Selection Process

Every year, a National Astronomy Olympiad (NAO) will be held to select the US team for the upcoming IOAA. As of 2019, there are two rounds of proctored exams (with multiple choice and free response questions), held in February and March respectively. From these we 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 January 26 and January 30. 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 $25 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 above a cutoff score (TBD) 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 2 and March 8. 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 may be invited to a summer training camp.

Training Camp

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

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.