How to succeed in the IBO? Success story 6.

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On his second read-through of Campbell and Reece’s Biology, 18-year-old Jason Wu wrote the words he didn’t know into his spiral-bound notebook. By the fifth read-through, he had narrowed his focus to key charts and figures, and by the time he packed the 1,312-page tome into his Argentina-bound suitcase in July, the recent St. Louis, Mo., high school graduate pretty …

What does it mean to take part in the IBO? Story 5.

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  Rebecca Shi is a freshman at MIT, where she hopes to major in biology or biological engineering. She fences foil on the fencing team, and enjoys birdwatching and playing board games in her spare time. When I started high school, I found not just a new maze of hallways and a range of new classes, but also an exciting array …

What does it mean to take part in the IBO? Story 4.

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An interview with Jorge Tarancón who won a bronze medal in the IBO 2016. Who are you? Where are you from? I‘m Jorge Tarancón from Spain, concretelly a small village (Pamplona) near France. I‘ve just finished high school and i passed in june the university exam in order to enter at university, so in september i will start studying Biotechnology in …

What does it mean to participate in the IBO? Story 3.

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Lei Sun went to IBO 2006 in Argentina from Sweden and won a silver. Below she shares her story. I went to Argentina in 2006. The overall arrangement was so bad that it was still brought up many years later. Then again one can say it set a good example of cautionary tale so it’s unlikely to be as bad …

What does it mean to participate in the IBO? Story 2.

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Kay Aull was a participant in the IBO 2003 and 2004. He shares his experience below. I was in the IBO twice representing the USA, in 2003 (Belarus) and 2004 (Australia). I won silver the first time and gold the second. Belarus was…surreal. I was half-convinced I’d fallen asleep on my Campbell and was dreaming the whole thing. Australia was …

What does it mean to participate in the IBO? Story 1.

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Jelle Zijlstra, won bronze in 2008 and silver in 2009 IBO. He shares his experience in the IBO below. I was in the IBO twice representing the Netherlands, in 2008 (Mumbai, India) and 2009 (Tsukuba, Japan). I won bronze the first time and silver the second. I had a great time at both Olympiads, but the experience was very different. …

Basic Skills for the Practical Part of the IBO

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The official website of the International Biology Olympiad (IBO) released an updated guide to the IBO. You can access it here. The IBO practical examination should concentrate on the evaluation of competitors for their ability to solve given biological problems using the following skills. In the IBO tasks the names of organisms will be the national names (no description) together …

Model organisms for research

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Below you will find some important information about organisms used in research. The Bacterium Escherichia coli The Fruit Fly Drosophila melanogaster The Nematode Worm Caenorhabditis elegans The Plant Arabidopsis thaliana  The Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae Source: PIERCE, B. A. (2012). Genetics: a conceptual approach. New York, W.H. Freeman.

Concepts of Biology

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Are you looking a good review of biology concepts to prepare for the USA Biology Olympiad (USABO), International Biology Olympiad (IBO), Science Bowl or any other biology competition or exam, download a very useful and clear biology book which outlines the general principles and describes key concepts. Read the book here. Download for free at

Zatobowl simulator

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Zatobowl “Science Bowl Simulator” provides thousands of questions for National Science Bowl (NSB), National Ocean Science Bowl (NOSB) and other national and international science quiz competitions. Zatobowl features include: Online Multi-Player System: Compete online with friends and others around the world in real time. Buzzer Practice: with audio questions, a one click buzzer and sub-second response timing. Peruse Questions : …

Science Bowl book list

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Here is a useful list of books that will help you prepare for all sections of the Science Bowl. BIOLOGY 1. The Living Science, Miller-Levine 2. Human Biology, Chiras 3. Biology-The Web of Life, Strauss Lisowski 4. Biology, Campbell and Reece 5. How to Prepare for The Biology Olympiad and Science Competitions, Martyna Petrulyte   PHYSICS 1. Contemporary College Physics, …

Science Bowl competition

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The Science Bowl competition is a high school and middle school science knowledge competition using a quiz bowl format held in the United States. A buzzer system similar to those seen on popular television game shows is used to signal an answer. Teachers and coaches frequently ask how to best prepare their students for the Science Bowl competition.  There are …

Freaked out about upcoming biology olympiad?

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January and February are the most important months for olympiad participants as in many countries first rounds take place during these months. If you did not finish to read Campbell and it is only several weeks before biology olympiad, try to calm down and do not overdo too much because you need fresh mind and good eyes for the day …


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Life table and survivorship curves are important part of olympiads. Please find this useful handout below. Big thanks to Donovan pages 311 EE.pdf.

Revision notes for olympiad

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Here you will find another great set of notes for quick revision before olympiad. Big thanks to:

Ecological niches

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An ecological niche is the role and position a species has in its environment; how it meets its needs for food and shelter, how it survives, and how it reproduces. A species’ niche includes all of its interactions with the biotic and abiotic factors of its environment. Biological Niches Big thanks to

European DNA Day Essay Contest 2016

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The structure of the DNA double helix was unraveled over sixty years ago! DNA Day, April 25, is now commemorated internationally as a celebration of Genetics and its promises. For the eighth year, the European Society of Human Genetics (ESHG), will be sponsoring a DNA Day Essay contest in European high schools. Once again we will partner with the American …

ASHG 2016 DNA Day Essay Contest Now Open!

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National DNA Day commemorates the completion of the Human Genome Project in April 2003 and the discovery of the double helix of DNA in 1953. This year’s DNA Day is on Monday, April 25, 2016. Celebrate by participating in the American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) the 11th Annual DNA Day Essay Contest! This contest is open to students in …

2015 ISEC Competition

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All high school students and international equivalents are invited to submit an essay about the recent effects and future promises of science in our society. Write about particular discoveries, events, or persons from science in current events or present a more general account of the changes and developments. Each essay must be accompanied by a statement of acknowledged validity by a teacher in the field …

What Can Your Genes Can Do?

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Are you in grades 9-12? Do you love to watch YouTube Videos? Or make your own? Then show the world what your genes can do!Just submit a 3-5 minute video describing any current application of genetics (such as ancestry testing, genetic testing for disease risk, production of biofuels, etc.) and explain how it works. This application should be realistic and …