Online Physics Competition


McMaster’s Department of Physics & Astronomy’s annual Physics@Mac Online Physics Competition is designed to be inclusive and fun. This Competition:

  • Is open to students in Grades 9-12.
  • Awards cash prizes of $100 to the top three teams in Grade 12 and the top three teams in Grade 11 or below. Cash prizes are only awarded to Canadian students but all international students are welcome to compete for fun. 
  • Consists of 10 multiple choice questions that stress conceptual understanding with less emphasis on quantatitive calculations.
  • Encourages students to work in pairs and collaborate.
  • Allows scientific calculators (non-programmable and non-graphing).
  • Requires teachers to register students (see below) and supervise students on the Competition day.

Teachers register students here. Teachers who register teams (students may not register themselves) will receive a confirmation email with login numbers and passwords for each team. Teams can consist of one or two students. Teachers are asked to indicate what grade the team is in. All teams in Grades 9 to 11 compete against each other in one category and all teams in Grade 12 compete in the other category. If a student has taken, or is currently taking Grade 12 physics they are considered Grade 12 for the purposes of this Competition, all other studetns are considered Grade 11 or below. The contest is designed for upper year high school students and is based on physics in the Grade 11 and 12 curriculum, but all interested students are encouraged to participate regardless of grade!

On the days of the competition (TBA), teams may go to this website and login to compete at any time after 7:30 a.m. Teams may submit their answers online anytime before 5:30 p.m. on December 4th or 5th, 2019. Teams may only submit their answers once and should be careful before pressing the “submit” button. The difference between the initial login time and the time at which answers are submitted will be calculated as the team’s elapsed time. Teachers will act as local event coordinators, and provide appropriate supervision for the event. Teams will be judged on the basis of the number of questions answered correctly. In the event of a tie, the team with the shortest elapsed time will be declared the winner. Teams whose elapsed time exceeds 1 hour and 30 minutes will not be considered for a prize.

The top three teams in grades 9 to 11 and the top three teams in grade 12 will be awarded $100 per team and their names, along with the names of their schools, will be posted on this website in early January. 

If you have questions, if you are having trouble registering, or if you would like an email reminder about this event, please contact Sara Cormier, Instructional Assistant, at



The 2019 competition will take place on two days: Wednesday, December 4, 2019 and Thursday, December 5, 2019.

Note we are holding the contest on two days this year (2019) to allow for teachers in Ontario Public High Schools to still participate.

Registration is now closed. Teachers register here.


Download Questions/Submit Answers

This year's Competition took  place on December 4th and 5th 2019 between 7:30am (EST) and 5:30pm (EST).

Login with your team username and password to write the contest here . You will not be able to log in before or after the competition. 

You may need to refresh this page if you first opened it before the competition started. If you have any questions please contact

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McMaster University - Faculty of Science | Physics & Astronomy