SUMaC Online

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Stanford has determined that on-campus residential programs should be shifted to an online-only format. In place of our residential program this summer, we are pleased to offer an online alternative to the Stanford University Mathematics Camp (SUMaC).

In this three-week online program, rising high school juniors and seniors engage in deep exploration of mathematics and develop as mathematicians.

Online Academic Enrichment

SUMaC courses are not for credit or grade—they are designed for pure mathematical enrichment. Participants will explore mathematics beyond the typical high school curriculum.
Intensive Exploration
The SUMaC courses focus on pure mathematics—that is, mathematics that is motivated independently of ties to other sciences; nonetheless, important applications are introduced and pursued along the way.
Real-Time Online Instruction
Courses meet for two hours each day (Monday–Friday) for live classroom discussion with their instructor and peers. In addition to the live meeting times, students will engage in daily problem sets and work with Stanford graduate students who serve as teaching assistants.
College-Level Workload
Similar to what they would experience in a college course, students can expect a heavy and engaging workload of assignments to work on outside of the live class meeting times.
Student Engagement
Active participation is key to creating an online community of engaged learners, and students are expected to participate in class and to collaborate with their peers, instructors, and teaching assistants.

Academic Tracks

SUMaC offers two courses, called Program I and Program II, with unique topics for each course. Each student attends one of two courses, both of which build on topics central to mathematics through their historical significance and their relevance to current lines of mathematical research.

Courses meet daily, Monday–Friday, for live classroom instruction. The virtual class period will be held in both the morning (8:00–11:00am PDT) and afternoon (5:00–8:00pm PDT), and participants will be assigned to attend just one of the available meeting times. The exact class start times will be set closer to the program start.
Rubik's Cube

Program I – Abstract Algebra & Number Theory

Program I topics are introduced through five motivating problems such as limitations of straight-edge and compass constructions, classification of patterns in two dimensions, error-correcting codes, cryptography, and the analysis of symmetry in structures.

The mathematics central to solving these problems comes from the areas of abstract algebra and number theory. Abstract algebra originated in the early part of the 19th century through the study of polynomial equations. This branch of mathematics lies at the core of many areas of modern mathematical research. Number theory concerns properties of the integers, and has its origins in ancient mathematics. Number theory remains a very active field of study with interesting open problems and important applications in computer science.
A participant works at a computer in the dorm.

Program II – Algebraic Topology

Program II centers on algebraic topology, a major area of current mathematics research.

Topology is the study of the properties of shapes that remain unaffected by deformations. For example, a sphere made out of rubber can be deformed into the shape of a cube. While it may appear that a sphere and a cube don't have that much in common, it turns out that they are topologically equivalent and in a way that can be made precise mathematically. This course will explore different ways of analyzing topological properties of shapes using algebraic concepts, such as the notion of group.

Please note that Program II is only available during Session Two this summer. See more detail about the session dates below.

2020 Dates and Tuition

SUMaC courses will be offered across two sessions this summer. Each session runs for three weeks, with classes meeting Monday–Friday.
Session One
Monday, June 22 – Friday, July 10, 2020

Courses Available: Program I only

Session Two
Monday, July 13 – Friday, July 31, 2020

Courses Available: Program I and Program II
Program Tuition
Tuition for SUMaC Online is $2,950.

Online Classroom Technology Requirements

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Participants will need to have daily access to a computer that is capable of running the latest versions of internet browsers, plug-ins, and software.
Internet Connection
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Participants will need to be connected to high-speed internet that will support interactive audio and video.
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Participants should have a webcam to support daily participation in class.
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If you are using a laptop with a built-in microphone, we recommend that you use headphones during live class sessions to avoid echo or feedback. If possible, we suggest that you use a USB-based headset with a microphone for clear audio when participating in class.
Suitable Learning Environment
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Do your best to choose a comfortable, distraction-free learning space for the live class meeting times. Keep in mind that the setting should be appropriate for interacting with instructors and fellow students on camera.

Engaging Student Life

Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies seeks to not only provide enriching academic experiences, but also to facilitate engaging learning communities that foster critical thinking, promote personal growth, and inspire lifelong learning outside of the classroom. Outside of the academic coursework, students will have opportunities to engage and build community with their peers through a variety of student life seminars, workshops, and activities, all of which will be available to SUMaC participants.
Hoover Tower on Stanford Campus

A Taste of College Life

Learn about life at Stanford, ask current undergraduate students questions about life in college, and engage in dialogue with Stanford community members.
In a common area, a participant uses a laptop during the program.

Build Connections Around the World

Meet participants from other countries while participating in exciting events like orientation, a talent show, a guest speaker series, and commencement.
Two people bike past the Main Quad.

College Access and Career Planning

From understanding institution types to unpacking personal statements, our College Access and Career Planning workshops will help students prepare for life after high school.
Participants do yoga together outside.

Health and Wellness

Understand the concept of total wellness by gaining insight to personal wellness, learning principles and techniques to mindfulness, and discovering healthy habits as students transition to college.
Six students from Cyprus and the UAE

Global Competencies

Develop an understanding of your identity and the biases we all carry. Strengthen cross-cultural communication skills and utilize a social-justice lens to prepare for engagement in an increasingly globalized society.
Stanford Campus


Reflect on your leadership journey, consider the benefits of relational leadership, and take your leadership to the next level with these workshops.

Daily Expectations

Participants have full daily schedules which incorporate the academic and social aspects of the program. Class time and student life activities are scheduled in an effort to accommodate multiple time zones. Each participant will have a unique schedule as they join our online community from their homes around the world.

In general, students can expect to have roughly 3-5 hours of academic work per weekday, in addition to the daily live class period. Outside of the scheduled class period, students are able to set their own schedule for when they work on class assignments and problem sets.

Online Program Frequently Asked Questions

I had already applied to the program before it switched to an online format. What will happen to my original application? Do I have to re-apply for the online program? 

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In the transition to an online program, all previously-submitted applications will automatically transfer to the online alternative. Applicants who already submitted an application for the 2020 residential program do not need to submit a new application to be considered for this summer's online program. Our admissions team will keep applicants informed of next steps. Please note that this transition may delay notification of your final admission status; we thank you for your understanding as we make every effort to keep you informed. 

Do Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies program participants receive grades or credit?

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We do not provide course grades or credits for completing a Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies program. Our summer courses are for enrichment purposes only. After the conclusion of the program, participants are sent a written evaluation from their instructor and a certificate of completion.

What is the refund policy for Stanford University Mathematics Camp (SUMaC) Online? 

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Application fees and program deposits are non-refundable. To withdraw, the student or parent must notify Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies staff in writing (via email) prior to the start of the program. No refunds or discounts will be given for withdrawals once the program has begun. Refunds cannot be considered until a formal email request is received.

Please see the table below for our refund schedule. 

Date of Written Notification Tuition Refund Amount
Before June 3, 2020     100%
June 3 – June 10, 2020     50%
June 11 – June 17, 2020     25%
After June 17, 2020     0%


Will special considerations be made to the refund policy due to the pandemic?

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If a student must withdraw their enrollment due to impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak, they should notify our office by email as soon as possible. In the event that a student is unable to participate due to COVID-19 and must withdraw after the full tuition refund date has passed, we will review each situation on a case-by-base basis. Please contact our office at and our staff will be happy to assist.