You are here

American Mathematics Contest 12 - AMC 12

Skip Navigation

Mathematical Association of America -- American Mathematics Competitions

AMC 12

American Mathematics Contest 12

The AMC 12 is a 25 question, 75 minute multiple choice examination in secondary school mathematics containing problems which can be understood and solved with pre-calculus concepts. Calculators are not allowed starting in 2008. For the school year there will be two dates on which the contest may be taken: AMC 12A on , , , and AMC 12B on , , .

Click here to jump to the registration information.


The main purpose of the AMC 12 is to spur interest in mathematics and to develop talent through solving challenging problems in a timed multiple-choice format. What happens before and after the AMC 12 can have lasting educational value. Talents will be enhanced if one practices beforehand, by working through previous examinations, by participating in math leagues and, most importantly, by studying mathematics more intensely than one normally does in high school.


Although the excitement of testing one's mettle is naturally directed toward the contest itself, it is what happens before and after the contests which can have lasting educational value. Talents are enhanced with practice beforehand. This might be done by working through previous examinations, by participating in math leagues and, most importantly, by studying mathematics more intensely than one normally does in high school. Learning will take place if students singly, jointly and, especially with their teachers, strive to solve those examination problems they did not see how to solve in the allotted time as well as to understand the solutions to those problems that they did not solve correctly. Occasionally, problems are chosen so that certain subtle but significant confusions, as well as some common computational errors, will be identified by the wrong answers listed. These principles and confusions are highlighted in the carefully prepared solutions manual.


Since the AMC 10/12 covers such a broad spectrum of knowledge and ability there is a wide range of scores. The National Honor Roll cut off score for the AMC 12, 100 out of 150 possible points, is typically attained or surpassed by about 5% of all participants. For many students and schools only relative scores are significant, and so lists of top individual and team scores on regional and local levels are compiled. These regional lists and information on score distributions appear in the yearly summary sent to all participating schools. The more valuable comparison students can make is between their own level of achievement and their levels in previous years. In particular, they are encouraged to begin taking the contests early in their mathematics studies and to look back with pride each year on how they have learned to answer questions that they could not have answered previously.

A special purpose of the AMC 12 is to help identify those few students with truly exceptional mathematics talent. Students who are among the very best deserve some indication of how they stand relative to other students in the country and around the world . The AMC 12 is one in a series of examinations (followed in the United States by the American Invitational Examination and the USA Mathematical Olympiad) that culminate in participation in the International Mathematical Olympiad, the most prestigious and difficult secondary mathematics examination in the world.

The AMC 10/12 is not an end in itself. Outstanding performance on it is neither necessary nor sufficient for becoming an outstanding mathematician. The ability to gain insights and do computations quickly is wonderful talent, but many eminent mathematicians are not quick in this way. Also, the multiple-choice format (necessary for the prompt scoring of over 300,000 examinations) benefits those who are shrewd at eliminating wrong answers and guessing, but this is not particularly a mathematical talent. In short, students who do not receive nationally recognized scores should not shrink from pursuing mathematics further, and those who do receive such high scores should not think that they have forever proved their mathematical merit. This contest, and all other mathematical competitions, remains but one means for furthering mathematical development.


The AMC 10/12 Informational Brochure (2013 version) will provide a simple overview of these two contests. Registration may be completed by mailing either (pdf versions) A Registration Form (for , ) or B Registration Form (for the alternate date of , ) available at this web site. Fees for each school wishing to register are as follows

Registration & Standard Shipping, contest A only through
Registration & Express Shipping
Registration & Expedited Shipping - Contest A
- Contest B       

Exams (including student answer forms) are sold in Bundles of 10. AMC 12 Contests are per bundle. The minimum charge to participate in the AMC 12 is (including the registration fee with standard shipping) and would enable 10 students to participate. One school can participate in both the AMC 10 and AMC 12 contests. The school would pay one registration fee, and add one bundle of AMC 10 contests and one bundle of AMC 12 contests. The cost would be $78 (including the registration fee with standard shipping for the A date) and would enable 20 students to participate. A student can not take both the 10 contest and the 12 contest on the same date. There are some overlapping problems on the contests given on the same day (A or B).

Late Registrations (10/12 A or B registrations after January 14 ) will be accepted via FAX 402-472-6087. We accept Visa & MasterCard, or we require a Purchase Order # for billed orders. If a Purchase Order is not appropriate, we will require a "Letter of Intent to Pay" which can be faxed to you. This letter can be used either if you intend to send a check or if you want to be billed without a Purchase Order. For Frequently Asked Questions about the new tests, please check out our FAQ page.  

This year we have Web registration available at:

Please submit your registration as soon as possible. Early registration will reduce your cost, provide you with ample time to read the Teachers' Manual and complete all pre-examination activities.

If your school chooses not to participate, there is still the possibility of taking the contest at a local college or university. MAA affiliates across the country offer the AMC 10/12 B contest on the B contest date. For more information please check the AMC 10/12 Sites at Institutions of Higher Learning page.

Brief History

The members of the Committee on the American Mathematics Competitions (CAMC) are dedicated to the goal of strengthening the mathematical capabilities of our nation's youth. The CAMC believes that one way to meet this goal is to identify, recognize and reward excellence in mathematics through a series of national contests called the American Mathematics Competitions. The AMC include: the American Mathematics Contest 8 (AMC 8) (formerly the American Junior High School Mathematics Examination) for students in grades 8 and below, begun in 1985; the American Mathematics Contest 10 (AMC 10), for students in grades 10 and below, begun in 2000; the American Mathematics Contest 12 (AMC 12) (formerly the American High School Mathematics Examination) for students in grades 12 and below, begun in 1950; the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME), begun in 1983; and the USA Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO), begun in 1972.

Frequently Asked Questions regarding the AMC 12

Please visit our FAQ page.