Mon, Dec 29, 2008 - Page 2 News List

Local students set new record on US math test

EXCELLENT RESULTS About 9,100 Taiwanese students took this year’s test, which consisted of 25 problems, mostly about geometry and probability

By Flora Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taiwan’s junior high and elementary school students shone in this year’s American Mathematics Competitions (AMC).

The Nine Nine Cultural and Educational Foundation, which oversees the AMC tests in Taiwan, said yesterday that of the 412 students worldwide who earned perfect scores in this year’s competitions for students up to and including the seventh grade, 124 were Taiwanese.

The AMC, established in the 1950s by the Mathematical Association of America, is one of a series of high school math competitions that help select competitors for the US team that competes each year at the International Mathematical Olympiad.

About 9,100 Taiwanese students elected to take this year’s test at the end of last month.

Students were required to solve 25 math problems, the majority of which were about geometry and probability.

The number of Taiwanese students with a perfect score hit a new high this year after 121 Taiwanese students received full scores in 2006, the foundation’s statistics showed.

A total of 962 students worldwide were able to solve 24 of the 25 questions. Taiwanese students accounted for 309 of them, tallies showed.

Among the 124 students with a perfect score this year, eight were elementary school students, although some of the questions on the test involved math taught in junior high school.

Lee Cheng-han (李政翰), a sixth grader from Tainan who obtained a perfect score, said he had enjoyed math since second grade.

“I feel happy when I’m doing math,” said Lee of Tainan’s Yungfu Primary School.

Lee said about half of the 25 questions were new to him, but that he had been able to solve them because he had learned how to analyze mathematical problems.

Lin Ching-wei (林靖為), another sixth grader who earned a perfect score, smiled when asked how he did it.

“I just love math,” he said.

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