About the Institute
The Institute of Creative Problem Solving for Gifted and Talented Students is one of the most competitive programs in the nation. Each year approximately 700 outstanding students are nominated by principals of schools on Long Island for 84 available spots. Selection by the Institute implies that a student is among the top one-tenth of one percent of all students in mathematics on Long Island in his or her grade. Acceptance is based on five criteria:
- a rigorous entrance exam,
- a recommendation of student's math teacher,
- and a school transcript or report card.
Each student is expected to spend sixty hours in class and on related outside projects. The curriculum covers mathematical topics such as algebra, geometry, and number theory, as well as others not included in the standard courses of study, like problem-solving applied to probability, theory of finite differences, and mass point geometry. Additionally, selected applications of mathematics taken from science and and engineering are presented and discussed.
Participants develop their ability to use a variety of problem-solving skills and strategies; increase their interest and enthusiasm for problem-solving in mathematics; sharpen their mathematical intuition; acquaint themselves with interesting and important mathematical ideas; and experience the fun, satisfaction, and thrill of discovery associated with creative problem solving.
Over the years, many of the Institute's graduates have gone on to win prestigious awards, as well as national and international math, science, and engineering contests. Further, a number of alumni of the Institute have been selected as Intel and Siemens awardees in math, science or technology. Over 10% of alumni received such national and international academic and research awards each year.