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Information and Details

The Awards Reception for the David Essner Mathematics Competition XXXVII, held in honor of the top student performances, will take place at 7pm, Tuesday November 14, 2017 at the Shalala Ballroom East, Shalala Student Center at the University of Miami, 1330 Miller Dr. The top five students will receive plaques and cash awards, and all invited students will receive a certificate and math book award. 


Each winner with two guests and their supervisor (or substitute) with one guest are invited to attend.  Winning students and their supervisors should RSVP by November 9 to or to 

For directions and parking information, please visit

Important Dates

Sept 29, 2017: Deadline for list of Participating Students
October 14, 2017: Essner Competition
November 14, 2017: Awards Ceremony

The Competition

The Competition is a 3 hour written exam consisting of a handful of problems whose solutions require creative mathematical thought. Solutions are evaluated on clarity of presentation and logical arguments as well as correctness of the final answer. A correct answer without coherent justification may receive a low evaluation.

The exam does not require calculus and may be solved using ideas that an honors student with experience in high school honors algebra and pre-calculus should have encountered. Refer to the Final Exams in the Past Exams link above for examples. The use of calculators or other such assistance tools is not permitted.


The competition is open to all secondary schools, public and private, in Miami-Dade County. Each participating school must select a Supervisor (such as a mathematics teacher) who determines the participating students from their school, and acts as a liason between these participating students and the Competition Administrators.

A student who wishes to participate must obtain approval of their school's supervisor.

Beginning with Competition XXXV, no student may participate in more than 4 competitions.

Instructions for Supervisors

Determine the participating students from their school.

We recommend a limit of 5 participating students per school. In unusual situations the supervisor may be permitted to send up to 5 additional students.

The determination of the participating students is at the Supervisor's discretion. One possibility is to administer a past exam or a collection of problems from an assortment of past exams as a preliminary exam. Students who are both interested in the kinds of problems on the previous final exams and able to craft solutions to several of these are perhaps more likely to perform well on the upcoming competition.

Inform the Competition Administrators of the participating students.

By September 29, 2017, email the list of names of your school's participating students to the Competition Administrators. (

The Essner Competition Administrators

Dr. Paul McDougle, Dr. Subramanian Ramakrishnan, Dr. Kenneth Baker, and Dr. Morgan Brown

Contact Information

The David Essner Mathematics Competition 
Department of Mathematics, University of Miami 
1365 Memorial Drive, Ungar 515 
Coral Gables, FL 33146