Tournament Rules

General | Registration | Testing | Awards | Calculators | Grading

General Information


Three individual tests (Algebra, Geometry, and Combinatorics) and two team events (the Team Round and the Guts Round) will comprise the major events of the Tournament.

Additionally, the Friday night preceding the Tournament, we will hold several more social events for competitors. These include dinner, an ice cream social, and our traditional Mini-Events. Check back to our site closer to the competition date for more details!

Newly for the 2013 contest, we are eliminating the B Team round--this means that each team will take the same, largely proof-based test. To account for this change, we will make a concerted effort to make several of the problems in this round more approachable than in previous years. Additionally, teams who prefer a short answer-based test to a proof-based one may prefer HMMT November's Team Round to HMMT February's.


Each school may attempt to register up to 3 teams; a team comprises up to eight individuals. A team must also have a minimum of 6 individuals. We may not be able to allow all teams to attend; see our registration policy for details. The event is intended for high school students, but any student not yet in high school who wishes to compete is welcome to come. A coach may bring teams that include students from multiple schools or homeschooled students.

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Testing Information

Individual Tests | Guts Round | Team Round

Individual Tests

All individuals will take the same three Subject Tests: Algebra, Geometry, and Combinatorics. Each test will have 10 short-answer problems and a 50-minute time limit.

Guts Round

The Guts Round is an 80-minute team event with 36 short-answer questions on an assortment of subjects, of varying difficulty and point values. Each team is seated in a predetermined spot, and the questions are divided into groups of four. At the starting signal, each team sends a runner to an assigned problem station to pick up copies of the first set of four problems for each team member. As soon as a team has answers for one problem set, the runner may bring the answers to the problem station and pick up the next set. It is not expected that students will finish all the problems. Grading is immediate and scores are posted in real time. The Guts round is worth a total of approximately 400 points.

Team Round

The Team Round is a 60-minute collaborative event with proof-style problems, which may come from any area of elementary mathematics. Thorough justifications are required for full credit. The Team Round is worth a total of 400 points; problems are weighted according to difficulty. This round will require teams to be comfortable with rigorous mathematical proofs.

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Prizes will be given to the ten highest-scoring individuals overall, the top ten scorers on each of the subject rounds, the five highest-scoring teams on the Team Round, and the five highest-scoring teams on the Guts Round. The top ten teams overall will be named the Sweepstakes winners. The calculation of Sweepstakes scores will be roughly half individual round performance and half cooperative round performance.

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Calculators and Other Computational Aids

You may not use books, notes, calculators, pocket organizers, slide-rules, abaci, or any other computational aids. Similarly you may not use graph paper, rulers, protractors, compasses, architectural tools, or any other drawing aids. In addition, communication devices such as laptops, PDAs, and cell phones are prohibited.

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Grading Requirements


An overview of the new scoring guidelines can be found in this PDF. A more technical explanation can be found in this PDF.


Complete description of acceptable answers can be found in this PDF.


If a student believes that an answer given on the answer key is incorrect, he must go to the designated Appeals Room and submit an appeal in writing. The deadline to do so will be announced on the day of the contest.

Decisions of the coordinators of the Harvard-MIT Math Tournament are final.

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