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AIME score & MIT

ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
edited June 25 in College Admissions
Hey guys!

I'm a rising senior who is heavily involved in math competitions. This year, I was able to get a 12 on the AIME, but missed USAMO qualification. How big of a boost will my AIME score give me for MIT? How about other schools?
edited June 25
23 replies
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Replies to: AIME score & MIT

  • ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
    Any insight would be highly valued =)
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  • ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
    Bump =)
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  • hebegebehebegebe 2964 replies42 threads Senior Member
    They had AIME this year? Was it proctored? What was your AMC-12 score and what was USAMO cutoff this year?

    A score of 12 is a very good and will help with admission, but it is only one part. MIT has a place to enter those score on its application. For the Common App, put it down as an activity or in additional information.

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  • squ1rrelsqu1rrel 451 replies35 threads Member
    Many MIT applicants will have similar/higher AIME scores. Some people make MOP and still get rejected. Of course, a good AIME score will be a nice addition to your application, but it won't be game changing.
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  • yearstogoyearstogo 833 replies30 threads Member
    12 is a great score - Congratulations!! That puts you in the top 1% of those that qualified to take the AIME, which is a small group to start with; I am sure that it will get notice. It is just one part of the application, but a very strong indicator. Good luck!!!

    How did you do on the AOIME?
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  • yearstogoyearstogo 833 replies30 threads Member
    squ1rrel wrote: »
    Many MIT applicants will have similar/higher AIME scores. Some people make MOP and still get rejected. Of course, a good AIME score will be a nice addition to your application, but it won't be game changing.

    Some will have same or higher, but not most. If you look at the numbers, there are not that many to begin with. Just looking at the AIME I for 11th graders, only 19 students made better than he did and only 32 made the same.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 2463 replies40 threads Senior Member
    squ1rrel wrote: »
    Many MIT applicants will have similar/higher AIME scores.

    With 19 higher and 32 identical scores in a pool of about 21,000 applications, “many” is quite a stretch, to say the least.

    It’s only one “other” component of an application, but will be a positive differentiator..
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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2468 replies37 threads Senior Member
    If you just dabble in math competition and achieve that score, it may make an impression along with your other academic accomplishments. However, if math competitions are your main activities, then the score won't impress.
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  • ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
    1NJParent wrote: »
    If you just dabble in math competition and achieve that score, it may make an impression along with your other academic accomplishments. However, if math competitions are your main activities, then the score won't impress.

    Yikes, really? Math contests are my "spike" =(
    yearstogo wrote: »
    12 is a great score - Congratulations!! That puts you in the top 1% of those that qualified to take the AIME, which is a small group to start with; I am sure that it will get notice. It is just one part of the application, but a very strong indicator. Good luck!!!

    How did you do on the AOIME?

    Same score.

    Also, will it be noted that I only missed USAMO by <5 points or will they not think about USAMO at all?
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  • hebegebehebegebe 2964 replies42 threads Senior Member
    edited June 26
    MIT and CalTech will realize that you came very close to USAMO. If they like the rest of your application, you have a better than typical chance. Say 30 percent at MIT, 40 at CalTech.

    Another school that takes AMC scores is CMU. You have a good shot there even for CS.
    edited June 26
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  • theloniusmonktheloniusmonk 3041 replies5 threads Senior Member
    I'm pretty sure Stanford and ivies ask for it as well.

    "If you just dabble in math competition and achieve that score, it may make an impression along with your other academic accomplishments. However, if math competitions are your main activities, then the score won't impress.

    What are you basing this on? Most if not all kids that get kind of score on the AIME have spent a lot of time on math competitions, like from elementary school, it will impress. The MIT/Cal Tech odds that hebegebe posted are pretty accurate.



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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2468 replies37 threads Senior Member
    ^Based on more than one conversation on similar topics with a person who worked on admission at one of these places. Academics certainly play a more important role at these places, but they look at the whole picture behind the numbers. One piece of that picture is the effort or time spent on a particular pursuit relative to the achievement in the area when comparing applicants.
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  • yearstogoyearstogo 833 replies30 threads Member
    I have a hard time believing that anyone will not give you serious consideration with a 12 on the AIME, that is a great score you should be very proud of...sure if there is nothing else you have done I could see it but the kids I have seen that do math competitions have quite a few other impressive activities.

    For many of the kids that are into math competitions, it is one of their only avenues to be around others that are academically geared. DS is a very good soccer player and has a great shot at being captain of his team if they play this year but he clearly enjoys the time with the kids that are into math competitions much more. He went to MathPath many years ago and had an amazing time and has tried to introduce others in our rural area to math competitions.

    Good luck!!
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  • hebegebehebegebe 2964 replies42 threads Senior Member
    edited June 27
    1NJParent wrote: »
    ^Based on more than one conversation on similar topics with a person who worked on admission at one of these places. Academics certainly play a more important role at these places, but they look at the whole picture behind the numbers. One piece of that picture is the effort or time spent on a particular pursuit relative to the achievement in the area when comparing applicants.
    Our local high school typically has 1 to 3 kids qualify for USAJMO or USAMO each year. Among the roughly dozen or so kids I know who made this, every one except one is at MIT, Harvard, or CalTech. Harvard didn’t ask for this on their application for 2020, but they recognize its value.

    Note that while some of these students had multiple HYPSM acceptances, others received only one acceptance during regular decision after being deferred early. And about that last kid who didn’t get in, well he was widely known as the “obnoxious kid”, and he ended up at CMU CS, which is still highly selective.

    My conclusion is that colleges value extreme math talent a great deal. The OP’s scores are just below USAMO qualification so the boost is less, but it is still significant.
    edited June 27
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  • theloniusmonktheloniusmonk 3041 replies5 threads Senior Member
    "One piece of that picture is the effort or time spent on a particular pursuit relative to the achievement in the area when comparing applicants."

    That makes very little sense, by definition you have to spend a lot of time on math competitions and science fairs because they're basically an EC and sometimes start in middle school. You can't just show up to an Olympiad, like the regular Olympics, you have to do a lot of work in the qualifying rounds.

    Like others said, why would you penalize academic awards (essay contests, science fairs) but not athletics, which is a huge time sink and work ethic is rewarded.
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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2468 replies37 threads Senior Member
    ^Of course, one has to advance through each round. However, for some of these places, one needs to show significant progress for the effort and time spent with each attempt. Everything is relative.
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  • ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
    edited June 28
    Will the boost be as great at other schools (i.e. not MIT/CalTech)? What about @ BS/MD programs?

    Also, should I apply as a math major? I'm not quite sure what I want to do yet.
    edited June 28
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  • ScaredSadSeniorScaredSadSenior 6 replies1 threads New Member
    Bump :pensive:
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  • MWolfMWolf 2783 replies14 threads Senior Member
    To summarize. If you have a strong application, these scores can help you stand out. If you have a borderline application, they can, perhaps, help you be considered. However, if your application is otherwise weak, they will likely not accept you based on these score alone.

    These type of awards have the strongest boost if you are looking to major in Math or in a math heavy discipline like engineering or physics. They will be good for every college which has holistic admissions and therefore considers achievements which are not part of your transcript. They will likely attract more attention at college which have strong math/engineering/physics programs, since these colleges tend to have AOs who are more familiar with these competitions. However, it is a very strong extracurricular achievement.

    Finally - only major in math if you love love love love love math. I mean, things like engaging in mathematics challenges or solving math problems in your spare time.
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  • Eeyore123Eeyore123 2087 replies25 threads Senior Member
    Math competitions/awards will not have anywhere near the impact on a BS/MD application as they do on a normal math heavy subject undergraduate application.
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