The Malaysian IMO team is selected through a rigorous selection process.
The National Mathematical Olympiad (Olimpiad Matematik Kebangsaan, or OMK) is open to all students studying in Malaysian schools at secondary level. However, only Malaysian citizens will be shortlisted for IMO selection, in line with IMO Regulations 2.2.
Age and Education Status: All students participating in IMO must be born less than twenty years before 1 July in the year of participation at the IMO, and must have been normally enrolled in full-time secondary education on or after 1 December in the year prior to the IMO.
The national selection normally takes place through the OMK. However, OMK 2020 have been cancelled due to the current health situation.
As an alternative, in 2020 a new online competition called IMONST (IMO National Selection Test) is taking its place as the national selection to IMO. You can find more details at the IMONST page.
IMO Training Camps
There is a series of training camps (usually four per year) taking place from December to May. Invitation to the IMO training camps are sent out by Ministry of Education Malaysia.
The top performers in the national selection will be invited to the first training camp. The number of students are then decreased for each subsequent camps based on their cumulative performance.
During the training camps, students will learn through lectures and problem solving sessions on a variety of mathematical topics at the IMO level. There will be a daily assessment involving a short test (2 hours). A longer final test (4-5 hours) is normally given on the last day of each camp. In between camps, students are given homework assignments which account for a significant part of the overall grade.
During the camps, students will participate in the Asian Pacific Mathematical Olympiad in March, and the Tournament of Towns, in April/May. These contests are organized locally so no international travel is required.
After a series of training camps (typically four), the final six members for the IMO team are selected. These six students will undergo extensive training leading to the IMO, as well as a longer Mindsetting Camp, before their departure to IMO.
Here are some reflections about their IMO journey by some Malaysian ex-Olympians.