By JAYESH CHAURASIA ‘23 & PRAGYA SINGH ‘23
On February 12th, the Edison Eagles took the United States of America Biology Olympiad (USABO), a free standardized test which allows students all over the United States to compete and test their abilities in various disciplines of biology.
The USABO aims to encourage excellence in biology education in the United States and inspire students and their teachers to reach the best standard in biology. Overall, the exam is split into three rounds.
Round one is the Open Exam which is a fifty minute multiple choice exam available to all high school students. The students who score in the top 10% will go to the next round.
In the second round, the students take a 120-minute exam which is split into three parts. Part A includes multiple choice questions while part B contains more complex, multiple choice questions with multiple correct answers. Part C is a short answer or essay with multiple true/false questions.
Lastly, round three is only available to the top 20 scores in the second round, held over a 12-day period with 10 days of instructions and two days of testing.
In the past, two students from Edison High School have received passing scores on the preliminary exam and have proceeded to the USABO semifinals. At Edison High School, this test has been running for 5 years.
According to Mrs. Yanofski, the teacher who runs the USABO in Edison High School, the Biology Olympiad was implemented as a result of students asking for it and continued participation in it year after year. Mrs. Yanofski plans on continuing the Biology Olympiad in future years as Edison High School students continue to show their interest. As interest continues to grow for the Biology Olympiad, Mrs. Yanofski hopes for more students to enjoy taking the Biology Olympiad and wishes to see them continue to perform well as always.
Srinidhi Venkatesh, a participant in this year’s exam, feels that the Biology Olympiad gave her an opportunity to test her biology skills. Although the questions were challenging, she tried to answer as correctly as possible and tried her best.
No matter the results, the USABO has shown EHS students’ academic talents in biology, and teachers like Mrs. Yanofski hope that more students grow interested in the competition in the future.