Rising to the Intermediate Maths Challenge

Rising to the Intermediate Maths Challenge

QE has continued its record of ever-improving performance in the Intermediate Maths Challenge, as the number of boys going through tops 170.

After sitting the Intermediate Maths Challenge (IMC), which is run by the UK Mathematics Trust, 30 boys from Years 9–11 join a national élite of young mathematicians going on to participate in the Intermediate Maths Olympiad – up from 27 boys last year and 19 the year before. Across the whole country, only around 500 high-scorers in each year group are invited to join the Olympiad.

A further 143 QE boys have qualified for the challenge’s other follow-on round, the Intermediate European Kangaroo. With 140 qualifying last year and 133 in 2017, this reflects another rising trend. Nationally, a total of 5,500 pupils across all three year groups are invited to sit the Kangaroo test papers.

Assistant Head of Mathematics Wendy Fung said: “We are delighted with how well the boys have done and extremely pleased with the continued increase in the proportion of them reaching the follow-on rounds. As the new 9-1 GCSE has a strong focus on problem-solving, success in the IMC will stand the boys in good stead for the new-style exams.”

A total of 319 boys at the School took part in this year’s IMC. Of these, 172 were awarded gold certificates, 91 took silver and 39 bronze. The top 40 per cent of students nationally receive a gold, silver or bronze certificate in the ratio 1:2:3.

Each school or college also receives a Best in School certificate. James Tan, of Year 11, was this year’s winner, with a score of 127 out of 135. He said that he had particularly relished the geometry questions. Next in Year 11 was Gurman Saini, with 122: “I enjoyed getting my head around the riddles,” he said. He was closely followed by Hari Gajendran, on 121.

The Best in Year 10 accolade went to Dan Suciu, with 125, followed by Abhinav Santhiramohan, with 115. Best in Year 9 was Ansh Jassra, scoring 119 – “I like the blend of complex, challenging Maths and fun, creative problem-solving,” he said – and second place went to Arnie Sahi, on 116.

The names of the Intermediate Mathematical Olympiad papers are: Cayley, Hamilton and Maclaurin for Years 9, 10 and 11 respectively. The Kangaroo papers, which are sat by pupils from more than 30 countries, last one hour and feature 25 multiple-choice questions.

  • Here is one of the questions from this year’s IMC:

A 24-hour digital clock shows the time in hours and minutes. How many times in one day will it display all four digits 2, 0, 1 and 9 in some order?
A 6
B 10
C 12
D 18
E 24