2020 Summer Program at San Jose, California (Suspended)

This program has completed.

If you have any inquiries please contact us.

Important Notice (04/22/2020)
We are suspending the 2020 summer program at San Jose, California and converting it into virtual classes. All registrations are automatically transferred to this newly added online program (check program details)

Location?  West Valley College, 14000 Fruitvale Ave, Saratoga, CA 95070

When?  July 27 - Aug. 7, 2020 (10 full class days on weekdays)

Who*?  Programs are intended for students from the 4th to 12th grades

Why? IDEA MATH provides in-depth enrichment in important mathematical areas, particularly in the fields from which contest problems are drawn: algebra, combinatorics, geometry, and number theory. We believe students learn best by discovering, rather than simply memorizing, essential theorems and techniques. Our process puts students at the center of the classes, as students work together to develop their ideas. Our instructors lead this process by teaching vital ideas, giving meaningful examples, and guiding students through the problem-solving process.

How? We apply seminar-style teaching in our classes. Class sizes are small to ensure that students receive plenty of individual attention. Students are expected to work as a group and present their solutions and ideas to the class.

What are some unique strengths of IDEA MATH that distinguish it from other (summer/winter/online/weekend) math programs?

The unique strengths of IDEA MATH can be summarized as follows:

  1. Comprehensive and well-tested teaching materials, modeled after the training materials of the Phillips Exeter Academy math team. (Check curriculum)
  2. Strong team of instructors, consisting of front-line teachers, coaches, and top former students. (Check Staff Page)
  3. Emphasis on student leadership and the development of an attitude conducive to learning.
  4. Focus on schools and the local math community.

For more details, please visit our FAQ page.

Courses Offered

In order to meet the needs of the students with different mathematical backgrounds, IDEA MATH projects the following course offers: PC0, PCA, PC1, PC2, PCX, UC1, UC2, UC3, RC1, MO1, MO2, MO3. When enrollments allow, we will also offer new courses such as RC0, RCX, MO4, etc.

IDEA MATH provides an extensive curriculum. Two of the major strength of our program -- a strong academic team and a full range of materials which allow us to provide proper new courses/groups to meet the needs of the student body.

Some courses might run multiple sections -- we do our best to make sure our classes are small sized classes.

Please visit detailed curriculum grid for more information of IDEA MATH courses.

Program Schedule
9:00 A.M. - 9:30 A.M. Students arrive
9:30 A.M. - 12:45 P.M.   Morning math classes
12:45 P.M. - 2:00 P.M.   Lunch break
2:00 P.M. - 5:15 P.M.   Afternoon math classes
5:15 P.M. - 5:45 P.M. Students depart

Placement and Placement Test

Many students will take the placement test. You may select a course you wish to to take when you register for the summer program. The purpose of the placement test is to group students with similar backgrounds together, and then our teachers will find proper materials to work with each group/section.

Targeted course PC0/PCA PC1/PC2 PCX/UC1 UC2/UC3 RC Level Courses MO Level Courses
Corresponding Placement Test T0 T1 T2 T3 T4 T5

It is important for each applicant to input accurate, complete, detailed, and up-to-date academic background information (age, grade level, math courses taken, official contest scores, etc.) in the applicant's IDEA MATH student account. We review this information to make initial course placement/placement test level decisions.

If a placement test is needed, we will ask the student to take the placement test in one of our open online/onsite placement test sessions. We will find the most proper course placement based on the information entered in the student’s IDEA MATH account and (if applicable) placement test work. Please note that our academic team will make the final decision on your course placement based upon your academic background and your work in the placement test. (Further course placement adjustment can be made, by our academic team, based upon your class work.)

Placement Test Schedule

Placement Test Date Placement Test Time Placement Test Location Registration By*
TBD (mid to late May) 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm 10258 Bandley Drive, Cupertino, CA. TBD

*: If registered by this date, the $50 testing fee is waived for students who registered for the summer program and paid the $50 summer program registration fee.


Application and Tuition Payment Schedule

  Application Completed by* Application Fee Tuition paid by Tuition Amount
Full Day May 15, 2020 $50 (non-refundable) May 31, 2020 $1835***

* Applicants are considered as a returning student if he/she was in our summer, weekend or winter programs within the last 15 months. The returning student in good standing will be automatically enrolled in the summer programs if the student complete the payments for application fee ($50, non-refundable) and tuition by May 15, 2020 (2020/05/15).

  Application Completed by* Application Fee Tuition paid by Tuition Amount
Full Day June 1, 2020 $50 (non refundable) June 15 2020** $1985***
Half Day June 1, 2020 $50 (non-refundable) June 15, 2020** $995

Note: We will offer a $100 tuition scholarship/discount to each full day program student who meets any one (or more) of the following(please note one discount per person per program):
    2019 or 2020 MATHCOUNTS National Round Participants
    2019 or 2020 USAJMO qualifier
    2019 or 2020 USAMO qualifier
A copy of proof is needed. Scholarship check will be given to each qualified student upon his or her completion of the program.

* The application is ONLY considered completed when all the application material are submitted.

** After this date, a late fee will be applied to the tuition: full day program tuition starting from $2185, half day program tuition starting from $1185.

***Lunch is include for full day students.

Application Procedure

Step 1: Create your IDEA MATH account here if you do not have one yet.

Step 2: Log into your account and register for IDEA MATH 2020 Summer Program at San Jose, CA.

Step 3: Select a course or placement test level*

For returning student, please select a course or placement test level per the following information: the most recent course taken at our program, your recommended course, and your most recent contest scores. It is important to update your academic information in your account. Up to date academic information will help us to work with you during the placement process.

For new student, please select a course or placement test level that you wish to take and also select the placement test date that you wish to participate placement test (this is TX, CA, and DC only). It is important for each new applicant to answer all questions accurately and provide detailed information. In particular, age, high school graduation year, detailed math background -- courses taken, official contests taken and official scores (rather than ranks) should be included.

Step 4: Prepare your application material

Our summer program application material will consist of the following:

  1. Student Short Essay (waived for returning students in good standing*)
    An applicant who is new to our program should write 200-300 words on an activity (not necessary on math) in which the applicant is passionate about. Please include your name and (4-digit IDEA MATH student/account) ID number in your essay (for example, John Doe (ID 1234)).**
  2. Letter of Recommendation from a school teacher (waived for returning students in good standing*)
    Recommendation letters must be completed by your current school teachers, preferably your math teacher. The letter should address the student's learning interests, study habits, peer relations, and ability to follow instructions. The teacher can use his/her own format, or use our standard form**
  3. Application fee ($50) can be sent by check or paid by credit card online.

* Applicants are considered as a returning student if he/she was in our summer, weekend or winter programs within the last 15 months. A returning student in good standing with our programs can enjoy the following benefits:
(a) The requirements for Student Short Essay and Letter of Recommendation are waived;
(b) The student will be automatically enrolled in the summer programs if the student complete the payments for (nonrefundable) application fee ($50) by March 31, 2020 (2020/03/31) and tuition by April 15, 2020 (2020/04/15).
** Please refer step 5 for how to submit the summer program registration material.

Step 5: Submitting application material

All application material can be submitted online from your IDEA MATH account. Log into your IDEA MATH, go to my registrations, select the "2020 Summer Program at Plano/Dallas Texas" (this you need to change for each program), then click "Check Registration Details", check the "Application Material" section, click "Review/Edit" button, then following the instruction on the screen to upload student essay and teacher's recommendation letter.

Step 6: Admission

After we receive your materials, we will process the materials and certain status in your account will be updated. (For example, status codes like A for admitted, I for incomplete application, etc.) Please login to your account to see the updates. When you are admitted, you will also receive an email about your admission. The tuition payment option will be available in your account. You can either login to your account to make the tuition payment by credit card online (the tuition payment option will be available in your account) or you can mail the tuition check. The mailing address is IDEA MATH, P.O. Box 338, Exeter, NH 03833-0338.

Please contact us (email to info@ideamath.org) (603)686-1706, if you have any questions regarding the application process.

Step 7: Make Tuition Payment

As a returning student, the recommendation letter and student essay are waived and you have the option to pay the application fee and tuition together with an early rate (due by early application deadline) and your spot is guaranteed. If you register after the early application deadline, we will process your application along with regular applicants.

Note that registration is only the first step of towards enrollment. Enrollment (for each session) is completed only after the tuition is paid in full.

Please log in to your account to pay the tuition online.


As always, we welcome parents' specific academic questions about our curriculum and teaching styles, as well as students' class-work and preparation. Please contact info@ideamath.org.

Tuition Refund Policy For Each Session

IDEA MATH provides the following tuition refund amount per schedule posted it here:
Withdraw Request Made by* Refund Amount
Before June 29th, 2020 Paid Tuition - $200
After June 29th, before July 13th, 2020 Paid Tuition * 80% - $200
After July 13th, before 1st day of classes Paid Tuition * 50% - $200
After 1st day of classes No refund

Please note that only tuition is refundable per the above policy. Other fees such as the application fee, the registration fee, and the placement testing fee are non-refundable.

To request a refund and withdraw your student, please send a complete request in writing to info@ideamath.org. You must include the payee name and mailing address matching the information in the student's account in order for your request to be deemed complete and submitted. Please include "Refund Request" and the student's name in the subject line. The amount of the refund will be based on the time that a complete request is submitted; incomplete requests will not be deemed to meet deadlines for withdrawal.

If the student is ill and chooses to withdraw from the program, we can offer prorated credit (proportional based upon the first refund policy: paid tuition deducted by $200) towards a future program. A note from a licensed physician is required. The same policy applies if the IDEA MATH staff determine that your student must withdraw due to illness in order to protect the health and welfare of other students.

For all purposes related to this refund policy, a day shall be deemed to begin at 12:01am local time of US Eastern Standard Time Zone (EST).

Staff Information will be available soon!

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General FAQ links

Main program FAQ page. For general program information such as teaching method, class size, core courses, admission, placement, etc.

Summer Program Registration FAQ. For summer program registration information, such as how to upload your application material, how to sign up for buses.

2020 Summer Program at California Bay Area FAQ

Here are some questions that are frequently asked. If you have additional questions, please email info@ideamath.org

Question 1: What is the typical schedule of a day?

Please refer to here for a detailed daily schedule.

Question 2: How much is the tuition for the summer camp, and are scholarships and/or sibling discounts offered?

For the precise tuition, please see: here

We offer a $100 scholarship to students who are USA(J)MO qualifiers or MathCounts national qualifiers during the current or previous academic year. This scholarship will be given to enrolled students at the beginning of the program.

We do not offer sibling discount.

Question 3: Are the meals included in the program?

Lunch is included. Please make sure enter your dietary and allergy information into your account.

Question 4: What do students do during lunch time (besides eating lunch)?

Students have lunch first (two shifts). After the lunch, they have some recreational activities (tag football, playing varies card games and board games. All activities are under staff supervision.

Question 5: Are calculators and other electronic devices allowed in the camp?

We do not stop students from bringing electronic devices to IDEA MATH. However, we still forbid inappropriate uses of these electronic devices for instance, playing online games on one's computer will constitute as an inappropriate usage. The staff will enforce these rules at their discretion. Needless to say, the usage of any electronic devices during class will be strictly forbidden by the instructors.

Nevertheless, we highly encourage students to not bring their laptops or other high-powered devices to camp, as they tend to distract the students from learning, instead of aiding the students.

Question 6: Will there be transportation for day students to go to program daily?

As this is a day program, we do not provide transportation or living arrangements.

Question 7: What is the half-day program?

Our program is intended for full day program. For each course, we have 4 main subject areas - Algebra, Geometry, Counting, and Number Sense. In each morning class, students work on two of those topics areas, and the other two in the afternoon. Therefore, in the case that a student has some scheduling difficulties or is not ready for studying math for a full day, the student can choose half-day program (morning or afternoon program), they work on two topic areas instead of four.

Sometimes, a student has scheduling difficulties and can only participate the first week. If there are space available, we will allow this too. The rate will be the same as that rate of half-day program. However, we do admit full day program students first, and we do our best try to admit half-day program students.