2014 Stanford Math Tournament

by Eric Xu, Class of 2015, South High School

On the chilly Saturday morning of February 15th, over 600 students from around the world gathered in front of Building 380, eager to tackle the 2014 Stanford Math Tournament. After checking in, more than 50 teams dispersed into various rooms across the huge campus to take their individual tests.

In the individual rounds, students chose to take two of the four available subject tests: Advanced Topics, Algebra, Calculus, and Geometry. Each test lasted for fifty minutes and contained 10 short answer problems ordered in increasing difficulty. However, some less experienced students opted to take the General Test – a 110 minute test with twenty-five short answer questions.

Following the challenging individual tests was a thirty minute break, in which participants regrouped with their teams and animatedly began discussing their answers and solutions to the problems. By 11:30 AM, the teams began the Power Round. Students had ninety minutes to work with their team members to solve difficult proof-based problems centered on a particular theme; this year's was the Thue-Morse Code and its many intricate properties and applications.

Click here to see the full gallery.

After the grueling Power Round, the teams headed outside for a restful lunch, sharing stacks of  pizza or even running off to buy Panda Express. Relaxing in front of the Math Building, several students enjoyed games of Frisbee or cards. Soon after, the teams went back into the assigned rooms to take the Team Round. This time, the teams were faced with fifteen short answer questions to be answered in fifty minutes.

The last test of the day was the Tiebreaker Round, which ranked the top scorers in each individual test by having each tied student solve three difficult problems. Students not participating in this round attended a talk by Professor Luca Trevisan, who gave a presentation on Quantum Computing.

Finally, at around 5:30 AM, everyone filed into the Hewlett Teaching Center, anxiously awaiting the final results. OCMC A, consisting of Victor Chen, Eric Xu, Michelle Chen, Calvin Qi, Benjamin Chen, Sam Reinehr, Kevin Zhang, and Larry Zhang, finished with an impressive third place for overall Team, and team members Sam Reinehr and Kevin Zhang tied for fifth and fourth in the Advanced Topics and Geometry rounds respectively. Congratulations to all participants for their remarkable achievements!

This site is maintained by Kasra Lekan. 


STEAM for All