Mandelbrot Team Play

[Mandelbrot Competition Rules]

The rules below are a comprehensive summary of the guidelines appearing in other parts of this web site. Coordinators should be familiar with all of these rules prior to the first round, particularly those concerning administration. For a less terse (but less detailed) exposition, consult the instructions for administering the Mandelbrot Team Play found on the Forms page.

Enrollment / Rounds

  • Only coordinators of schools or groups currently participating in the Mandelbrot Competition may register for the Mandelbrot Team Play. For more information on who may enroll in the Mandelbrot Competition, please consult the Mandelbrot Competition rules.
  • Coordinators will continue to utilize their Mandelbrot accounts to manage online information. Furthermore, the previously assigned school code will be used to anonymously identify student papers during the grading process.
  • Each registered school may enroll up to three teams to participate in the Team Play. There are no levels or regions in this contest: every team will work on the same set of questions and all teams will compete within a single league.
  • All contest originals and solutions may be downloaded from the web site the week prior to the contest dates. Instructions, preparation materials, and other forms are available at any time via the Forms page.
  • The Mandelbrot Team Play takes place in three rounds held during the first half of January, February, and March. (The dates for each round are displayed on the Information page.) Schools that have conflicts with both of these weeks must contact Greater Testing Concepts before making alternate arrangements.
  • Greater Testing Concepts reserves the right to disqualify a school and refund the registration fee at any point during the course of the competition.



  • The coordinator may choose any groups of four students (one group for each team enrolled) to officially take the Team Play. The students may change from round to round and need not be taking the Mandelbrot Competition. Further advice on forming teams is available on the FAQ page.
  • One hour is allowed for the Mandelbrot Team Play. While calculators, notes, and textbooks are not permitted, students may employ ruler, compass, and graph paper. Team members can and should confer with one another during the Team Play, but may not communicate with proctors or students within other groups during the test.
  • The Team Play consists of a series of six questions which lead to a single result or which center about a single theme. Two parts are worth 4 points each, while the other four parts are worth 5 points, for a maximum of 28 points. Student responses are evaluated by a central panel of graders, then scores and feedback are posted at the Scorecenter.
  • Solutions to the Team Play consist of written explanations (proofs) rather than numbers or equations. Partial credit is awarded, so students should include any thoughts or observations relevant to the question. However, scrap work should not be submitted.
  • Team Play topics, practice problems, and solutions are provided ahead of time, so that students may prepare for the test. Solutions are provided along with the contest materials, and may be distributed once all test papers are collected. Of course, students should refrain from discussing problems and solutions outside of their school until the close of the two-week contest window.
  • Coordinators are strongly encouraged to photocopy student work, since papers are not returned. The school code and team number must be indicated on each page submitted. Student responses are then mailed to Greater Testing Concepts as soon as possible for the grading weekend, generally scheduled three full weeks after the contest window.


Scoring / Prizes

  • A team's score for a round is the sum of their scores on each of the six parts. A team's score for the year is the sum of its scores for the three rounds. When calculating cumulative scores, the best team scores are tallied for the first team, followed by the next best for the second team, and so on.
  • The top five distinct schools on the Mandelbrot Team Play will be awarded a large engraved plaque. (In other words, at most one plaque will be awarded per school.) Individual prizes are not awarded on this contest.

Top of Page | The Mandelbrot Competition | Information | Introduction | Home