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Academic Programs

Blaise Pascal Competition Rules

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The deadline for early registration for the competition is October 18, two weeks before the competition date.  School advisors should return the enclosed registration form, including the name and class level of each student participant.  Schools may register a maximum of 20 students for the competition.  There is a registration fee of $4 per student participant, which includes lunch at the campus Dining Commons.  (See below.)  Registration fees should be included with the registration form.

Any registration forms received after October 18 will be considered late registration, and a fee of $6 per student will be assessed.  Late registration is available on the morning of the competition; if your school needs to register one or more students after the October 18 date, please plan on arriving early on the morning of the competition.  There is no fee for substituting another student for a previously registered student on the day of the competition; be sure to notify the check-in personnel of any changes to your school’s roster.


Check-in for all schools will begin at 8:30 am on November 1 in the lobby of the Everest-Rohrer building.  Please try to arrive as soon as possible to ensure that the program begins on time.  The check-in process is important, as additional information will be given to your school at that time.


The exam will take place in the classrooms of the Academic Center building.  Student volunteers will be available on the day of the competition to escort schools to the proper classroom.

The exam will consist of 45 questions.  Students will have 90 minutes to complete the exam.  Topics include those covered in a standard high school curriculum, including algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus.  However, there will also be several questions about the history of mathematics, including at least one on the life of Blaise Pascal.  Exam questions will be multiple choice, each with five answer choices.  A correct answer will receive 4 points; an unanswered question will receive no points; an incorrect answer will receive -1 point.

No instruments or aids other than a writing utensil and scratch paper are allowed during the competition.  No. 2 pencils will be provided, but students may also bring their own.  Cell phones, pages, MP3 players, and other electronics should be turned off and stowed.


A portion of the student registration fee covers lunch at the campus Dining Commons, located between the Everest-Rohrer and Academic Center buildings.  The facility has a variety of food choices, including pizza, grill options (such as hamburgers), freshly prepared pasta dishes, a main menu item, and a salad bar.  Participants have from 11:30 to 1 pm to dine, so it is asked that not every student immediately enter the Dining Commons after the competition has ended.  Please note:  Lunch for one accompanying teacher from each school will be covered by their students’ registration fees.  Any additional teachers will need to pay for their own meal.

In addition to eating lunch, participants are encouraged to tour the campus and walk through the various displays in the lobby and Rotunda of the Everest-Rohrer building.  More information about Bethel College, its departments and programs, and its student organizations is available.  Student and faculty volunteers will also be available to answer questions and help out as needed.


Exams will be graded during lunch, and the results will be announced during the awards ceremony following. 

Each student in the competition will receive an individual score.  Additionally, the top three scores from each school will be combined to form a team score for that school.  (Team members do not need to be designated beforehand; the individuals with the top three scores in the school will automatically be combined into a team for that school.)  Please note that all students from the home school community will be grouped together as one school for this team formation.

Awards will be given in the following four categories: 

  1. The top three individual scores among seniors in the competition;
  2. The top three individual scores overall among freshmen, sophomores, and juniors;
  3. The top three individual scores overall;
  4. The top three team scores.

The names of the schools that win the top team score are recorded on a plaque in the Bethel College Mathematics Sciences Department.

Additionally, a random drawing will take place on stage for a special prize.  During the last competition, this was an iPod Nano.  Any student registered for the competition and present during the awards ceremony is eligible to win.