Academic Decathlon of Ohio is a statewide non-profit organization that encourages enthusiasm for learning by acknowledging academic excellence among Ohio high school students of different achievement levels. This is accomplished by providing local, regional and state multidisciplinary academic competitions based on the Academic Decathlon® curricula. All Ohio public and private high schools are eligible to compete.
How Academic Decathlon Works
Teams of nine students compete in ten areas: art, economics, essay, interview, literature, mathematics, music, science, social science and speech which are based on a relevant and challenging theme each year. Participants take multiple choice exams in the seven academic areas of the competition. For the three interpersonal areas of the competition, students deliver a prepared and an impromptu speech, participate in an interview, and write an essay.
A unique aspect of the program is that teams are composed of students from all academic achievements. Each team is composed of three “A” students (honor), three “B” students (scholastic), and three “C” students (varsity). Each category of students competes only against other students within that category for medals within each of the ten areas.
Winning teams advance through the local, regional, and state levels of competition. All registered decathletes are eligible to compete in the local and regional competitions. However, only a 9-member team, having three “A” students, three “B” students and three “C” students will be eligible to advance to the state competition. Decathletes not eligible to advance to the state competition may compete in the Individual Division where decathletes will compete for medals separate from the team competition. There is a separate entry fee for the Individual Division.
Public portions of regional and state competitions include stellar prepared speeches delivered by students having the highest prepared speech scores and the exciting Super Quiz™ Oral Relay where individuals from each team will take turns solving multiple choice questions in front of a live audience.
The culminating event at the regional and state competitions is the exhilarating award ceremony where gold, silver and bronze medals are presented to the top three students in each category in every event in each division. In the event of a tie, duplicate medals are awarded. Medals are also awarded to overall individual winners in each of the three categories (honor, scholastic and varsity). The highest scoring member on each team will also be recognized and receive a medal. At the state competition, the highest scoring student in each category in the large and small school divisions will receive the distinguished “Golden Eagle” award and a direct scholarship.
Team awards are presented to the top three Super Quiz teams. The highest scoring team in each division earns a team division award and becomes eligible to compete in the online national competition. The overall highest scoring team is awarded the state champion team trophy. This team will then compete against other state champions at the United States Academic Decathlon® National Final Competition which is hosted by a different state each year. In April, 2017 in Madison, Wisconsin, the Ohio state championship team, Oakwood High School from Dayton became the National Champions in Division III and ranked third overall!
Benefits of the Program:
• fosters collaboration, communication, and critical thinking
• acquire knowledge and an understanding of the fine arts
• promotes learning as a privilege
• supports team spirit and encourages a sense of belonging
• the curricula is developed by national experts
• provides rigorous academic competition
• helps refine time management skills
• further prepare students for college level coursework
• gives students an opportunity to “celebrate their knowledge”
• promotes a positive image of students in our communities
• provides wholesome inter-school academic competition
Contributions made to the Academic Decathlon of Excellence, Inc. help foster an enthusiasm for learning among our youth in Ohio and are exempt from federal income tax under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3). We are very grateful to the many community members and businesses that join us in promoting academic excellence through their contributions of funds, time, talent and/or materials.
For more information on the history of the organization, visit USAD.org: Academic Decathlon® History.