The International Linguistics Olympiad


The International Linguistics Olympiad 2020 will take place from 20 to 24 July in Ventspils, Latvia.

We at the Leibniz Centre for General Linguistics organise the German participation in the International Linguistics Olympiad (
The International Linguistic Olympiad is one of the more recent competitions within other better known championships such as the Mathematics or Chemistry Olympiad.

The Linguistics Olympiad tests language feeling, cultural imagination and logical-analytical thinking, with the result that the best results are achieved not only by linguistically gifted students, but also by those with general and multiple talents.

The Olympic competitions, which last less than a week, take place annually in another country. They consist of individual competitions (the day after arrival) in which five tasks have to be solved within six hours. On the following day you will get to know the country and the people of the host country as well as the opposing teams. On the fourth day, the team task is scheduled, where four students* from one country (= one team) work together on a problem for four hours. The tasks usually consist of finding out structures (grammar) or the meaning of words/word groups from unknown languages. Sometimes the solution process is comparable to deciphering the hieroglyphs. On the last day the award ceremony takes place and there is a party.

Germany participated from 2008-2011 and then again 2018 and 2019.