USABO AND IBO
Open exam registration starts: September 14, 2020
Student registration ends: December 4, 2021
USABO & Art of Problem Solving (AoPS) Student Registration Closes: December 11, 2021
Open exam competition: February 11, 2020
USABO is part of the major US high-school-level Olympiads. Other US Olympiads include USAMO (USA Math Olympiad), USAPhO (USA Physics Olympiad), USNCO (US National Chemistry Olympiad), and USACO (USA Computing Olympiad), and more
Each USAXO (this is the shorthand for all the major olympiads as they mainly differ in one letter depending on what subject they are) competition's job is to select Team USA to compete at the international olympiad counterpart. USABO is responsible for choosing Team USA for the IBO (International Bio Olympiad). Similarly, USNCO chooses Team USA for ICO (Chemistry) and USAPhO chooses Team USA for IPO (Physics).
Each USAXO has its own way of qualifying. For USABO there are three stages of testing before you can have the honor of being a Team USA member (a very very prestigious achievement that will practically guarantee you admission into top STEM schools like MIT and other Ivy League Schools).
Usually around over 10,000 students register for the Open Exam. The top 500 of the Open exam students move to the Semifinals stage. From there, 20 students are chosen to go to a 2-week-long intense training "summer camp" at the end of which they take a theoretical exam and a practical (meaning actual lab techniques etc) to compete for one of the four coveted spots on Team USA. The four chosen Team USA members will then fly internationally to compete in the IBO. Past international IBO host countries include Hungary, UK, Iran, Vietnam, etc.
Our club aims to not only prepare passionate students for this prestigious competition in a fun way, but to interest them in the field of biology for future careers or pathways as well.
For more information, visit:
Books to Study
Campbell and Reece's BIOLOGY (8th edition or higher preferred) is the official textbook for USABO, so make sure you read through this textbook!
8th Edition ISBN-13: 978-0805368444
9th Edition ISBN-13: 978-0321558237
10th Edition ISBN-13: 9780321775658
11th Edition ISBN-13: 978-0134093413
If you are interested, these textbooks focus on a specific topic are helpful as well!
Human Physiology by Sherwood
Gives an in-depth explanation of each of our body's systems.
Essential Cell Biology by Alberts
Explores cellular and molecular biology.
Plant Biology by Raven
The specifics of plant anatomy, physiology, structure, and function.
50 MCQ with one response per question
No penalty for guessing
Top 10% advance to semis
Part A: MCQ with one answer, Part B: MCQ with multiple answer, Part C: short answer or multiple T/F
No penalty for guessing
Top 50 receive an honor certificate
Top 20 advance to training camp and finals
Camp & Finals
All-expense paid 12-day trip to a top university
10 days of instruction and 2 days of testing
6-hour practical test (dissections, labs, hands-on data analysis)
Top 4 represent USA at IBO
All-expense paid 6-day trip to a country such as Japan, Hungary, and Brazil
The opening ceremony, theoretical exam, practical exam, closing ceremony
Top 10% gold, next 20% silver, next 30% bronze