Selection Process

Every year, a National Astronomy Olympiad (NAO) will be held to select the US team for the upcoming IOAA. As of 2018, there are two rounds of proctored exams (with multiple choice and free response questions), held in February and March respectively. From the sece hope to include a training and selection camp, where the top 15-20 students can learn and be tested on a wider range of material.

First Round

The First Round exam will be a 75 minute long, ~30 multiple choice pen & paper exam covering all parts of the IOAA Syllabus to be taken between February 12 and February 16. The exam must be proctored by a teacher. If no teacher can be found, students can email us at info@usaaao.org. Students are allowed a scientific calculator, as well as the provided table of constants. Additionally, there is a $5 registration fee, though we will offer financial aid on a case by case basis. Depending on the scores of the First Round, students who place in at least the top 25% will be invited to  take the National Astronomy Olympiad.

National Astronomy Olympiad

The NAO will be a 2.5 hour long free response exam covering all parts of the IOAA Syllabus to be taken from between March 26 and April 6. The exam must be proctored by a teacher. If no teacher can be found, students can email us at info@usaaao.org. Students are allowed a scientific calculator, as well as the provided table of constants. The top 5 performers on the NAO will be invited* to represent the USA at the upcoming IOAA.** Additionally, based on performance, solutions, and a variety of other factors, around 15 students will be invited to a summer training camp.

Training Camp

A ~1.5 week long training camp will be held at MIT for students to further develop their astronomy skills and prepare for future competitions.

Eligibility*

Note that you must be a US Citizen or Permanent Resident to qualify for the team, however, you may still take exams if you are not eligible to be on the team.

IOAA**

Please note there is still some uncertainty as to where and how the 12th IOAA will be held. While it was originally planned to be held in either Iran or Sri Lanka, the competition this year may instead be held online. Regardless, we will hold our selection process as usual, and update competitors on any developments.