broken down as follows 5 minutes = 10 points, 10 minutes = 7 points, 15 minutes = 5 points, 20 minutes = 3 points. (30 points available).

Construction Challenge

For this challenge teams are mixed. Each team is made up of 4 students from different schools. The new teams are provided materials and have to construct a specified thing (in Oslo it was a ski jump where you had to jump a marble off, etc). There is 60 minutes to complete the task. This challenge is judged on the criteria set by the host school (height, strength, distance, teamwork, etc). There are no points available for this but a prize is given to the “best” construction.