Articles, Resources & Links

Below you will find a list of MCM/ICM articles that cover topics such as:

  • Contest preparation
  • Contest history
  • Contest experiences

MCM-ICM: Procedures and Tips for a Great Experience
The purpose of this article is to assist and guide students and advisors participating in The Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM) and The Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling (ICM). In the article, COMAP, provides information about the administration of the contests, as well as tips to ensure your contest experience is smooth, satisfying, and enjoyable.

Teaching Modeling and Advising a Team
Gary Olson, Dept. of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, University of Colorado Denver
Daniel Teague, North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics

Taken from The UMAP Journal 37.2

A Short History of the Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling
Chris Arney, ICM Director, U.S. Military Academy

Taken from the book: The Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling: Culturing Interdisciplinary Problem Solving

Problems Worth Solving: Mathematical Modeling Contests and Education
2015 NCTM Annual Meeting & Exposition, Solomon Garfunkel, COMAP Inc.

Background and History of the MCM

Bernard (Ben) A. Fusaro, Florida State University

Go with What You Know
W. Garrett Mitchener, Duke University

A Junior College in the First MCM
Alice Williams, James Madison University

The MCM Experience at the University of Alaska Fairbanks
J.P. Lambert, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Experiencing the MCM at Northcentral Technical College
Robert J. Henning, Northcentral Technical College

Ability, Training, Preparation
Anne M. Dougherty, University of Colorado

Making Math Exciting
James Allen Morrow, University of Washington

The Voice of Experience
COMAP Inc., UMAP Tools for Teaching 1994

Ten Years of MCM: Reflections of a Coach
Thomas O’Neil, California Polytechnic State University

20 Years of Good Advice
COMAP Inc., The MCM at 21

Below you will find a list of COMAP materials that we think could be useful in your contest preparation.


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Mathematical Modeling for the MCM/ICM Contests Volume 1

Mathematical Modeling for the MCM/ICM Contests Volume 1 is an exposition of the ideas, background knowledge, and modeling methodologies for solving the problems in the 2014 MCM/ICM contests. Problem A asks how to design rules to increase traffic throughput, Problem B asks how to rank the top coaches of a popular sport, and Problem C asks how to use networks to measure influence and impact.

This volume also presents a brief history of the MCM/ICM contests, offers ideas to help students prepare for the MCM/ICM contests, presents general modeling framework and methodologies, describes the judging procedure of the MCM/ICM papers, explains how to write attractive MCM/ICM papers, and presents a sample scheduling of tasks during the contest. A number of exercise problems are included to help students understand the materials presented in the book.  Learn More

The Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling: Culturing Interdisciplinary Problem Solving

The Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling (ICM) completed its 16th contest in 2014 with 20,000 students having participated in the annual four-day contest since its inception. This volume presents the interesting history of the ICM contest, which includes descriptions of the 16 problems, listings and summaries of outstanding teams, demographics of contestants and their schools, and reflections and helpful advice articles by participants, advisors, judges, and directors. Articles describe how to prepare teams and how to develop modeling curricula along with discussions on the current interdisciplinary academic environment and related literature. The volume provides an insightful look at trends in educating future interdisciplinary modelers and problem solvers.  Learn More

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Below we have gathered together some websites that we hope you find useful in your contest preparation. If you would like to add your schools MCM/ICM contest webpage email us at

University of Washington
Sample MCM/ICM papers from the University of Washington

The Quest of the MCM Conquering the Math Contest in Modeling
By Brian Camley, Pascal Getreuer, and Bradley Klingenberg

The Mathematical Contest in Modeling at the University of Puget Sound
Given that the Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM) held its first competition in 1984, the University of Puget Sound has a "long" tradition of participation.

SIAM Award in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling
The SIAM Award in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM), established in 1988, is awarded to two of the teams judged "Outstanding" in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM), administered annually by the Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications (COMAP). One winning team is chosen for each of the two problems (continuous and discrete) posed in the MCM.