The William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition is administered by the Mathematical Association of America . Held the first Saturday in December, the exam is designed to test originality and technical competence in formal theories from various disciplines of undergraduate mathematics. For a more detailed description, please click here. For the prize structure please click here.
This year's (2017) Putnam competition was held onSaturday, December 2nd, from 10am to 6pm in room >DRL A6, with a two hour break in between (from 1-3pm).
In order to participate in the competition, it was necessary to sign up online by Oct. 16. To participate in practice sessions or to be considered for Penn's Putnam team, students should have signed up in September. Those who didn't sign up in time could still show up at the exam and take the spot of anyone registered who did not appear.
Practice session schedule, fall 2017:
Wed., Sept. 27, 5pm, in DRL 4E19. (Pigeonhole and probability.)
Tues., Oct. 3, 4:30pm, in DRL 4E19. (More probability problems. Also problems on generating functions.)
Tues, Oct. 10, 5pm, in DRL 4E19. (Problems on congruences and divisibility.)
Fri., Oct. 20, 4pm, in DRL A6. (Problems on inequalities.)
Fri., Oct. 27, 3:30pm, in DRL 4E19. (Problems on hidden independence in counting and probability.)
Fri., Nov. 3, 3:30pm, in DRL 4E19. (Mixed topics.)
Tues., Nov. 14, 4:30pm, in DRL 4C8. (Mixed topics.)
Tues., Nov. 21, 4:30pm, in DRL 4C8. (Problems on roots of polynomials.)
The Penn Putnam team was determined by a mock exam, consisting of a few Putnam-type problems. Date and time: Fri., Oct. 13, 3:30-5:30pm, DRL A6.
The Professor in charge of administering the Putnam, determining the team, etc. this year was Professor David Harbater.
Problems from Putnam exams and solutions (up through and including the 2017 exam) can be found here. Winners will be posted there in March or April, 2018.