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I. Dynamic Analysis Charts for Physics Bowl Data

The level of prestige of the Physics Bowl cannot be measured merely by intuition, but rather by speaking through real data. Generally speaking, a high-prestige competition possesses the following characteristics: a large number of participants, wide regional distribution of the competitors, appropriate difficulty of the competition questions, and a lower proportion of high-level awards.

Does the Physics Bowl (PhysicsBowl) possess the above characteristics? Well, please verify it for yourself with the following set of dynamic charts~

Compiled by UEIE Complete Reference Compilation Group

II. Usage Instructions for the Dynamic Analysis Charts of Physics Bowl Data

III. Number of Participants and Award Ratios

Taking the data published by the Physics Bowl organizers AAPT in 2021 as an example, refer to the table below.



Number of Individuals/Teams

Global Award Winning Ratio



About 3600

About 2.78%






About 2200

About 4.55%




In 2021, for Division 1 individuals, the global top 100 constituted no more than 3%, and for Division 2 it was less than 5%. Both ratios are not too high, which gives a good interpretation of the prestige of the global awards for the Physics Bowl.

IV. Is a Global Award Definitely More Prestigious Than a National Award?

Many people might assume that being among the global top 100 is certainly better than being in the national top 10 or top 10% in terms of ranking and prestige. However, the set of charts provided below may overturn this notion.
Data Analysis-How Gold Content of Physical Bowl-Award Score
From the chart, it can be seen that whether it is Division 1 or Division 2, or whether it is for individuals or teams, the cutoff score for Division 1 is much higher than for Division 2. That is to say, it is much harder to make it into the national top 10 than into the global top 100!

Moreover, the chart also shows a rising trend in the cutoff scores for both the global top 100 and the national top 10 in recent years, which is largely due to the substantial increase in the number of domestic participants and the participation of more high-level competitors. It can be confidently said that the prestige of being in the national top 10 in the Physics Bowl competition is much higher than that of being in the global top 100!

V. Which is More Impressive, a National Individual Gold Award or Being in the Global Individual Top 100?

Data analysis-how much gold is in the physical bowl-analysis of the number of global winners
In 2021, among the global top 100 individual winners of Division 1, there were 55 Chinese students, and in Division 2, there were 65 Chinese students. Most of these students are from four provinces and cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Jiangsu, and Guangdong.

Although the number of national gold award winners is dozens more than the number of Chinese students in the global top 100, the physics level of these students is also very high. They are all exceptionally talented competitors, and both awards are quite prestigious.

For more content related to the PhysicsBowl competition…

Competition prize-American physics competition
Competition-Physics -2022
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