B35DE2DF-EB89-4B60-932A-35B0AEC4A6C3 Created with sketchtool. Aussies Killing It at the International Science Olympiads

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  Last updated October 23, 2017 at 9:01 am

Always wanted to represent your country at the Olympics but your idea of the 100m sprint involves a bus and running late? Or you have as much coordination as a spider after an introduction to a can of bug spray?

The dream doesn’t have to die – you could have a chance in the International Science Olympiads. If your brain is bigger than your brawn, you could be bringing home the Gold for Australia – just like YiJie Neo, a year 12 student from Melbourne, recently did.

L to R: Jemima Jeffree, Joshua Lee, Chen Zhou and YiJie Neo. Jemima was the youngest silver medallist on Australia’s 2017 International Science Olympiads team

Just like the sporting Olympics, entrants compete in specialised events – Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science and Physics – and have to win regional and national events in order to qualify for the international competition.

The results

Australia do pretty darn well in all of them. Across the board for 2017 we took out ten Bronze, six Silver, and an awesome Gold medal in Earth Sciences. Among that mix, it included Australia’s first Silver Physics medal won by a female, Nishka Tapaswi from NSW.

“This is an outstanding achievement for Australia. We are delighted that our female Science Olympians raised the bar in a field that has too few female representatives,” says Ruth Carr, Executive Director of Australian Science Innovations.

“Our impressive medal haul this year is testament to our Science Olympians’ hard work and the program’s ability to not only nurture Australia’s top science students’ passion and talent for science, but also to break down gender stereotypes in science-related fields,” says Carr.

Unlike the sporting Olympics, the specialised events are held in different countries. This year, it was held in the UK (Biology), Thailand (Chemistry), France (Earth Science) and Indonesia (Physics). The International Physics Olympiad will be held in Adelaide, South Australia in 2019.

If you’re interested in getting your science on and competing, and are in Year 10 or 11, you can find out more information here: https://www.asi.edu.au/

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About the Author

Hilary Jones
Hilary is the Contributing Editor for Education at Australia's Science Channel and the Education Specialist. She has a wide ranging background in a variety of Educational settings both in Australia and the UK, and a deep love for biology, Star Wars and ultra dark chocolate. Not necessarily together - although creating an accurate X-Wing out of 90% cocoa solids chocolate would be a dream come true (please send the plans if you have them).


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