With the aim of escalating attention to language and linguistics in the Asia Pacific region, the Asia Pacific Linguistics Olympiad (APLO) has been held every year since 2019. Last year, a total of 97 contestants participated in 7 testing sites simultaneously, representing 6 countries/regions. Additionally, 5 guest countries outside the Asia-Pacific region were invited and participated in the contest.
We, the Board of APLO, are eager to keep pushing this initiative forward and are hereby inviting you to join this international collaboration of educating young and brilliant minds around the Asia-Pacific region by participating in our third Olympiad, to be held on March 28th, 2021.
APLO is not a contest where students from different countries physically meet in one place to participate in the competition. Instead, problem sets will be distributed to the local organizing committees of the participating countries or regions beforehand, and all contestants will compete in their home countries on the same day. Detailed plans have been drawn up as below.
We would like to invite the countries or regions to participate in APLO 2021, that (a) are part of the Asia-Pacific region, and (b) have either participated or have shown interest in participating in the APLO or IOL in the past.
Any country or region from outside the Asia Pacific region will be welcomed to take part in APLO 2021 as a guest country.
The contest is a one-day paper-based contest, with individuals competing within their home countries. There is no team contest. The contest will run for five hours, where contestants are asked to solve five problems featuring languages and linguistics.
- Each delegation must run one or more oﬀicial contest site(s) that is/are fully supervised by the invigilator(s) designated by the local organizers. All contestants must sit the contest at one of the oﬀicial contest sites.
- [Exception regarding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic] Alternatively, the local organizers can choose to run a virtual contest site, where contestants are invigilated through an online real-time video monitoring. In such cases, a detailed plan on invigilation needs to be reported to and approved by the Board in advance.
- Local organizers are free to choose the number of candidates participating in APLO as a part of their delegation. However, only the top eight competitors from each delegation will be awarded and recorded as oﬀicial participants (the process of selecting the top eight candidates is described later in this letter).
- Contestants are eligible for the APLO if and only if they are eligible for the IOL in the same year.
Each delegation has the right to claim one local language to be added to the oﬀicial languages of the APLO, with responsibilities to (i) recommend a member to the International Jury, who has the competence of translating problems into the claimed language and (ii) have Local Jury with ability to grade the submissions written in the claimed language. Every contestant, no matter which region they represent or are sitting in for the contest, has the right to choose a working language among all oﬀicial languages of the APLO and solve problems in it. There is no advantage or disadvantage in choosing English as a working language.
Accreditation Criteria for Local Organizers
Countries or regions seeking to participate for the first time should seek accreditation from the International Board. Accreditation can be sought at any time, but the deadline of January 31st must be met to guarantee participation in the upcoming APLO.
To be accredited, Local Organizers should either (a) be local organizers of a country or region that is accredited by the IOL or (b) fulfill the following criteria:
- must not be an individual;
- have a general contact for local inquiries (an email address, and, preferably, a website or social media page);
- have at least one person (coordinator) who arranges the contest and serves as a point of contact with the board and at least one person (jury) who can translate the problems and mark the papers and send back to the International Jury;
- advertise the contest to a non-negligible number of students, and report the results to the board. (If the country or region has a first round before the APLO, they should mention the APLO on the notice of their national contest.)
Countries or regions from outside the Asia Pacific region are welcome to take part in APLO 2021 as a guest country. Local Organizers of guest countries should meet the same criteria of accreditation and apply before the same deadline. The differences between fully participating countries and guest countries follow:
- contestants are given certificates of participation but not awards;
- contests must start during or after the oﬀicial starting time slot of APLO.
Bodies of the APLO
Below are the bodies that constitute the APLO, and their responsibilities.
- International Board
- establishes and amends constitutions of the APLO
- internationally coordinates the competition
- accredits the delegations
- shall be (re-)elected every year, at the annual meeting
- International Jury
- creates the problem set in all oﬀicial languages
- collects the results reported by Local Jury and awards contestants
- Local Organizers
- represent the delegation and locally coordinates the competition – advertise the APLO in the region they represent
- distribute certificates after the results are published
- Local Jury
- marks the submissions and reports the scores to the International Jury
International Board of the APLO
- Monojit Choudhury, General Co-chair
- Minkyu Kim, General Co-chair
- Suhaimi Ramly, APLO Board member
- Shu-Kai Hsieh, APLO Board member
- Rujul Gandhi, International Jury Chair
- Simona Klemenčič, Public Relations Chair
Timeline of APLO 2021
By the end of February: Each delegation in the region should apply for accreditation. The International Board will accredit the delegations and finalize the list of participating delegations in the APLO of that year.
Second week of March: International Jury distributes the multilingual versions of the problem set.
March 28th (Sunday): The APLO is held in each testing site.
The following Monday: International Jury distributes the multilingual versions of the solution and the grading scheme. The Local Jury must start grading the submissions as soon as possible and send the results to International Jury along with the scanned copies of up to top ten submissions in seven days.
International Jury confirms the scores of the top ten submissions from each delegation and award medals to eight candidates (see below for awarding scheme).
By the end of April: International Jury notifies the results to local organizers. Local Organizers create the certificates in the format prescribed by APLO and distribute them in any manner — physical or digital — they deem appropriate. The announcement of the results should be scheduled under the consensus of all participating local organizers as well as the Board.
During the IOL: Annual meeting of the APLO is held.
After judging is complete, the top eight contestants from each delegation will be counted as the delegation’s oﬀicial participants.
- Let m and s be the mean and the standard deviation of all oﬀicial participants.
- m + s is the cut-off score for Gold medals;
- m is the cut-off score for Silver medals;
- m − s is the cut-off score for Bronze medals.
- Maximum number of the medals within the delegation:
- Gold ≤ 1;
- Gold + Silver ≤ 4;
- Gold + Silver + Bronze ≤ 8.
- Oﬀicial participants who have not received any medal will be awarded Honorable Mentions.
The International Board of APLO