The impact on education of Astronomical Olympiads and the International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics
Astronomical Olympiads and similar competitions for highschool students have been run in some countries for more than half a century, and last year marked the tenth anniversary of the largest such competition with global reach, the International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics. The effect of these has been to reach out to a large number of school students who might not otherwise have considered astronomy as a subject; help maintain a high, guided standard of astronomy education even in countries where astronomy is not (or no longer) on the curriculum; and to encourage those students who participate to strive harder and pursue astronomy further by giving them goals to aim for, rewarding their efforts with medals, recognition and participation in the international events in interesting locations and, above all, showing them that there are many other students just like them both in their own country and around the world. Many of the students go on to careers in astronomy education or research. We believe that Astronomy Olympiads are a very valuable element in the astronomy education framework which can be used to further the common goal of sustaining and growing the astronomical community.
Stachowski, G., & Sule, A. (2019). The impact on education of Astronomical Olympiads and the International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics. EPJ Web of Conferences, 200, 01011. https://doi.org/10.1051/epjconf/201920001011