Four tasks from all fields of biology must be dealt with by individual students (no teams!) (which are published on posters and flyers, distributed to all German high schools, as well as in the InterNet). The tasks can be solved using science literature and expertise as homework. The tasks are above the level of school material and school curricula. It is not necessary for everything to be correct to get ahead.
40 multiple choice and 10 complex tasks from the areas cytology (25 %), anatomy and physiology of plants and animals (15 % each), behaviour (5 %), genetics and evolution (15 %), ecology (15 %), systematics (10 %) must be solved by individual students (no teams!) in approximately two hours (120 minutes). The distribution of the percentages does not correspond to curriculum contents, but to the international IBO rules. Usually participants with more than 50 % correct responses proceed to the next round. To learn more about the tasks of the 2nd round you can download example tasks with solutions as pdf-document in German (491 KByte) here.3rd round:
The demands increase, particularly regarding practice. In a theoretical section 80 MC tasks and approximately 20 complex tasks from the same fields of biology as in the 2nd round are to be processed in four time hours. Within the practical area, 3 laboratory sessions of 75 minutes each (in 3 areas of biology) with up to three tasks will be conducted by each individual student at the IPN in Kiel.4th round:
A complex practical task lasting several hours must be solved on the basis of theoretical knowledge (in the form of a study). 10 complex theoretical tasks from all fields of biology as well as further practical laboratory tasks with 3 time hours each are processed. Besides an integrative selection procedure of the German National Merit Foundation takes place on the basis of a verbal seminar for each individual student.