Technology Class

Competition Guide

Participating in competitions helps students flex their intellectual muscles, deepen their passion in the chosen field, and ultimately help them stand out in college admissions. Students are challenged to develop exceptional talents and encouraged to push to the limits of their academic abilities. We have summarized this Competition Guide to provide a comprehensive list of contests students, K-12, can participate in, including math, physics, computer science, economics, psychology, neuroscience, geometry, political science, writing, and more! We provide private and group coaching for various competitions.

There are many nuances worth noting. Check the individual competition’s website and discuss with our college admissions counselor to identify the right competitions for your schedule, dreams, and abilities. First, our list is organized based on the college major that a contest can best prepare you for. However, some contests help you strengthen and showcase foundational skills such as math, writing, and communication, and you should consider these contests no matter what major you aim to pursue. For example, if you strive to study business, recognition from a math competition or speech and debate will also make you stand out in addition to those more business specific contests. 

Second, within each category of competitions, the list is sorted by prestige or competitiveness (noted by the number of stars *), based on the name recognition and our past experience. Don’t shy away from the tougher ones because it’s harder to win. The key is to challenge yourself as much as possible. Neither should you neglect the relatively easier or less prestigious competitions because they also provide a valuable learning and growth experience. 

In terms of schedule and registration, some competitions have regional rounds before the national or international round, and the state or regional round schedules vary depending on your location. So, the schedule listed in our table may not be the correct schedule for your location or competition plan. The schedule can also change from year to year. Further, some competitions welcome individual contestants, while others require team participation. Check the website for details about the schedule and registration rules. 

Math

United States Academic Decathlon USAD  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  April

Regeneron Science Talent Search (STS)  |  Ages 13-18  |  *****  |  June-November

AMC12  |  Grades 12 or Below  |  *****  |  November

Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF)  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  May

Math Counts  |  Grades 6-8  |  *****  |  November-May

AMC10  |  Grades 10 or Below  |  ****  |  November

Breakthrough Junior Challenge  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  March-July

Kaggle  |  Grades K-12  |  ****  |  February-May

Model United Nation  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  October-May

Technology Student Association STEM Competition (TSA)  |  Grades 5-12  |  ****  |  June

AMC8  |  Grades 8 or Below  |  ****  |  January

MathLeague   |  Grades 4-12  |  ***  |  October-April

High School Mathematical Contest in Modeling (HiMCM)  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  November

Math Olympiad for Elementary and Middle Schools (MOEMS)  |  Grades 4-8  |  ***  |  January-May

New York Times STEM Writing Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  February-March

Middle School Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MidMCM)  |  Grades 6-8  |  ***  |  November

ARML The American Regions Mathematics League  |  Grades 12 or Below  |  ***  |  April-June

International Mathematics Modeling Challenge  |  Grades K-8  |  ***  |  March-May

Harvard MIT Math Tournament (HMMT)  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  November-February

Math Kangaroo  |  Grades 1-12  |  ***  |  March

Caribou Contest  |  Grades K-12  |  **  |  January-November

Zoom International Math League (ZIML)  |  Grades 5-12  |  **  |  October-June

Duke Math Meet  |  Grades 9-12  |  *  |  November

Berkeley Math Tournament  |  Grades 6-12  |  *  |  February-November

Science

Science Olympiad  |  Grades 4-12  |  *****  |  September-May

USA Biology Olympiad (USABO)  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  February

National Science Bowl  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  January-July

US National Chemistry Olympiad  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  March-April

StellarXplorers  |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  October-April

Breakthrough Junior Challenge  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  March-July

National Science Bee  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  January-June

International Young Physicists’ Tournament  |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  July

National Ocean Sciences Bowl  |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  January-May

USA Brain Bee |  Ages 13-19  |  ****  |  April

International Junior Society Science Olympiad  |  Ages 15 or Under  |  ****  |  December

Technology Student Association STEM Competition (TSA)  |  Grades 5-12  |  ****  |  June

California Science and Engineering Fair  |  Grades 5-12  |  ***  |  September-April

Los Angeles Brain Bee  |  Ages 13-19  |  ***  |  January

International Space Settlement Design Competition  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  January-May

New York Times STEM Writing Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  February-March

Princeton University Physics Premier Competition  |  Grades 9-12  |  **  |  November

Princeton University Physics Explorer Competition   |  Grades 9-12  |  **  |  February-March

Social Science

Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF)  |  Grades 9-12  | *****  |  May

International History Olympiad  |  Grades 6-12  | *****  |  July

International Geography Olympiad  |  Grades 6-12  | *****  |  July-August

Regeneron Science Talent Search (STS)  |  Ages 13-18  | *****  |  June-November

National Speech and Debate  |  Grades 6-12  | *****  |  June-August

International Linguistics Olympiad  |  Grades 9-12  | *****  |  July

Science Olympiad  |  Grades 4-12  | *****  |  September-May

US and International Philosophy Olympiad  |  Grades 9-12  | *****  |  February-May

United States Academic Decathlon USAD  |  Grades 9-12  | *****  |  April

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards  |  Grades 7-12  | *****  |  September-December

International Geography Bee  |  Grades 6-12  | *****  |  June-July

National Political Science Bee  |  Grades 6-12  | *****  |  January-April

US Geography Championships  |  Grades 1-12  | ****  |  March-April

North American Computational Linguistics Open Competition (NACLO)  |  Grades 9-12  | ****  |  January-March

National History Bee  |  Grades K-12  | ****  |  March-April

National History Bowl  |  Grades K-12  | ****  |  March-April

Model United Nation  |  Grades 6-12  | ****  |  October-May

New York Times Profile Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  January-February

New York Times STEM Writing Contest  |  Grades 9-12  | *****  |  February-March

New York Times Student Review Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  November-December

Los Angeles Mock Trial  |  Grades 9-12  | ***  |  September-December

California Science and Engineering Fair  |  Grades 6-12  | ***  |  September-April

Bennington Young Writers Award  |  Grades 9-12  | ***  |  September-October

New York Times Summer Reading Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  June-August

New York Times Student Editorial Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  March-April

Harvard International Review Academic Writing Contest  |  Grades 9-12  | ***  |  January-December

New York Times Personal Narrative Writing Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  October-November

New York Times Student Podcast Contest  |  Ages 11-19  | ***  |  April-May

John Locke Global Essay Competition  |  Ages 18 or Under  | **  |  March-June

Engineering and Technology

Regeneron Science Talent Search (STS)  |  Ages 13-18  |  *****  |  June-November

US Computing Olympiad USACO  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  December-March

Science Olympiad  |  Grades 4-12  |  *****  |  September-May

United States Academic Decathlon USAD  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  April

Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF)  |  Grades 9-12 |  *****  |  May

Google Code Jam Competition  |  Ages 18 or above for World Finals. No age requirements for other rounds.  |  ****  |  April-May

Kaggle  |  Grades K-12  |  ****  |  February-May

American Computer Science League ACSL  |  Grades 3-12  |  ****  |  November-May

VEX Competition  |  Grades 4-12 |  ****  |  May

National Robotics Challenge  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  April

Google Hash Code Competition  |  Ages 18 or above for World Finals. No age requirements for other rounds.  |  ****  |  January-February

Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA)  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  May-July

Model United Nation |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  October-May

National Youth Cyber Defense Competition (CyberPatriot)  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  May-October

FIRST Tech Challenge |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  October-April

Technology Student Association STEM Competition (TSA)  |  Grades 5-12  |  ****  |  June

FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  January-April

New York Times STEM Writing Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  February-March

FIRST LEGO League League |  Grades 4-8  |  ***  |  November-June

Business Professionals of America  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  April-May

International Space Settlement Design Competition |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  January-May

California Science and Engineering Fair  |  Grades 6-12  |  ***  |  September-April

Literature and Language

National Political Science Bee  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  January-April

US and International Philosophy Olympiad  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  February-May

International Linguistics Olympiad   |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  July

United States Academic Decathlon USAD  |  Grades 9-12  |  *****  |  April

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards  |  Grades 7-12  |  *****  |  September-December

National Speech and Debate  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  June-August

International History Olympiad   |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  July

International Geography Bee  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  June-July

International Geography Olympiad |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  July-August

National History Bee  |  Grades K-12  |  ****  |  March-April

US Geography Championships   |  Grades 1-12  |  ****  |  March-April

North American Computational Linguistics Open Competition (NACLO)  |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  January-March

Model United Nation  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  October-May

National History Bowl  |  Grades K-12  |  ****  |  March-April

Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest   |  Grades 6-12  |  ***  |  October-April

Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest  |  Grades 6-12  |  ***  |  April-September

New York Times Student Editorial Contest   |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  March-April

New York Times Student Podcast Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  April-May

New York Times Summer Reading Contest   |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  June-August

Bennington Young Writers Award  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  September-October

New York Times Personal Narrative Writing Contest   |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  October-November

New York Times STEM Writing Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  February-March

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest   |  Grades 6-12  |  ***  |  August-April

New York Times Profile Contest  |  Ages 11-19  |  ***  |  January-February

Los Angeles Mock Trial   |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  September-December

Harvard International Review Academic Writing Contest  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  January-December

New York Times Student Review Contest |  Ages 11-19  |  **  |  November-December

Princeton University Leonard Milberg High School Poetry Prize   |  Grades 9-12  |  **  |  November

John Locke Global Essay Competition  |  Ages 18 or Under  |  **  |  March-June

River of Words Art and Poetry Competition   |  Grades K-12  |  **  |  October-November

Jane Austen Society of North America Essay Contest  |  Grades 9-12  |  **  |  May-June

Columbia College Chicago Young Authors Writing Competition   |  Grades 9-12  |  **  |  December-January

Business

National Speech and Debate  |  Grades 6-12  |  *****  |  June-August

National Economics Challenge  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  February-April

Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA)  |  Grades 6-12  |  ****  |  May-July

The Diamond Challenge   |  Grades 9-12  |  ****  |  September-December

Business Professionals of America  |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  April-May

Wharton Global High School Investment Competition (KWHS)   |  Grades 9-12  |  ***  |  September-December

Harvard International Economics Essay Contest   |  Grades 6-12  |  **  |  October-December

Art and Design

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards  |  Grades 7-12  |  *****  |  September-December

Technology Student Association STEM Competition (TSA)  |  Grades 5-12  |  **** |  June

Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Contest  |  Ages 11-18 |  ***  |  May-June