IMO National Selection Test (IMONST) is a national-level mathematics competition whose objective is to promote mathematical problem solving among Malaysian students, and challenge the top mathematical talents in the country.

There are two competition rounds: IMONST 1 is open to everyone below the age of 20, while IMONST 2 is by invitation only.

Both IMONST 1 and IMONST 2 are online, individual competitions, although the formats for both competitions differ.

IMONST is approved by the Ministry of Education as the selection process for the Malaysian team for the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) 2021. It is organized by the Malaysia IMO Committee, appointed by the MoE.

Download the invitation letter from MoE

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Key Dates

16 July 2020Registration opens for IMONST 1
15 August 2020 28 AUGUST 2020REGISTRATION ENDS
12 September 2020 (10am)
– 14 September 2020 (10pm)
26 September 2020IMONST 1 results announced
IMONST 2 participants announced
17 October 2020
(10am – 3pm)

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Everyone is welcome to participate in IMONST 1. These are the categories:

JuniorForm 1 to Form 3
SeniorForm 4 to Form 6, and pre-university
Open**All others (including university students and adults!)

For IMONST 2, eligible participants with these criteria will be invited:

  • Achieve top scores in IMONST 1 (but not from Open category);
  • Must be a Malaysian citizen;
  • Must be attending school in Malaysia;
  • Must be, at the time of IMO 2021, under 20 years old and not a university student.

* We recommend age 11 and above, though some of the very good younger students would be able to answer the sample IMONST paper. We suggest you look at the sample paper to gauge the level of difficulty of this competition and the suitability of your students/children.

** Participation for the Open category is for fun only. For Open category, there will be no published ranking and no selection to IMONST 2, although every participant will receive a score result and a certificate. Furthermore, it is a fundraising initiative by the Malaysia IMO Committee to support the cost of students training for IMO 2021. There is no fundraising without fun! Due to overwhelming response for the Primary, Junior, and Secondary categories, we have decided to cancel the Open category to make space for the young participants. We believe that this is more beneficial for them in terms of experience and early exposure (however, parents and teachers would have the chance to attempt the IMONST paper after the competition day). Therefore, we will be contacting soon those who have registered for the Open category to provide the competition fee refunds. We sincerely apologise if you are already excited to be part of IMONST this year.

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For top winners:
  • You will get an opportunity to attend the Malaysian IMO training program
  • You will have a chance to represent Malaysia in genuine, credible international mathematics competitions, including the IMO. Many former IMO participants from Malaysia went on to study at the world’s top universities.
For students and teachers:
  • Certification is an important part of a co-curricular activities such as IMONST. Hence, every participant will receive an electronic certificate.
  • The IMONST certificate is highly valuable, as it is a national level event involving the top mathematical talents in the country.
  • Students can receive PAJSK (official co-curricular) marks.
  • Students can apply their knowledge of mathematical theories and skills to solve interesting problems, and assess their performance relative to their peers in the country.
For math enthusiasts of all ages (university students & adults):
  • You can assess your math problem solving skills, and apply the mathematics that you have learned throughout your life. There are problems in IMONST of various levels of difficulties, from easy to very difficult, so you can compare how well you are doing versus others.
  • It is fun!

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Registration is online through the ContestHub system.

There are two types of registrations:

  • Individual registration (Preferred): Registration and payment to be done individually. Login info will be given to participant directly.
  • Multiple registration: Registration and payment to be done by an assigned teacher/person (under individual registration but multiple participants can be registered via one registration account). Login info will be provided to the teacher/person, who will distribute them to each participant.

All communications from the organizer will be done through the ContestHub account page, and occasionally through email.

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The registration fee is RM30 per participant.

We only accept online payments at ContestHub.

(Note that the invoice will be issued under Ardent Educational Consultants SB, which manages the payment gateway and the contest system, but is not the organizer of IMONST).

We shall entertain any cancellations up til the registration closing date, which is on the 28th of August 2020. However, we shall not be entertaining any refund requests (except for the participants in the now-cancelled Open category) after this date.

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Competition Procedure (IMONST 1)

The new IMONST 2020 is scheduled to take place on 12-14 September 2020. We have migrated to a more stable and reliable contest system that has been used by several large mathematical competitions including those in the UK and Australia. We hope that the contest will run smoothly this time. You can download the new contest guide here:

The new contest site is:

  1. The new Contest Site is now up and running. However, the actual contest will only be open between 10.00am, 12 September 2020 (Saturday) and 10.00pm, 14 September 2020 (Monday).
  2. On 10 September 2020 (Thursday), we will upload the new usernames and passwords on ContestHub ( The procedure for retrieving the username and passwords is similar as before. Please distribute the new usernames and passwords to all participants before the contest opens on 12 September 2020.
  3. IMPORTANT: The usernames and passwords are different from those used on 5 September 2020. Please retrieve the passwords on or after the 10 September 2020 so that you will get the updated usernames and passwords to be used on the new website.
  4. To get you familiar with the interface, we will upload a Practice Test on the Contest Site on 10 September 2020. Contestants may use their new username and password to access the Practice Test.
  5. The contest duration is 2.5 hours. You can start anytime within the contest period. Once you start the contest, the timer will count down, even though you have a problem with your computer/internet, so make sure your setup is stable.
  6. It is recommended to take the contest from 10.00am to 4.00pm, otherwise customer service might not be available if you have any question. Don’t start too close to the ending time, otherwise you might not get the full 2.5 hours to complete.

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Since IMONST is an online competition, students need a internet connection and a device (preferably a desktop or laptop computer, but phones and tablets can be used as well). Please make sure your internet connection is stable, otherwise you will lose time if your internet is interrupted.

At a minimum, prepare a pen and paper to do your calculations. All IMONST problems can be solved without a calculator.

You are allowed to refer to any book or any website and use a calculator. IMONST is an open-book competition.

IMPORTANT: You must sit for the competition alone, without the help of another person. If there is any evidence of collaboration or assistance from other people, you will be disqualified and blacklisted from all future IMONST (and a report will be made to the Ministry of Education).

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Format of IMONST 1
  • Time: 2.5 hours.
  • You may start at any time within the designated period on the competition dates (10am on 12 September to 10pm 14th September). However, if you start too late, you will not have the full 2.5 hours to complete the paper, since the system closes at 10pm on the 14th of September.
  • The participants in the Primary, Junior, and Senior & Open categories will receive different papers and the rankings are done separately for all categories.
  • There are 20 problems in total. There will be Malay and English versions of the problem.
  • The problems are divided into 4 parts, in increasing order of difficulty:
Part# of problems# of points for each problem
  • For each problem you have to submit the answer only. The answer to each problem is a non-negative integer.
  • No mark is deducted for a wrong answer.
  • The maximum number of points is (1 + 2 + 3 + 4) x 5 = 50 points.
Format of IMONST 2
  • Time: 4.5 hours.
  • There are 6 problems, each worth 7 points. There will be Malay and English versions of the problem.
  • To get full points for each problem, you have to write a complete solution, with the correct mathematical reasoning. You can either write the solution in Malay or English.
  • A suggested reading assignment will be distributed to all participants 3 weeks before the competition.

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Syllabus and Sample Problems

IMONST covers various topics, including but not limited to:

  • Number Theory: Properties of Integers, Primes, Divisibility, Modulo Arithmetic.
  • Algebra: Algebraic Expressions, Factorization, Equations, Polynomials, Inequalities, Sequences, Functions.
  • Combinatorics (Counting): Basic Counting, Pigeonhole Principle, Permutations and Combinations.
  • Geometry: Measurements (Angles, Lengths, Areas, Volumes), Circles, Triangles, Quadrilaterals, Polygons, Similar Figures, Geometric Transformation.
Reading Materials

There are many books, videos, and websites that you may use for IMONST preparation.

For newcomers, we recommend these texts as reference:

Both of these texts are available online, freely and legally.

Sample Problems

You may download the sample paper below. The sample paper contains typical mathematics olympiad problems, and have similar level of difficulty with the actual IMONST paper.

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 1

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 2

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 3

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 1 (with Answers)

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 2 (with Answers)

IMONST 1 Sample Paper 3 (with Answers)

IMONST 1 2020 Questions (with Answers)

Visit the IMO Malaysia Facebook page for videos discussing the problems from the sample paper.

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Results & Certificates

Results will be announced on this website 2 weeks after the competition.

Gold, Silver, and Bronze Awards will be given to top scorers in each category, except Open. The awards are symbolic (not an actual medal).

After the result is announced, you will receive an electronic certificate and a personalized score report. The score report contains detailed results and analysis on your performance relative to other contestants.

Selection for IMONST 2

Selection for IMONST 2 are based on the IMONST 1 scores.

About 300 participants will be selected for IMONST 2, from among the top scorers of the Primary, Junior, and Senior categories.

Although the IMO requires a high level of mathematical maturity, the Malaysian IMO training program puts a lot of focus on training younger students, who will have more years to prepare for the IMO in the future (the youngest IMO participant from Malaysia was 12 years old).

A technical note about tie-breaker: In case of ties around the cut-off score, a weighted score will be used as a tie-breaker. The weighted score assigns a weight for each problem depending on the actual difficulty of the problems (based on the number of correct answers), which will be calculated post hoc.

Our commitment to inclusiveness: To promote diversity in the IMO program, 10% of the slots in IMONST 2 are reserved for students who do well in IMONST 1, and belong to a historically underrepresented demographic (e.g., gender, socioeconomic background, geographical area) in the IMO training program.

What’s Next

The top winners of IMONST 2 will be invited for the IMO 2021 training program. The IMO training program takes place from November 2020 to July 2021 and consists of:

  • online and offline workshops;
  • homework assignments;
  • participation in several international mathematical competitions.

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Q: Is IMONST going to substitute OMK as the national selection for IMO?

A: Only for IMO 2021, since the OMK is cancelled this year due to COVID-19.

Q: What level is the PAJSK (co-curricular) score that students can get by taking part in IMONST?

A: IMONST1 is considered a school level since it is an open competition. However, IMONST2 is counted at a national level as it involves top selected students from the whole country.

Q: The IMONST sample problems are too difficult for primary students.

A: That is generally correct. However there are very talented primary school students (especially those with some math competition background) who would be able to do well. We’d like to give them the opportunity to join the IMO program, and hopefully join the IMO in future years.

Q: Why is there an Open category if they are not eligible for IMO?

A: The objective of IMONST is not just the IMO, despite the name. IMONST is supposed to be an exciting event to celebrate mathematical problem solving and creative thinking. There are many reasons to take part: to test your math skills, to apply existing knowledge, to have fun, to support the training for IMO 2021, etc.

Q: I am a non-citizen / non-resident of Malaysia. Am I eligible for IMONST?

A: You are welcome to participate in IMONST 1, which is an open competition. However, you will not be eligible for IMONST 2 since it is meant for the Malaysian team selection for IMO.

Q: I want to participate but I cannot afford the fees.

A: We allow fee waiver for students who have difficulty paying the fees. Please send us a request letter, and attach a supporting statement signed by your school principal / headmaster or equivalent authorities.

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If you have any question regarding IMONST, you can call or Whatsapp us at 011-61964201 (Anis) or 011-61974132 (Faiz), during office hours.

You can also join the IMONST Official Group on Telegram for questions.

Alternatively, email us at

For information and updates, you can follow us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

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