All-Russian School Olympiad in Biology
Federal Agency of Education (the branch of Ministry of Education and Science) each year issues an Order about the next All-Russian School Olympiad which includes information and instructions concerning Russian NBO. This Order is send to all Regional Divisions of Federal Agency of Education all around Russian Federation and is distributed among Schools and other Education Institutions (Gymnasium, Lyceum, etc.). An information is also published in journal for school teachers “Biology at School” and on the Website of All-Russian School Olympiad (http://rusolymp.ru).
School Biology Olympiads in Russia have a long history. Initially Olympiads were carried out in some particular schools and cities. Since 1950 local Biology Olympiad is organized by School of Biology of Lomonosov Moscow State University. This Olympiad exists until now. This Olympiad is very popular among not only students from Moscow schools but also among students from Moscow region and other cities of Russian Federation.
The first All-Russian School Biology Olympiad was carried out in 1979 in Barnaul (Altai Region) according to Order of Ministry of Education of Russian Federation. One of organizers of this Olympiad was well-known Russian biologist-methodologist D. I. Traitak.
The first six Olympiads were carried out every second year but starting from seventh Olympiad in 1991 they are carried out each year. It is connected with beginning in 1990 International Biology Olympiad (IBO) because only winners of this year Russian NBO can participate in IBO.
Starting from 1994 Russian NBO is carried out in general according the rules of IBO and includes theoretical and practical tests. The scoring also in general corresponds to the rules of IBO.
Now Russian NBO includes four rounds:
1st round – School round (competition among school students of 9th, 10th and 11th classes) usually takes place in October-November. The tests are prepared for each class by local jury boards in cities. In Russia about 450,000-500,000 students participate in school round.
2nd round – City and Local site round (competition among winners of School round - students of 9th, 10th and 11th classes) takes place in November-December. The tests are prepared for each class by local jury boards in cities and local sites. Usually about 70,000-75,000 students participate in city round.
3rd round – Regional round (competition among winners of City round – school students of 9th, 10th and 11th classes) usually takes place in January-February in 89 regions of Russian Federation and two cities (Moscow and St. Petersburg). Usually about 4,000-4,500 students participate in regional round. The tests are prepared by central methodological committee and correspond to the tests of IBO. Students from 10th and 11th classes have the same theoretical tests but different practical tests, and students from 9th class have separate tests.
4th round – All-Russian round (competition among winners of Regional round – school students of 9th, 10th and 11th classes) takes place in April. Usually about 230-250 students participate in All-Russian round. The tests are prepared by central methodological committee and correspond to the tests of IBO. Students from 10th and 11th classes have the same theoretical tests but different practical tests, and students from 9th class have separate tests. Practical tests for students from 11th class (60-80 students) correspond to the practical tests of current year IBO. This round is curried out in one of the cities of Russian Federation at the local University (last years – Chelyabinsk, Maikop, Ufa, Belgorod).
Theoretical and practical tests of Russian NBO correspond in general to the tests of IBO. Tests for 3rd and 4th round are prepared by central methodological committee and correspond to the tests of IBO. Theoretical tests include questions with single correct answer (Part A, 100 questions), tests with multiple choice (Part B, 40 questions), correct/incorrect statements (Part C, 40 statements), and comparison/confrontation of pictures and statements (Part D, 10 questions).
Practical test for 9th class includes: Botany, Zoology, and Human Anatomy and Physiology.
Practical test for 10th class includes: Botany, Zoology, Human Anatomy and Physiology, and Biochemistry (or Microbiology, Genetics, Ecology, etc.).
Each year Federal Agency of Education organizes two training courses (December and June, duration 2 weeks) for winners of previous Russian NBO (20-25 students from all around Russian Federation). These courses are curried out at Moscow State Regional University (Mytishchi, Moscow region) and Lomonosov Moscow State University (Moscow). During the courses specialists from these Universities and other Institutes give lectures and seminars for students in different fields of Biology. Students also have practical training in Laboratories. All other students optionally have training in their own cities at local Universities, Institutes, Schools, etc.
School and High school textbooks corresponding to the general bachelor’s courses are widely used. Some special literature is also recommended. Foe example, Publishing House “Drofa” issued series of Books “Russian Academy of Sciences – to School Teachers” which include the book (collection of articles)“Actual problems of Biology” (2009) written by leading Russian scientists. Publishing House “Prosveshchenie (Education)” issued series of Books “Five Rings” which include the Books “Biology. All-Russian Olympiads” (2008) and “Biology. International Olympiads” (2009) written by members of Central methodological committee in Biology of All-Russian School Olympiad. Last two books contain recommendation for school teachers and students in training to Biology Olympiad as well as example tests from previous All-Russian NBO or IBO.
All participants of each round of Russian NBO receive “Certificate of Participation” and winners (up to 40% of the number of participants each round. The score of winners should be not less that 50% of maximal points) receive Diplomas and some gifts/souvenirs from Federal agency of Education (winners of 4th round) and from local authorities. Winners of 3rd round optionally have free entrance to local (Regional) Universities and Institutes. Winners of 4th round have free entrance to any University in Russia.
Information about Russian NBO is published in Journal “Biology at School”, on the Web-site of Russian School Olympiad (http://rusolymp.ru), in central and regional Newspapers.
Russian NBO is supported by Federal Agency of Education of Russian Federation (Federal Government). The winners of IBO are supported by V. Potanin Educational Foundation (“Stipendia”, http://www.stipendia.ru) by monthly stipend during their education at Universities and Institutes.
Russian NBO is supported by Federal Agency of Education (the branch of Ministry of Education and Science).
In 2007 Ministry of Education and Science of Russian Federation issued the Rules describing all aspects of conducting of all rounds of all Russian School Olympiads (Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, etc.). These rules strictly prescribe the number of winners who can be delegated to the next round of Olympiad. The first grade winners of previous year Russian NBO (usually 3-6 students from each class) can participate directly in 4th round of current year Russian NBO. In addition each year Federal Agency of Education issues special Order about current Russian NBO where the dates of all rounds, the place of 4th round, jury and organizing committee members, etc., are pointed out.
According to the Rules of Ministry of Education and Science of Russian Federation the candidates to national team for the IBO are selected from first grade winners of 4th round (usually 4-6 students from 10th and 11th classes) after short interview by members of Jury and Central methodological committee.
Central Organizing Committee of All-Russian School Olympiad (the total number of National Olympiads in Russia – 21 in different sciences: Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, etc.) includes 42 members – Presidents, Rectors, Deans, and Professors of leading Russian Universities and specialists from Federal Agency of Education and Regional Divisions of Federal Agency of Education (Chairman- Professor N. N. Kudryavtsev, Rector of Moscow Physical-Technical University).
Central Organizing-Methodological Committee of All-Russian School Olympiad in Biology (Chairman – Professor V. V. Pasechnik, Rector of Moscow State Regional University) includes 12 members – Professors, Associate Professors, and Research Scientists from Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow State Regional University, Timiryazev Biological Museum, etc. Presidents (Chairmen) of Central National committee:
1979-1990 – D. I. Traitak,
1990 –till now – V. V. Pasechnik
The local (regional) executive Organizing Committees are responsible for the first three rounds of Russian NBO. Executive Organizing Committee for the final (4th round) of Russian NBO is formed each year by special Order of Federal Agency of Education and includes members of Central Organizing-Methodological Committee of All-Russian School Olympiad in Biology (usually 5-7 persons), Professors and Scientists from the local University where Olympiad of current year takes place (usually 15-20 persons), and specialists from local Division of Federal Agency of Education (usually 3-5 persons).
Alexander M. Rubtsov
School of Biology Lomonosov Moscow State University 119991 Moscow, Russia Phone: +7 (495) 939-2760/939-4434 Fax: +7 (495) 939-4309/939-3955
Department of Biochemistry Lomonosov Moscow State University 119991 Moscow, Russia Phone: +7 (495) 939-2760/939-4434 Fax: +7 (495) 939-4309/939-3955
Russia (till 1991 – Soviet Union) has participated in IBO since the first IBO (1990). Russia (Soviet Union) was IBO host country in 1991 (Makhachkala, Dagestan).
In Russia usually about 450,000-500,000 students participate in 1st round. Usually about 70,000-75,000 students participate in 2nd round. Usually about 4,000-4,500 students participate in 3rd round. Usually about 230-250 students participate in 4th round of Russian NBO. (Usually about 80-85% of students from 6-11 classes participate in all Russian School Olympiads in different sciences (total number of Olympiads is 21).