Rules and Scoring
The test consists of 80 questions at the elementary and junior high levels (the number is not specified for the high school level but usually consists of 70 questions), which must be completed in only 30 minutes. There is no intermediate time signal given; at the end of 30 minutes the students must immediately stop calculator processing, but they are allowed to write one final answer on the problem being worked at the stop signal.
Students are allowed to bring up to two calculators for use in the contest, provided the following criteria are met for both calculators:
- The calculators must be commercially available models (models which were once available, but later discontinued, are still eligible).
- The calculators must be hand-held, operate silently, and be able to operate without requiring external power (rechargeable batteries are permitted but they must be charged prior to competition).
- All memory must be cleared prior to the contest (except for factory-installed memory; however, the machines must be calculators and not hand-held computers).
In order for a question to be scored as correct it must be answered to the third significant digit with allowable error in the third digit of plus or minus one, except for integer, dollar sign, and certain stated problems requiring least significant digits.
- For integer problems, in order for the question to be scored as correct the exact answer must be provided (there is no allowable error) and the answer must be in integer format (decimal points and scientific notation are not allowed and will be scored as incorrect).
- For dollar sign problems, in order for the question to be scored as correct the question must be answered to the nearest cent with allowable error of plus or minus one cent and decimal points and cents must be entered.
- For stated problems using inexact numbers, in order for the question to be scored as correct, use of the method of least significant digits is required, with allowable error of plus or minus one in the last significant digit.
Five points are awarded for each correct answer while four points are deducted for each wrong or skipped answer. However, questions not answered beyond the last attempted answer (defined as any problem where a mark or erasure exists in the answer blank for that problem) are not scored. In addition, at the high school level only, 3 points are given on stated problems involving inexact numbers that are answered correctly but with the incorrect number of significant digits, provided at least two significant digits are indicated and the more precise answer rounds exactly to the lesser precise answer.
Read more about this topic: Calculator Applications (UIL)
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