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Taiwan Wins 3 Gold Medals and 1 Silver Medal at the 2013 International Earth Science Olympiad


Taiwan had great success at the 2013 International Earth Science Olympiad (IESO), which took place in India on September 19th, 2013 Taiwan time. A total of 27 countries attended the IESO. Among them, 23 countries sent 90 contestants compete in IESO, while Germany sent 1 student and the USA sent 3 students to observe the competition. Students from Taiwan got an excellent result of 3 gold medals and 1 silver medal, and the team medals and team international ranking tied for first place with South Korea this year. Over the past 7 years since the beginning of the IESO, Taiwan has ranked first place every year. The 2013 IESO awarded students 10 gold, 19 silver and 30 bronze medals in total.

The 23 countries that sent students to attend this international competition are: Austria, Bangladesh, Belorussia, Brazil, Cambodia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Nigeria, Romania, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Ukraine and the USA. The countries which sent observers to join the competition are: Argentina, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi and Malaysia. IESO has been held for 7 years and India is the 5th host country in Asia.

The national team was coached by a group of coaches consisting of professors, such as Dr. Chang Chun-yen from National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) and more than 10 other professors. Team members were selected in four stages: primary selection, semi-final selection, pre-game training camp, and final selection. 639 students nationwide joined the primary selection this year. After the semi-final and final selections, 4 students were chosen to represent Taiwan in the IESO. The Taiwanese team led by Dr. Liu Te-ching (劉德慶) of NTNU serving as headman and Dr. Lin Pay-Liam (林沛練) of National Central University (NCU) serving as deputy headman. Drs. Fu Hsueh-hai (傅學海) and Yeh Meng-wan (葉孟宛) of NTNU, Dr. Chang Chung-bai (張中白) of NCU, Secretary Chang Yu-fen (張瑜芬), and Dr. Fan Kuang-lung (范光龍) of National Taiwan University served as observers for the team. The Taiwanese team went to India to join the 2013 IESO on September 10th, 2013. The closing and award ceremonies were held in the afternoon of September 19th.

Taiwan has been attending the IESO since 2007, and has performed well each year. To date, Taiwan has won 21 gold medals and 7 silver medals in total. The awards from previous years are as follows:

Year Host Country  Number of  Participating Countries  Term  Award International ranking 
2007  South Korea  3 Gold
1 Silver 
2008  Philippines  2 Gold
2 Silver 
2009  Republic of China (Taiwan)  14  4 Gold 
2010  Indonesia  19  3 Gold
1 Silver 
2011  Italy  26  3 Gold
1 Silver 
2012  Argentina  17  3 Gold
1 Silver 
2013 India  27  3 Gold
1 Silver 


The four winning students’ information and their awards are as follows:

Name  School  Grade  Medal Award  Ranking  Special Award 
Chang Chen-Yen
National Tainan First High school  Gold  International Team Field Investigation Silver Award 
Huang Pin-Chun
Taipei Municipal Jianguo High School  Gold  
Wu Chun-Ru
Taipei Municipal Jianguo High School  Gold   International Team Earth System Project Bronze Award 
Hsieh Pin-Kuan
National Tainan First High school  Silver  16 


To recognize the students’ outstanding performance, the Ministry of Education (MOE) formulated and published Regulations Governing Academic Advancement Incentives for Students Who Compete and Perform Well in International Mathematics or Science Olympiads and International Science Fairs. Those who win gold, silver, or bronze medals in the IESO may be recommended for admission to university mathematics and science departments, or to any university departments, while those who win an honorary award may also be recommended for admission to university mathematics and science departments. Additionally, those who win a gold, silver, or bronze medal will receive scholarships of 200 thousand NTD, 100 thousand NTD, and 50 thousand NTD, respectively. A student who wins two or more different awards in the same subject area or different subject areas during the same academic year should apply for the most valuable scholarship he qualifies for.

After the competition, the Taiwanese team took a cultural and educational trip to New Delhi, India, and then return to Taiwan on September 24th. In the future, Taiwan will continue to train students and invite the most outstanding ones to join international contests to promote Taiwan’s international exchange and expand the students’ global perspective. Taiwan will no doubt select the best-qualified students to compete in next year’s IESO, which will be held in the USA.