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Purple Comet! Math Meet
Supervisor Instructions

Purple Comet! Math Meet
Supervisor Instructions

PURPLE COMET! MATH MEET - INSTRUCTIONS TO ADULT SUPERVISORS

All teams competing in the Purple Comet! On-line Team Mathematics Meet must have an adult supervisor (over the age of 20). One adult may supervise more than one team. Indeed, some supervisors have registered 30 or more teams. Each supervisor must register at the contest website. After a supervisor is registered, the supervisor may register as many teams as desired. If you register a team, and that team does not end up participating in the contest, please delete that team from your list of teams.

BEFORE THE COMPETITION

Each supervisor will receive a login number and a password sent to them at their e-mail address. Since the Purple Comet! Math Meet will take place over a 244-hour period, when it is time for a team to begin the competition, the team's supervisor will need to use the supervisor login number and password to log onto the contest website to start the teams' contest clock. The team will be able to log onto the contest website before the supervisor starts the team's contest clock, but it will not be able to see the screen containing the contest problems and answer boxes until the clock is started. The supervisor's login number and password are different from each team's login number and password. Team login numbers and passwords are used by each team to access the competition problems and submit solutions to the competition website.

The supervisor should review the rules of the competition with each team prior to the start of the competition so that time is not wasted reviewing the rules during the competition. Rules of the competition are posted on the competition website.

The supervisor should tell participating students about the format of the problems they will see in the competition. The Middle School contest will consist of 20 problems to be solved in 60 minutes. The High School contest will consist of 30 problems to be solved in 90 minutes. Each problem has a solution which can be represented as a nonnegative integer (whole number). Some mathematics problems have solutions which are not integers because they include fractions, square roots, or other more complicated expressions. When a contest problem has an answer involving one of these expressions, the problem includes instructions explaining how to form an answer which is a nonnegative integer. Please instruct your students how to handle these special cases because it will help them understand how to code their answers. See instructive examples by clicking here.

No team will be able to begin the competition until their supervisor logs in and indicates that the team is starting. Team members will not be able to log onto the contest website and participate in the competition until their supervisor indicates that the team is starting the competition. An adult who supervises more than one team will be able to start each of their teams independently so that different teams will be able to begin the competition at different times.

After a team's supervisor has indicated that the team is starting the competition, the team will be able to log onto the contest website and begin the competition. They will be able to view a list of the contest problems on the screen. In addition, the supervisor will be able to download a PDF version of the contest problems which can be printed and distributed to team members. In fact, supervisors can print copies of the contest problems before their teams begin the competition so that the copies are ready for distribution to the teams as soon as they begin the competition. Plan to collect all copies of the problems when a team is done competing so that the problems are not in circulation until after the end of the competition. PDF versions of the contest problems will be available in several languages.

The Purple Comet! Math Meet will distribute certificates of award or certificates of participation to all students who participate in our meet. These certificates will be made available to supervisors in PDF format when the final results of the contest are announced. Supervisors are encouraged to enter students' names and school names carefully since we will use those entries to prepare the certificates.

DURING THE COMPETITION

We rely on the adult supervisors to maintain the integrity of our mathematics meet by ensuring that teams obey the rules of the competition.

When there is more than one team competing at the same site at the same time, we require that each team use a different computer to access the competition website. This is vital since our website will continuously display answers to contest problems that a team has already submitted.

Our contest is being offered over a 244-hour period from 00:00 (midnight) UTC Tuesday, April 18, 2017 through 04:00 AM UTC Friday, April 28, 2017 in order to make it easy for teams to schedule the best time for them to participate. On the other hand, it would be best if all teams from the same school complete their competition in as short a time interval as convenient, perhaps all competing during the same day. This will reduce the chance that information about competition problems will be transmitted from a team which completes the competition to a team which has not yet begun the competition.

The supervisor's login screen will indicate the start time of each team. The supervisor will be able to monitor how much time each team has remaining in the competition. Teams are invited to submit solutions to their problems frequently, ensuring that all of the problems they solve will be counted. Each time a team submits their problems, they will be given an approximate amount of time left on their competition clock. Teams will also be able to query our website to find out how much time remains for their competition. Our website will continue to accept submissions from each team even after their competition clock has run out. Only the solutions submitted before the clock has run out will be counted in the team's score unless the supervisor petitions to have the team be granted more time due to some technical difficulty which prevented the team from being able to compete fairly. For example, if a team is delayed in their receiving a copy of the competition problems due to an Internet connection problem, or a team's work is interrupted by a school fire drill, then the supervisor can inform the contest coordinators of this difficulty, and the contest coordinators can, at their discretion, consider some of the later submissions of the team. Contest judges, at their discretion, may accept solutions submitted by any team after their team clock has run out. This could include accepting incorrect answers submitted after the clock has expired which replace correct answers which were submitted before the clock expired.

During the competition a supervisor MAY:

  • keep each team informed about how much time is remaining for their competition.
  • supply team members with pencils, paper, copies of the competition problems, or food.
  • remind team members about the rules of the competition.
  • assist teams with problems which may arise due to technical computer hardware, software, or communication problems.

During the competition a supervisor MAY NOT:

  • discuss any of the competition problems with team members.
  • enter or submit answers to the competition website for a team.
  • suggest reference books or other reference materials to a team.
  • write or run computer programs which aid students with the understanding or solving of competition problems.

AFTER THE COMPETITION

Adult supervisors are asked to make clear to students that to ensure the integrity of the contest students should not communicate with anyone outside of their own team about the contest problems until the completion of the entire competition at 04:00 AM UTC Friday, April 28, 2017. Answers for competition problems will be posted on the competition website at about 6:00 PM UTC on Friday April 28, 2017. Results of the competition will be posted on the competition website at about 5:00 PM UTC on Monday May 1, 2017.

Starting at the time the final results are posted, supervisors will be able to download printable certificates of award and certificates of participation for all team members.

More Information

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Last updated: 1 February 2016.