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Australian Science Olympiad Summer School

What is the Australian Science Olympiads Summer School?

The Australian Science Olympiads Summer School is a two week residential science program for around 100 secondary school students who are invited to attend based on their performance in the Australian Science Olympiad Exams.

Held during the January school holidays at the Australian National University in Canberra, the summer school is an opportunity for talented students to work with others who are passionate about science.

The work schedule is intense and covers the equivalent of first-year university studies in biology, chemistry, Earth and environmental science or physics. It’s a great head start to further studies and careers in science.

High-achieving students at the summer school, and those who perform well in final selection exams, earn a spot on the Australian Science Olympiads team and go on to compete at the International Science Olympiads – the Olympic Games for science students.

Who can take part?

Eligible students who perform exceptionally well in the Australian Science Olympiad Exams are invited to attend the summer school. There is a maximum of 24 places per discipline available. Eligible students are contacted directly by our staff and schools are notified shortly after.  Learn more about the eligibility requirements. 


The cost for each student is $2,000. This fee contributes to the training program, meals, accommodation, transfers and return flights from the students’ closest capital city. The same fee applies to all students regardless of where they live. The fees help cover much more than transport and accommodation costs – for example, meals, payments to teaching staff and use of teaching facilities. The fee is discounted thanks to generous support of the Australian Government Department of Education and Training through the Mathematics and Science Participation Program.

We are committed to ensuring equity of access to our programs, and will provide support to students who wish to seek sponsors to make a contribution towards their fee. Where a student demonstrates financial hardship, we will work with them and their family to enable the student to attend the summer school.

What others have said about the Summer School

“The Olympiad program literally changed the course of our son’s life. Until then he cruised through school without a great deal of motivation or desire to push the limits. Fortunately, his teachers at high school insisted that he sit the Olympiad exam. Brilliant kids need programs like the Olympiads to extend and challenge their minds, to let them see the possibilities out there. Connecting with teachers and like-minded students at the summer school helped our son discover himself.” 

– Parent of Australian Science Olympiads summer school participant

“Never have I been this extended in my school studies. It’s been very rewarding. It was all quite challenging. The best things were the people and the friendships I made.”

– Australian Science Olympiads summer school participant

“[It] was definitely the best thing I have ever done and I feel honoured to have met some of the most amazing people I will ever meet, so thank you so much for the opportunity.”

– Australian Science Olympiads summer school participant

How to participate

The first step is to register for an Australian Science Olympiad Exams in Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental Science and/or Physics.  Students must register for the Australian Science Olympiad Exams through their school. Students who would like to take part should talk with their science teacher.

For more information see our frequently asked questions (FAQs).

2018 summer school dates

Date Event
Thursday 5 January Biology, Chemistry, Earth & environmental science and Physics students arrive
Friday 6 January Biology, Chemistry, Earth & environmental science and Physics teaching begins
Saturday 14 January Student free day
Saturday 21 January All students depart