Junior Mathematics

Welcome to the Junior Mathematics Competition!

This year the competition will be held in two parts - the first being a multiple-choice and short answer exam sat entirely online, while the second part will be a paper exam limited to the top 15 percent of participants in the first part.

The first part of the competition will be sat from Monday April 8 to Friday April 12, while the second part will be held on Wednesday May 15.

2024 is the 39th year of this highly successful Competition.

This mathematics competition is for students in years 9 to 11 (forms 3 to 5), although younger students may also take part. Every student throughout New Zealand sits the competition on exactly the same days, usually two Wednesdays in April in May (one for each part).

The competition lasts for 50 minutes per part (so one hour, 40 minutes in total). The emphasis is on problem solving, so expect surprises!

Mathematical skills are important, but so is careful reading. Students who read the questions carefully and work out exactly what is being asked generally do better than those who jump in and write down the first thing that springs to mind.

Although many of the same questions are asked for each year level, students only compete against students at the same level as themselves. (However students in years 7 or 8 are regarded as being in year 9 for the purposes of the competition.)

Full details of the competition may be found here, with a note on who can enter here.

Note: This competition should not be confused with Problem Challenge, which is run by a separate unit within the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Otago. For Problem Challenge enquires please contact the Problem Challenge organisers directly.


Wednesday May 8 2024 Schools with students invited to the second part of the competition have now been emailed with the questions and other materials. If you are expecting such an email and have not received it by the end of the day please get in touch with us.
Tuesday April 9 2024 Currently there is a small error in the last Part One question Year 11 students see: the answer box is labelled "area" but should be labelled "radius". We will fix this in due course. Our apologies. (Update: this has been fixed.)
Friday April 5 2024 Our apologies, but due to logistical issues we will only consider new entries from schools that have not entered the competition since 2020 on a case by case basis. Schools who have entered the competition from 2020 on and schools who have contacted us about entering this year still have until 12pm on Monday to enter. Existing entries are unaffected. Please contact us for more information about this.
Monday March 25 2024 Schools that have registered for the 2024 competition may now access an online sample test, which will give your students a chance to experience the test environment. Schools can log into our website for further information about this test.
Monday January 15 2024 Early bird registrations are now possible (for those schools who already have logins). Please let us know if you encounter any difficulties with registration.
Thursday December 14 2023 It is no longer possible to purchase books from our website. If you placed an order prior to today it will still be processed and sent out.
Wednesday November 22 2023 We are pleased to announce that we will be running the Junior Mathematics Competition in 2024. The dates for next year are on our dates page.
Monday November 20 2023 After the 13th of December it will no longer be possible to buy books from our website. If you want to buy a book from us please do so before then.
Tuesday August 15 2023 Full results have been sent to schools today (our apologies for the slight delay). If your school hasn't received your results please let us know.
Tuesday August 8 2023 Top 30 results have been released to schools for checking. We hope to release full results on Monday next week.
Wednesday March 29 2023 Sample questions for the first part of the competition have now been put into PDF documents. Head to the Details page to download these. (Answers for the questions have yet to be prepared.)
Monday March 27 2023 We have now closed registering for this year's competition. Schools that have already registered may still add, remove, or change their existing timeslots.
Tuesday March 21 2023 Given the possibility of a strike next Wednesday, if your school is planning on sitting on that date can you please let us know if you would like alternative time slots if the strike proceeds. We will probably offer the first part of the competition to entered schools next week as well if the need arises.
Tuesday March 21 2023 Similar to the Wednesday 8:30am slot, the Tuesday 8:30am slot can no longer be selected by schools who have yet to register for the competition. If you do need to place a group of students into the Tuesday 8:30am slot, please use another slot for that group (preferably at a 'quiet' time) and then email us explaining your situation.
Friday March 10 2023 Due to overwhelming demand for the Wednesday 8:30am slot, this slot can no longer be selected by schools who have yet to register for the competition. Schools who move one of their groups away from this slot will not be able to move back to it again (if they confirm their changes on the registration page). If you do need to place a group of students into the Wednesday 8:30am slot, please use another slot for that group (preferably at a 'quiet' time) and then email us explaining your situation.
Monday March 6 2023 A sample test is now available at the sample test page. Note that only students from registered schools have access to the test. We will remove availability to the test on Friday, the 24th of March. Registered schools can log into our website to view the necessary credentials to sit the test.
Monday February 13 2023 Invitation letters have been sent out to all schools who entered last year. If your school did not enter last year and you would like us to send out the invitation letter please contact us.
Wednesday February 1 2023 Schools may now register for this year's competition by logging in and clicking the "Register for 2023" button at the top right of the page.
Monday September 19 2022 We put this information in the competition report, but here it is for those who asked: the dates for next year's competition are as follows: Part One begins the week of Monday, the 27th of March, while Part Two is on Wednesday, the 3rd of May.
Tuesday July 26 2022 Top 30 results are now available on the Results page. This year's questions and model solutions are also available on the Previous questions page. Schools can log into our website and download their certificates, although since we do not have the full final results available just yet we recommend you hold off on printing these until you receive a results email.
Tuesday July 19 2022 We hope to have final results out sometime next week. Schools will be emailed with their results when they become available.
Tuesday May 3 2022 We will be emailing schools tomorrow with the materials needed to sit the second part of the competition. We have started the process of invoicing schools that wish to be invoiced. Please note that if you have opted to pay via credit card you must do so by the end of Monday May 9 or you will be invoiced instead.
Monday April 11 2022You may now download your results from the dashboard to see which of your students have qualified for part two (if applicable). Schools wishing to pay via credit card may now do so - please verify the number of students we have and the amount you will be charged before paying, and please contact us if you think either is incorrect.
Monday April 4 2022Regular entries have now closed for this year's competition. Changes to your entry must now be done via email. If you missed the deadline but still wish to enter, a few slots remain available - please contact us for details (late entries will only be accepted on a case by case basis).
Sunday April 3 2022A reminder that entries close at 12pm on Monday. If you miss this deadline and still wish to enter, we may be able to accommodate you, but only in an empty time slot. Please contact us for details.
Monday March 14 2022We now have a poster schools can use to advertise this year's competition to their students.
Thursday September 23 2021 Sorry to disappoint schools waiting for physical prize packs, but it looks like we won't be able to send them out until Monday next week.
Friday September 17 2021Final results have now been emailed to all schools. We will send out physical prize packs to schools starting next week. Update: in a few cases certificates may be incorrect. We have fixed the issue. If your certificates are incorrect you can login to our website and click "Download your certificates" to the right of your school information.
Thursday September 16 2021We haven't quite got everything in order to send out results to all schools automatically. Schools that have previously emailed us about results will get emails today with their results. We hope to send out all results tomorrow afternoon, but if you'd like to get your results sooner than that please contact us. Note: the Top 30 results for each year level have been announced on the results page.
Tuesday September 14 2021Results will be released to schools this coming Thursday. Once again, our apologies for the delay.
Tuesday August 17 2021Due to circumstances beyond our control we do not have any final results for you just yet. We apologize for the inconvenience this will cause some schools. Schools that participated in only the first part of the competition may download their certificates by logging into the website and visiting their competition day dashboard. When we have more positive news regarding final results we will post an update on this website and contact schools via email. Note that for technical reasons results will not be emailed out this year - schools will have to login to download results and certificates.
Monday April 19 2021Schools may now find out which of their students will be invited to attempt the second part of the competition by score alone by logging in and visiting their dashboard. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list by any means, and other students will be invited to participate. Full lists of who will be invited to participate in the second part will be emailed to schools at the end of the first week of Term 2.
Friday March 19 2021We will now allow schools to finish the first part of the competition at 4.30pm (so tests can start no later than 3.30pm). As such, the final period of time that participants can sit the first part of the competition is 7am to 4.30pm on MULTI_DATE (and the same periods of time for the next two days).
Friday February 26 2021We now have a poster schools can use to advertise this year's competition to their students.
Friday February 26 2021We've now extended the start and end times for the first part of the competition. Students may sit the competition from 7am on MULTI_DATE, and students have until 3.15pm to start sitting the competition (for a 4.15pm finish, although we recommend finishing by 4pm).
Friday August 7 2020 Next year's competition will have a different format. It will be held in two stages in April and May. The first stage will be online, and the second stage will have the same structure as this year's competition, but will only be open to the top 15% of competitors of the first stage. More details are in this year's school report, which you may download on the results page.
Tuesday June 9 2020 It is now too late to submit papers to us for marking, even if you sat the competition on the 13th of May. (Physical papers still en route posted in May will still be marked.) This year's questions are now available here.
Friday November 29 2019 As of today the "introductory" price of $25 per copy for "We Have a Problem" has expired. The regular price of $30 now applies. Orders already made at $25 before today that have yet to be shipped are unaffected. Please note that stock has temporarily been exhausted so there will be a slight delay in shipping before more stock arrives.
Monday October 14 2019 Final results have been sent to all schools.
Wednesday September 4 2019 The Top 30 results for Years 9 and 10 are now available on the Results page.
Monday September 2 2019 The Top 30 results for Year 11 have been released - please visit the Results page. We hope to release the Year 9 and Year 10 Top 30 results in the coming days, and the full list of results should go out to schools by Sunday evening. At this stage we plan to send out the certificates to schools at the start of Term 4.
Friday March 29 2019: New entries for the 2019 competition have now closed. Schools which have already entered may still change the number of digital entries by emailing the manager at jmc@maths.otago.ac.nz.
Monday March 25 2019: If a teacher now logs in they should be able to download useful items. These include the Instructions for sitting, a photocopiable copy of the Answer Booklet or, if preferred, a sheet with headers which can be attached to any student's answers if they are going to answer on pad paper.
Thursday March 21 2019: The PPTA have postponed their Day of Action. Please see the notice at the top of the page.
Monday March 11 2019: Printed entries have closed. If your school still wants to enter students then digital entries are still available.
Thursday February 28 2019: During the upcoming weekend we will be sending a reminder message about the competition to all schools which have entered at any point since 2014. If for some reason you do not receive the reminder but still wish to enter you may still do so. Contact us if you have difficuties. You may download your customised invitation letter if you log into the website. The results for 2018 are also on the website. (Each school can only download their own results.)
Thursday February 7 2019: Schools may now login on the website if they have a record of their user name and password from 2018. The Initial Invitation for 2019 (which contains a school's login details anyway) will be sent to all New Zealand schools shortly.
Sunday August 5 2018: The Top 30 results for Year 9 have been put on the results page. We hope to release the Top 30 results for the other two year levels next weekend, at which point preliminary results will be sent to schools to allow checking of names for certificates.
Monday April 9, 2018: We have now sold out our stock of the "Ten of the Best" book. Since we are planning a new book that will release in the second half of this year, there will be no further reprints.
Monday March 26, 2018: We believe that we have sent competition material to all schools which entered this year's competition up to and including this date. All school mathematical contacts who believe their school has not received the materials should contact the organisers urgently.
Tuesday March 6, 2018: Due to a bug in our code, attempts to upload names via our website from before this morning may not have worked. If you attempted to upload names before now, please try again. Our apologies for the inconvenience.
Monday March 5, 2018: Everyone can now upload their names via our website after logging in. This is not mandatory but it is recommended that you try and supply names in this way.
Friday March 2, 2018: The University's Credit Card gateway will be down for maintenance on Sunday the 4rd of March between 9am and 11am. We recommend that you should not place entries in the competition nor order books via our website during this time. For further information please visit this page.
Monday February 26, 2018: We're nearly ready for schools to upload names via our website. If you'd like to try it out before we make it widely available, please contact us.
Tuesday September 26, 2017: Due to a bug while testing our email system, a few schools were accidentally emailed with another invitation to enter this year's competition (which, of course, has already been and gone). Our apologies for those affected; the email can be safely ignored.
Thursday September 4, 2017: We have now sent final results via email to all schools. Printed certificates and prizes (where relevant) should be couriered out by next week at the latest.
The 2017 questions and model solutions are now available on the Previous Questions page, while the 2017 report is available on the Results page.
Thursday July 6, 2017: Principal marking has been completed, and a second round of marking checking the top 15 to 20 percent of papers is under way. Note that this year’s competition was easy compared to previous years, so it may take a little longer to sort out the top papers than usual. We still hope to result preliminary results in August.
Monday May 8, 2017: Marking continues. The general feeling is the competition is quite easy this year. While you wait for results (a wee way off yet), feel free to read about the organisers here.
Monday January 30, 2017:An electronic calendar (in iCal format) containing key dates for this year’s competition is now available here.
Wednesday August 17, 2016:The solutions for this year’s competition are now available. This year’s report is also available.
Monday July 25, 2016:Principal marking has now been completed. Check marking continues; we hope to have the Top 30 results for Year 9 ready this coming weekend!
Monday June 13, 2016:We’ve added an interactive map to the website, detailing the schools that entered this year, and in previous years (the earliest currently available is 2010). Visit our map page and start exploring!
Monday May 30, 2016:This year’s questions are now available here. We hope to put the answers up soon.