Fostering a love of mathematical thinking

We educate young people through a number of outreach programs designed to awaken their interest in the mathematical sciences. We have programs designed for K-12 students, as well as research opportunities for undergraduates.

Bloomington Math Circle

We operate the Bloomington Math Circle for area schoolchildren who enjoy mathematics, introducing them to fun math topics not typically taught in elementary and middle schools. We talk about interesting topics in a way that makes the concepts understandable to young people: symbolic logic, modular arithmetic, regular polyhedra, inequalities, the fourth dimension, approximating square roots, and different sizes of infinity. The circle runs for nine weeks each semester and meets one day a week for about an hour.

Science Fest

Our department participates in Science Fest, the annual day of hands-on educational science fun at Indiana University Bloomington. 

Visit the Science Fest website

American Mathematics Competition exams

Each year, we host the American Mathematics Competition exams (AMC). The AMC 8 takes place in November and is typically taken by children in grades 6-8. (LINK)

Students with a passion for problem-solving who are in grade 10 or below and under 17.5 years of age on the day of the contest can take the AMC 10. Students in grade 12 or below and under 19.5 years of age on the day of the contest can take the AMC 12. The AMC 10/12 takes place in February. (LINK)

If you do well on the AMC, your reward is the invitation to take another exam—the American Invitational Mathematics Examination. The AIME is a 15-question 3-hour test given since 1983 to those who rank in the top 5% on the AMC 12 high school mathematics contest and those who rank in the top 2.5% on the AMC 10.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates

For over four decades, our Mathematics department has offered experiences in Mathematics research to students from all over the country. During the summer, a select group of undergraduates participate in research projects with individual faculty mentors on a wide variety of topics. The National Science Foundation supports the program via a Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) grant.

Learn about REU