Competition Details

The competition is open to all full-time Secondary 3 and 4 (or equivalent) students in Singapore. There is no age limit as we focus on the academic level rather than age.

There are 2 rounds of competition:

Round 1 - Two hour theory paper comprising Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ).  All students registered for the competition will sit for round 1.

Round 2 - Practical component in which participants are given 2-3 hours to conduct a set experiments in teams of 3.  Only selected students will complete round 2.

Round 1

Participants will be given 50 MCQs.  Answers must be shaded in the answer sheet given.  Every correct or best answer will be awarded 2 marks and every wrong answer will be deducted 0.5 marks.  No marks will be deducted if no answer is shaded.  Participants are advised to bring a 2B pencil and an eraser.  Only non-programmable calculators will be allowed.  Avoid bringing valuables to the examination venue.  A photo identity card must also be produced during the competition.  

Selection process for Round 2

Up to a maximum of 20% of participants registered for Round 1 will be selected for Round 2.

Participants from each school will be selected in multiples of 3 to form teams.

For schools sending at least 25 participants, at least 3 best performing students (1 team) will be selected for Round 2 regardless of their marks.  However they will still need to meet the minimum marks for R1 and R2 to receive a medal.

The list of invited students for Round 2 will be released on this website 2 weeks from Round 1 of the competition.

The teacher-in-charge from the schools may select up to 2 students who competed R1 to replace any of the selected students who are unable to make it for Round 2 due to other school commitments.  For example if 1 or 2 students are not able to make it, teacher-in-charge may at their own descretion select two students who attended R1 to participate in R2.  However, if there are 3 students who cannot make it, no replacement can be made.  If there 7 students who cannot make it to R2, then only 1 student can be replaced.  

Students who have medical issues on the day of the competition may be replaced by one of those who had participated in round 1 and can be selected by the teacher-in-charge in that school based on availability at the last minute.  However, the student must submit a medical certificate from a doctor to the organising committee.  The name, index number and school of the student replacing his/her place must be written at the back of the medical certificate. 

Team members (groups of 3) must be confirmed at least one week before the start of Round 2.

Failure to meet any criteria mentioned here will result in the team being disqualified from the competition.

Round 2

Participation in round 2 is by invitation only.  Round 2 is a practical paper which will last for up to 3 hours (please check webpage "important dates").  Each team will be given three question papers, two in white and one in colour.  Only the coloured paper will be marked, the others will be destroyed.  The practical paper consists of up to 5 experiments (note: number of experiments may vary from year to year).  All experiments must be completed within the time given.  Team members may delegate the work between the three members at their own discretion.  Answers must be written in pen and intelligible.  One mark will be given to all 3 students.  Special needs students must inform the secretariat in advance.  


Gold/silver/bronze/merit awards will be presented to the students based on the total marks scored in the first round and second round of the competition.  Up to a maximum of 20% of total registered participants will be awarded Gold, Silver or Bronze in the ratio of approximately 1:1:2 based on merit. Medal will only be awarded to those who meet the minimum/passing scores for R1 and R2. The next ~15 to 20% will be awarded Merit certificates.  Certificates of participation will be awarded to all other students who attended R1.  The criteria will be followed as closely as possible but is subjected to change by the main organising committee.

Awards will also be given to top performing schools based on the total number of medals won. There will be 3 bands of top performing schools. Number of awards given will depend on the results year to year. Generally, 2 schools in band 1, 3 schools in band 2 and 4 schools in band 3.  However depending on the results, the number of schools in each band will depend on the performance of each school. Overall top students and teams will also be given awards based on overall individual scores and team performance in Round 2 respectively.

Please note that the result of SJChO will only be announced during the award ceremony.