Mathematical Olympiad - Category P (Programming)

(Česká verze zde. Česká verze obsahuje aktuální informace a archív úloh.)
(Czech version contains news and archive of the Olympiad.)

?What is the category P of the Mathematical Olympiad?

The category P of the Mathematical Olympiad is opened for all students of secondary schools in Czech Republic regardless their age. The competition problems are of algorithmic and programming nature. The problems do not require only routine computer and programming skills but also designing effective algorithms is necessary. This is the most important difference from most of other programming contests.

The Mathematical Olympiad is an official competition of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of Czech Republic. It is supervised by the professional organization Union of Czech Mathematicians and Physicians. The scientific background (preparation of problems, evaluation etc.) of the category P is guaranteed by lecturers and students of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Charles Univeristy, Prague.

Official web pages of the Mathematical Olympiad (only in Czech)

?Course of the competition

The competition was founded in 1985 during the 35th annual Mathematical Olympiad. The course of the competition is similar to the category A which is the mathematical competition. There is no school round during the competition in contradistinction to the category A. Each annual competition consists of three competition rounds - home, regional and national round. The texts of home round competition problems are distributed to schools and their students in September and October, the texts are also published in some professional journals. There are four home round problems, some of them are of a theoretical nature and some are of a practical nature. The solutions of theoretical problems are written by students on paper; the solutions of practical ones (programs in Pascal or C) are stored on diskettes with short descriptions of used algorithms. The solutions are revised by regional committees of the Mathematical Olympiad in December. Successfull competitors are invited to compete in regional rounds held in January. There are four regional round problems; all of them are of a theoretical nature. The time limit for their solving is 4 hours. The solutions of regional round problems from all the regions are revised together at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics in Prague. The 30 most successfull competitors are invated to compete in the national round. It is usually held in April just after the national round of the category A. There are two competition days in the national round. During the first day students try to solve three theoretical problems, during the second day students try to solve two practical problems. The solutions of practical problems are tested using prepared input data sets; time limits for the duration of computations are used. Data sets are designed to make difference between the programs using fast algorithms and slow ones.

Address for obtaining further information

Pavel Töpfer
Faculty of Mathematics and Physics
Malostranské nám. 25
118 00 Praha 1
Czech Republic

Phone: (02) 2191 4215
E-mail: or

Correspondence seminars in programming

There are correspondence seminars in programming organized in addition to the olympiad. Students receive several (usually five) series of problems of the same type as in the olympiad. The problems in seminars are usually a bit easier than the problems in the olympiad. Students send their solutions (not necessary of all the problems) to the seminar centre; their solutions are revised and sent back. The best students are invited to the annual seminar camp.

The Correspondence seminar in Programming, Prague, Czech Republic
The Correspondence seminar in Programming, Bratislava, Slovakia
The Correspondence seminar in Informatics, FI MU Brno

International competitions

The best students from different countries all over the world take part in the international competitions. The top competition is the International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI); teams from more than 60 countries take part in IOI. Members of the Czech team are selected among the best students at the national round of the category P. Czech Republic has participated in all IOIs and our teams do very well in the competition. IOI problems are only practical and the course of the competition is similar to the second day of the national round.

The official web pages of IOI

Past and Future IOIs

1989 Pravec, Bulgaria
1990 Minsk, Belarus
1991 Athens, Greece
1992 Bonn, Germany
1993 Mendoza, Argentina
1994 Haninge, Sweden
1995 Eindhoven, The Netherlands
1996 Veszprém, Hungary
1997 Cape Town, South Africa
1998 Setúbal, Portugal
1999 Antalya, Turkey
2000 Peking, China
2001 Tampere, Finland
2002 Yong-In City, South Korea
2003 Kenosha, Wisconsin, United States
2004 Athens, Greece
2005 Nowy Sacz, Poland
2006 Mérida, Yucatan, Mexico
2007 Zagreb, Croatia
2008 Cairo, Egypt
2009 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
2010 Waterloo, Canada
2011 Pattaya, Thailand
2012 Sirmione, Italy
2013 Brisbane, Australia
2014 Taipei, Taiwan
2015 Almaty, Kazakhstan
2016 Kazan, Russia
2017 Iran
2018 Japan
2019 Azerbaijan
2020 Singapore

There are also several regional international competitions. Their organization is similar to IOI and their main goal is to prepare students for future competing at IOI. The Czech team takes part in the Central European Olympiad in Informatics (CEOI); other countries which take part in CEOI are Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Germany, Romania, Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Czech team is selected from the best students at the national round who are going to finish their secondary school studies in one or more years. In 1999, CEOI was held in Czech Republic for the first time. The competition was organized by members of the Faculty of Informatics in Brno (accomodation, trips and other leisure time activies) and by members of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics in Prague (problem preparation and evaluation).

Past and Future CEOIs

1994 Cluj, Romania
1995 Szeged, Hungary
1996 Bratislava, Slovakia
1997 Nowy Sacz, Poland
1998 Zadar, Croatia
1999 Brno, Czech Republic
2000 Cluj, Romania
2001 Zalaegerszeg, Hungary
2002 Kosice, Slovakia
2003 Münster, Germany
2004 Rzeszow, Poland
2005 Sarospatak, Hungary
2006 Vrsar, Croatia
2007 Brno, Czech Republic
2008 Dresden, Germany
2009 Targu-Mures, Romania
2010 Kosice, Slovakia
2011 Gdynia, Poland
2012 Tata, Hungary
2013 Primosten, Croatia
2014 Jena, Germany
2015 Brno, Czech republic
2016 Piatra Neamt, Romania
2017 Slovenia

Besides the international olympiads, students from the Czech Republic also take part in the Czech-Polish-Slovak Preperation Camp (CPSPC) which offers an opportunity to practice solving IOI-like tasks. The camp is organized jointly by the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia. So far, the camp was held three times in the Czech Republic. The task descriptions and solutions from some of the camps can be found at the CPSPC web page.
Last modified: 08/12/2015 - comments to
The contents of these pages can be used under the Creative Commons CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0 license.