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University of Iowa News Release

May 30, 2003

UI Co-Hosts North American Mathematics Competition May 30-31

The University of Iowa is one of three hosts today and Saturday, May 30-31, for the 28th annual American Regions Mathematics League (ARML) competition, which is bringing to campus some of the country's brightest young mathematicians.

The ARML competition is held simultaneously at three college campuses, all of which are connected via satellite during the event. In addition to the UI campus, Penn State and San Jose State universities are hosting the competition.

Most of the UI portion of the competition will take place Saturday in the Iowa Memorial Union and will bring to the campus 27 teams made up of 450 students and 70 coaches and chaperones who will represent the following states: Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin. Other states, as well as provinces in Canada, will be represented at the other two campuses.

The Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development has sponsored the event at the UI since 1991.

"The ARML competition is an excellent academic and social outlet for the energy and enthusiasm for math that are exhibited by the participants," said Susan Assouline, associate director of the Belin-Blank Center. "We are proud to have such incredible talent on the University of Iowa campus."

ARML teams are made up of 15 high school students who challenge one another in abstract problem solving. Each team also brings two alternates, who sometimes form additional teams. The math involved is at or beyond the college calculus level.

The competition involves four rounds. In the Team Round, members work together to attempt to correctly answer 10 questions in 20 minutes. Points are given for each correct answer. The Power Question Round requires teams to work a multi-part problem that focuses on some mathematical idea. Teams have one hour to work the examples and provide proofs.

In the Individual Round, participants have 10 minutes to individually work on eight problems. In the Relay Round, teams break up into three-person sub-teams, and each member is responsible for a component of a multi-part question. Each team ends with a single answer.

The Belin-Blank Center, established in 1988, specializes in programming and research to meet the educational needs of exceptionally talented children and their teachers. The center conducts an extensive roster of talent searches, precollege programs, teacher training workshops and counseling programs.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Stephen Pradarelli, 319-384-0007,