[BIO Logo] The British Informatics Olympiad is
the computing competition for schools and colleges.
We are proud to present BIO 2006, sponsored by Lionhead Studios.
Sponsored by Lionhead Studios
The 2006 British Informatics Olympiad

31 January, 2006

The British Informatics Olympiad (BIO) is an annual competition in computer programming for secondary schools and sixth form colleges. This year's competition is due to begin soon and we would like to give you advance notice, as well as the opportunity for early registration.

The BIO tests students' ability to solve problems against the clock and provides valuable experience as well as being enjoyable and challenging. It is open to all students who are under 19 and in full time pre-university education. Students do not need to be studying computer science to enter the competition; many of our top students in the past have been self-taught.

Entry into the competition is free thanks to the generous sponsorship of Lionhead Studios (widely regarded as the leading videogames developer in the UK, in an industry where the UK leads the world), and Trinity College, Cambridge.

The main part of the BIO is a three-hour paper, set and marked in school, with programming tasks (to be solved on any computer and in any language), supplemented by short written questions. We aim to set a paper that will allow those with a little programming experience to solve at least one question, whilst differentiating between the most able contestants. A detailed mark scheme will be provided to enable you to mark the papers rapidly while requiring no specialist knowledge.

The top 15 contestants will be invited to the final, which will be held at Trinity College at the start of April. The top four finalists will win an expenses-paid trip to Mexico in August, to represent Great Britain at the 2006 International Olympiad in Informatics.

If you want your school or college to enter this year, please fill in application form on our website, with an estimate of the number of students who might take part. The deadline for receipt of completed application forms is 6 March.

If you register early, we will e-mail the 2006 BIO paper to you before 13 February. If you register after this date, the paper will be sent within three days of us receiving your entry. You can hold the BIO any day until 10 March 2006. The closing deadline for the return of marks, for students to be considered for the final, is 13 March.

Further information, including past/sample papers and mark schemes, can be found on our website: http://www.olympiad.org.uk. We have moved servers in the past year so it may be necessary to update old browser bookmarks. If you have any further enquires please do not hesitate to contact me directly, by email (Richard Forster) or telephone (07803 044741).

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours faithfully,
Richard Forster, Director
British Informatics Olympiad

The 2006 British Informatics Olympiad