The Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge
(COMC) is a mathematics competition
held in Canada
that is one of the most often-used ways to determine participants for the Canadian Mathematical Olympiad
. It is run by the Canadian Mathematical Society
in collaboration with the Centre for Education in Mathematics and Computing and sponsored by Sun Life Financial
. The competition is targeted mainly at senior-level students, though younger students often participate.
The COMC was founded in 1996
by current chair Larry Rice. The current committee also includes Bill Bisset, Mike Eden, Brian McBain, Ian McGee, Mike Mosca, Daryl Tingley and Bruce White.
"Official" qualifiers for the COMC must satisfy the following criteria:
- They are less that 19 years of age at the time of the contest.
- They have been registered at a Canadian school since the beginning of the year of the contest.
Participants (known as "unofficial" participants) whom do not satisfy this criteria cannot win any rewards. Students from foreign nations like the USA can participate as "unofficial" participants through a mathematics program in their school or otherwise.
held COMC is two and a half hours long with 12 problems. The questions are divided into two sections; the first section, known as Part A, has 8 problems and generally has easier problems, with each question being 5 points. Part B has 4 problems, and each problem is worth 10 points. The total score is out of 80, and the cutoff for CMO qualification is generally somewhere around 70. Approximately 7,000 people take the COMC annually.
There are three types of awards
for scoring well on the COMC.
- For each province, a Provincial Champion is named, who receives a plaque.
- Approximately fifty high scorers on the COMC are selected as participants for the Canadian Mathematical Olympiad each year.
- A number of high ranking students receive a gold medal.