Astronomy is an outstanding scientific subject that has inspired us humans for thousands of years: By looking into the sky and imagining the earth as a tiny boat in the depth of space we feel connected and curious about all the planets, stars, and galaxies out there. The International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition takes this fascination sparking subject and gives students the opportunity to challenge their astronomy and astrophysics knowledge in a friendly competition and - by participating - to learn more about this interesting subject and to extend their horizon.
Vision, Mission, and Values
The International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition has the aim to be accessible to all students from all countries regardless of their background, school, or institution. For that, the International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition uses today's technologies and the global connection through the internet to make this competition possible: All you need is a pen, paper, and an internet connection to participate!
In general, astronomy is a great motivation for students to get in touch with science. Our society is in need of capable scientists and engineers that develop, shape and maintain the innovations of the future. The initial motivation through scientific events and competitions can encourage students to a professional career as a researcher or engineer.
We have the aim to provide a sophisticated competition platform and to enable students, parents, and teachers to get involved in the process of shaping your future.
What makes IAAC unique?
There are other competitions besides IAAC that promote scientific education. However, the IAAC is unique and has many advantages due to many unique features:
- Internationality: The International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition is a global competition from the first round! All participants solve the same problems in every round: This enables a fair evaluation and international exchange.
- Online Submission: The competition uses the possibilities of the modern internet to give all students the opportunity to participate regardless of nation, region, school, or affiliation. Every student may participate on his own - there is no affiliation of your school or teacher to IAAC required to participate in this competition.
- Research Problems: The pre-final round includes two research problem types that only exists in the IAAC competition: It requires participants to get in touch with real scientific research papers and learn about recent scientific results in order to solve the problems. They encourage students for more advanced science and give them insights into actual research material.
- Teacher Support and Online Tools: We supply teachers and schools with further materials as well as an online teacher interface that allows teachers to better make use of IAAC problems in class. We also generate performance reports to each individual student.
- IAAC Ambassador Program: The IAAC ambassador program enables motivated students and supportive mentors to inspire youths for astronomy and astrophysics and to encourage them to participate in this competition. Since IAAC is an international competition, the ambassador program helps the coordinators of IAAC to better connect with the local students.
Organization and Funding
The International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition takes place annually on an international level and was organized in 2019 for the first time. The organizing team is constantly evolving, with most team members being based in Germany. The idea formed after the success of the International Youth Math Challenge to which the International Astronomy and Astrophysics Competition has close relations, with the aim to establish a similar online competition addressing the disciplines of astronomy and astrophysics. Such an international competition has several expenses, including human resources, technical infrastructure, materials, and much more: The costs are covered by sponsors and partners as well as through the participants and schools via the pre-final registration costs. As this online competition is new, we are constantly improving the opportunity and adding new features every year.