National Maths Summer School

The National Mathematics Summer School (NMSS) is a program for the discovery and development of mathematically gifted and talented students who will be studying at Year 12 next year. It is a two-week residential summer course held each January at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra.

Up to seven candidates will be selected from Western Australia. Students will be working with mathematicians in a number of branches of mathematics at a relatively advanced level. They attend tutorials under the guidance of a range of staff – postgraduate students, mathematics teachers and academic mathematicians.

The main activity of NMSS is an in-depth study of three or four different areas of mathematics. Each is very challenging and will extend every student. On the other hand, the program is non-competitive and very much hands-on. The emphasis is on doing mathematics, not just on listening to someone else talking about it.

By the end of the two weeks, most students are amazed at how much they have accomplished and post-school surveys indicate that the NMSS has succeeded in extending their intellectual horizons. Almost everyone returns home with a considerably enhanced view of their own potential.

The cost for the two-week NMSS is $1100 plus return airfares to Canberra. However the following support is available:

  • The Larry Blakers Scholarship valued at $500 is awarded by MAWA to the most promising candidate selected for the NMSS. Professor Larry Blakers (1917-1995) was head of the mathematics Department at UWA for 30 years from 1952 to 1982, then for a further 10 years as an adjunct professor. He was a founder of MAWA in 1958 and was later made an honorary life member. In 1969 he was the founder of the NMSS and its director until 1992. UWA have installed a commemorative bust of him in recognition of his very significant contribution to mathematics and mathematics education.

  • The Larry Blakers State School Student’s Award valued at $400 is awarded to the next most promising of the selected candidates who attends a Department of Education school. This was initiated by Mrs Terri Blakers with a recent bequest to MAWA to ensure that Larry’s legacy will live on.

For more details, visit For Western Australian students to be selected for the NMSS, students are required to complete the student application link below. Applications submitted will be forwarded to their teachers and heads of Mathematics for the final approval stages. The closing date for completed applications is 1st August.

Student’s Section

Student’s Application

Head of Mathematics Section

Section C to be completed by the student’s Mathematics teacher 

Teacher’s Section

Section B to be completed by the student’s Mathematics teacher 

Dear Colleagues,

The National Mathematics Summer School is an invaluable opportunity for the development of our top students. A great deal of effort is made to provide a rich and entertaining two weeks of Mathematics for the few dozen who are selected from throughout Australia.

Those mathematically gifted students who are not intending to specialise in mathematics are also welcome. All students currently studying Year 11 Mathematics can be considered, regardless of age.

The costs and awards available are detailed above.

I hope that you will promote this event with your gifted students, perhaps by providing them with the above link. The NMSS website should answer most questions ( Please get in touch with me through MAWA if you require further information.

All the best,

Paul Brown
NMSS Convenor for Western Australia