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Texas A&M University

Derivative Bee Fall 2023

Texas A&M University Department of Mathematics
Eleventh Annual Derivative Bee

Wednesday, October 11, 2023, 7:15 - 9:30pm
Blocker 169

A contest to determine who can compute derivatives fastest.
All derivatives are at the level of Math 147/151/171.
Open to ALL students who are currently enrolled in or have completed any of the above courses.

This will be a great review for 147/151/171 exams.


There are separate prizes for those in Calculus 1 and those who are more advanced. We have a line-up of great prizes such as several Maple packages ($99 value) and TI-Nspire calculators, as well as t-shirts.

All participants must register by October 11 at 12noon CDT

Registration form


The rules may be modified as we go.

  • Eligibility
    1. Everyone is eligible.
    2. Undergraduates in Calc 1 will compete in division U. Undergraduates who have completed Calc 1, graduate students and general public will compete in division G. If there is time and interest, there will be division F competition for faculty.
  • Qualifying Rounds
    1. Bring paper and pencil.
    2. There will be 6-8 rounds. Everyone in the audience will be eligible.
    3. In each round, a function will be displayed on the overhead screen. You will have a specified amount of time (e.g. 2 or 4 minutes) to compute the derivative of the function. At the end of this time, you must select your answer choice on an assigned clicker. Each participant with a correct answer will receive a point.
    4. At the end of 6-8 rounds, the participants who score above a to-be-determined cutoff will become semifinalists. They will move to the front of the room.
  • Elimination Rounds
    1. In each round, between 2 and 6 semifinalists will be at the white board. A function will be displayed on the overhead screen. The (to be determined) portion of the finalists who correctly compute the derivative of the function first will continue to the finals. The remaining students will be eliminated.
    2. A time limit will be imposed.
  • Wild Card
    1. During the Elimination Rounds, any participants in the audience who correctly compute the derivative before the finalists will receive a point.
    2. At the end of the Elimination Rounds, the participant with the most points who has not already won a prize will be the Wild Card winner.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 04-Oct-2023 08:42:26 CDT.
Copyright © 2006-09 Philip B. Yasskin, 2011 David J. Manuel and Gregory Berkolaiko, 2012-19 David J. Manuel, 2020-23 Todd Schrader and David J. Manuel.
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