The NZIC contest series, run by the New Zealand Olympiad in Informatics, will be held again in 2017. There will be 3 regular rounds held throughout the year. The difficulty ranges from entry-level problems to more challenging problems. To practice, sign up at The contest is held on the train site, and the problems are of a similar format.

The contest is open to all students currently enrolled in a secondary school (or intermediate) in New Zealand (students from year 7-13). There will be a scoreboard for individuals, and one for schools.


For 2017, we’re making a couple of changes to the competition. Firstly, we’re removing the supervision requirement. This is to lower the barrier to entry and encourage more students to take part. Cheating will result in disqualification, and really doesn’t help you to learn about Informatics either.

Secondly, we are only running three rounds of the competition. This is so that we can focus more on creating balanced contests with good test data, and because many students are very busy towards the end of the year.

Thirdly, we’re trying to tailor the problems and problem statements towards more of a range of students. In each contest there should be a problem that is approachable to a student who has just learned Python in school, as well as a problem that is difficult for the most advanced students. We hope that contest discussions can help students work towards solving more problems over the year.


The dates for the three rounds will be as follows:

  • Round One: Monday 3rd April - Sunday 9th April
  • Round Two: Monday 26th June - Sunday 2nd July
  • Round Three: Monday 14th August - Sunday 20th August

Students may log in and start the competition at any point between these dates. Once a student has begun the competition they have three hours to view the problems and submit solutions.

If you’re at a school with multiple students wanting to participate you might want to arrange to all sit it at the same time, either after school or during class time (with a teacher’s support).

What is Informatics?

In the context of this competition, informatics involves problem solving with computer programs. Problems of a mathematical nature are posed, and students will write a computer program to solve the problem. The competition tests the efficiency and correctness of the algorithms the students come up with. The use of a programming language is not the goal itself, but rather a method by which a solution is expressed.

What now?

If you are a student, or a teacher of potentially interested students, email us to register your interest at We’ll email you before the first contest to check you’re all registered and set up to participate.