Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What constitutes a team for the competition?

A: Each team should consist of three students and two teachers.

Q: Can I take part if there are only two members in my team?

A: Yes, but it is not recommended as the workload on the members will be much heavier.

Q: Can a student be registered for more than one team?

A: No. Teachers may be registered for more than one team but not the students.

Q: Are foreign students eligible for the competition?

A: Yes. SYPT is open to all (Singaporeans, PRs and foreigners) secondary and pre-university students studying in Singapore schools (not inclusive of International schools). However, only Singaporeans and Permanent Residents are eligible to be selected for IYPT.

Q: What is the cost for registration?

A: There is no registration fee involved.

Q: Which category should I register for?

A: Current secondary 3 or below students should be registered as Category B. Current secondary 4 and above students must be registered as Category A.

Q: How many teams can each school register?

A: Each school can send in a maximum of 2 teams. IP schools with 6-years program can send 2 teams per category. 

Working on Problems

Q: My school does not have high-end equipment capable of generating highly precise data. In that case, will my team be disadvantaged in the experimentation stage?

A: The jurors understand this limitation. As such, the emphasis is placed on correct modeling of physics concepts and less on precision of experimentation.

Q: I am keen to participate but I am not confident of applying difficult theory to explain my team's experimental observations.

A: Difficult theory may not be the best theory. The jurors want to see how the team conceptualise the experiment, understand the physics behind it and model the phenomena observed. It will suffice if the team is able to apply simple theory to explain the observations.


Q: Does the whole team have to be present during shortlisting?

A: Preferably, but if it is not possible, then at least one student member needs to be around for shortlisting.

Q: Are teacher mentors allowed to attend the shortlisting session?

A: Yes, teachers are strongly encouraged to attend the shortlisting sessions but they should not communicate with the student members during the shortlisting process.

Q: My teacher is a nominated juror for the competition. Does he / she sit on the panel for shortlisting?

A: No. All jurors for shortlisting are independent jurors. School jurors will only be involved in the SYPT Finals, though they will not be in fights involving the schools they mentor.

Q: What are the possible outcome of the shortlisting?

A: The independent jurors will rank the teams during the shortlisting. Top 8-10 teams will be placed in the Main Fights of the SYPT Finals, based on juror recommendation. The remaining teams will be placed in the Poster Presentation. Schools will be notified within a week after shortlisting.

SYPT Finals

Q: In the event that a registered participant is not able to attend the finals, can the school send a replacement?

A: Schools must inform the MOE CPDD officers of any changes to the team members after the stipulated deadline. The replacement can only be made after approval is given by MOE and the YPT committee. Note that only the participants present on the day of the finals will be presented with awards. Schools should be fair to the students who are shortlisted and only send replacements if the students shortlisted are unable to attend the finals.

SYPT - Mini Fights  (No Mini Fights for SYPT 2021)

Q: How many problems should our team prepare for the Mini-Fights?

A: The team will report one problem and oppose one problem. Teams must inform the MOE CPDD officers of the problem to be reported by a given deadline. The problem to oppose will be made known to schools two weeks before the Finals. 

Q: In the Mini Fights, can the same member report and oppose for the team?

A: Yes but to avoid overloading any member, it is advisable for different members to report and oppose.

SYPT- Main Fights

Q: What is the format of the Main Fights in the SYPT Finals?

A: Each Physics fight will follow the following format.

  • Opponent challenge the Reporter. Reporter team captain accepts or rejects the challenge

  • The Reporter prepares his/her presentation (2 mins)

  • The Reporter presents the proposed solution to the problem (10 mins)

  • The Opponent orally questions the Reporter (2 mins)

  • The Opponent prepares his/her presentation (4 mins)

  • The Opponent takes the floor and leads an oral discussion with the Reporter (12 mins; Reporter must engage in discussion within 5 minute of taking the floor)

  • The Opponent takes the floor to summarise the discussion (1 min)

  • Final concluding remarks from the Reporter (1 min)

  • Questions from each jury member (10 mins)

  • All jurors write initial comments and scores for Reporter and Opponent (5 mins)

  • Open scoring (Chief juror requests all jurors to reveal their scores to everyone and request jurors with highest and lowest score to comment) (5 min)

For more information about the main fights, please click here.

Q: What are the weightings of Reporting and Opposing?

A: Reporting score is multiplied by a coefficient of 3 while Opposing score is multiplied by a coefficient of 2. The awards will be based on the rank order of the total score of all fights.

For more information about the main fights, please click here.

Q: How many problems should our team prepare for the Main Fight?

A: During the Main Finals, a team may reject the challenge of three different problems without penalty. From then on, every subsequent rejection will result in drop of coefficient of 0.2 (starting from 3.0). 

Most schools will work on at least 2 problems as reporter and 2 other problems as opponent. However, if time allows, teams are encouraged to work on more problems.

For more information about the main fights, please click here.

Q: In the Main Fights, how many times can the same member report and oppose?

A: Each member in the team can only report or oppose twice out of the four physics fights (i.e. report once and oppose once, report twice or oppose twice).

For more information about the main fights, please click here.

Q: As opponent team in Main Fight, what are the problems that we can't challenge the reporter team to?

A: The problems that an opponent cannot challenge will be informed by the chief juror in the room. Problems cannot be challenged if

  (a) presented by the opponent earlier

  (b) opposed by the opponent earlier

  (c) presented by the reporter earlier

  (d) rejected by the reporter earlier

There must be at least 2 problems left to challenge, otherwise the conditions are released in the order a, b, c, d.

For more information about the main fights, please click here.

SYPT- Final Physics Fights

Q: What is the Final Physics Fight?

A: The 2 teams with the highest total score in the Main Fights will take part in the Final Physics Fight.


Q: What are the details of the Final Physics Fight?

A: Everything is reset for the Final Physics Fight including scores, coefficient, problems allowed and reporters allowed.

Within 15 minutes after announcement, both teams must choose their problems simultaneously. The team with the highest score will choose 1 problem and decide the order of reporting. The team with the 2nd highest score will choose 2 problems in order of preference (They will present their 2nd choice if the problem is the same as the opponent).