Promoting a love of problem solving

The Senior Mathematical Challenge is a 60-minute, multiple-choice Challenge.

It encourages mathematical reasoning, precision of thought, and fluency in using basic mathematical techniques to solve interesting problems.

The problems on the Senior Mathematical Challenge are designed to make students think. Most are accessible, yet still challenge those with more experience.

Date: 3-4 November 2021

Eligible year groups: England, Wales and Overseas - Year 13 or below, Scotland S6 or below, Northern Ireland - Year 14 or below

Time allowed: 60 minutes

Entry fee: £13 for a pack of 10 entries

Entries will open soon!

How to take part

  1. Entries must be made by registered UKMT centres on behalf of students.
  2. You can order a paper, online version or a combination of both.
  3. The Challenge must be sat under exam conditions.
  4. We mark the papers and online entries and notify you of the results.

Results, certificates and follow-on rounds

All students will receive a certificate of participation. To recognize the highest performers in the Challenge, we award the top-scoring 40% of participants Bronze, Silver and Gold certificates in the ratio 3:2:1. Students that are 'Best in Year' or 'Best in School' will also receive a badge to denote this on their certificates. Certificates have the student names pre-populated and can be downloaded and printed as soon as results are released.

In addition, we invite around 1000 of the very highest performers to take part in the British Mathematical Olympiad Round 1 and around 6000 to take part in the Senior Kangaroo.

The 2020 award thresholds were:

91+ Gold, 73+ Silver, 59+ Bronze. Thresholds for invitation to Senior Kangaroo 91+ and BMO1 108+ depending on eligibility.

Preparing for the Challenge

We hope that taking part in the Senior Mathematical Challenge is a stimulating and rewarding experience for all students, whether or not they have prepared.

You can utilise our previous online Challenges, download past papers, solutions and investigations here. They are a great resource containing high-quality problems designed to encourage mathematical thinking and prepare students for the Challenge. We are also delighted to be working with DrFrostMaths to help teachers use past problems in the classroom.

We also sell downloadable past papers and books which can help with your preparation.

Contributing to our work

As a charity, we do not make a profit from entry fees. We spend all the money we raise on advancing the education of young people in mathematics. If you would like to support us further then please consider making a donation.

Our volunteers are at the heart of everything UKMT does from creating the Challenges to running our Enrichment activities. If you would like to find out more about volunteering with us please do get in touch.