Tournaments: Distinctions

HMMT is committed to providing opportunities to mathematically gifted students looking for a challenging and unique experience. Through our tournaments, we hope to expose contestants to problems that are both interesting and fun to work on even after the test is over. We also hope that our tournaments will allow students to meet others interested in math from around the country and the world. While both tournaments are challenging and prestigious, their differences must be noted:

HMMT February is arguably one of the most difficult math competitions in the United States. Students who find success on these contests are usually those who can comfortably and confidently solve at least 6 to 8 problems correctly on the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME). Few if any will be able to do all 10 problems on a Subject Test in the time allotted; in fact, there have been years when the top scores have been less than a 50%. Additionally, the HMMT February Team Round requires the ability to write mathematical proofs.

HMMT November provides a more approachable alternative to HMMT February. Students with experience with math tournaments, such as those who have performed well on the AMC exams, will likely find HMMT November to be a challenging yet fun experience. All problems in this contest are short-answer, and require no proofs.

To get a better idea of the relative difficulty of our tournaments, we encourage students to take some of the tests from the past few years. The HMMT November tests can be found here, and the HMMT February tests here.

In the case that one or two members of a high school math club may prefer the difficulty of HMMT February, yet not eight members do, we would suggest that strongest students compete with regional teams instead of high school teams while the other students compete with their school at HMMT November.

If you are looking for, but are unable to find, a regional team, HMMT is willing to help connect students. Please fill out the individual registration form found here.

We urge all students and coaches to carefully consider which tournament is the more appropriate competition for them. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at hmmt-request@mit.edu.

Proceed to the November website. | Proceed to the February website.

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