Contest Rules

The Math Invitational

The major events of the Math Invitational consist of the Individual Round, Team Round, and the Oral Proof. General information and details about them are below. In addition to the Rounds and OP, MIG holds an essay contest of which's winners are to be announced at the Math Invitational's Award Ceremony. See more information about essay submissions under Contests in the menu above.

Between the Rounds and the Ceremony, there will also be an Intermission. Optional (but recommended!) math games will be around for students to play, with special note to a mini-Math Bowl tournament. Students may participate in the Math Bowl casually to win a fun prize.

Individual Round

The Individual Round is a 40 minute round consisting of 25 multiple-choice problems, no calculators allowed. The problems are of approximately the same difficulty as those of the AMC 8 (American Mathematics Competition) and will be graded in the same manner as in the AMC 8, 1 point for each correct answer and 0 points for incorrect answers. There is no guessing penalty. Students must work by themselves for the entirety of the round.

Team Round

The Team Round is a 20 minute round consisting of 10 questions, calculators allowed. Teachers must register teams of 3 to 4 individuals (including team names, if the students want to get creative) and include the names of the individuals in the teams. Students work in these pre-made teams for the entirety of the round. Individuals who registered without a school/team have the option to sit this round out or work with other solo individuals (recommended). If there are no such others, they can also work by themselves.

The Team Round is modeled after the Mathcounts Team Round, and problems should be of approximately the same difficulty as those of the Chapter Mathcounts. The team may converse with each other only. The scoring format is 1 point for each correct answer and 0 points for incorrect answers. There is no guessing penalty.

Oral Proof

The top 6 scoring individuals are paired to compete in the Oral Proof Round. Each pair is given 15 minutes to derive a proof with their partner of a given problem. The pairs will then present their problems to a panel of judges and an audience of fellow competitors and parents, who are welcome to come. Of course, there is no single correct proof, nor are perfect proofs expected given the time constraints. Participants will be judged based on correctness, rigor, creativity, clarity, and effectiveness of communication for their total score. Judges consist of esteemed math professionals. 

With the Oral Proof, we wish to emphasize the importance of being able to not only solve problems but also to present their work effectively. Note that winning does not affect the original standings of the top 6 scorers as it is a separate award.

General Guidelines

The Individual Round and Team Round will take place in separate areas and given instructions by proctors. If you find there is a problem, such as being placed in the incorrect room (students should be in the same rooms as their teams, for instance), there is staff available to assist everywhere. No phones or inappropriate calculators are to be used during testing. Specific locations within the University of Memphis will be announced upon arrival. 

The Essay Contest

Students are invited to write a short essay to submit before the Invitational. Prompts vary year to year. Check out this year's at the bottom of this page: Contest Information

Students only need to choose one of the given topics to write about for their short essay. The essay should be typed in 12-pt. legible font, double-spaced, and emailed to There is no word limit, but essays tend to be 1-2 pages long.