The North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO) is an annual competition in which high school students solve linguistics problems drawn from a variety of languages. Only logic and reasoning skills are necessary; no prior knowledge of particular languages or of linguistics is required. You can see examples of the sort of problems involved here.

There is an Open Round in which anyone can participate. Those who do well in the open round are invited to participate in a second, Invitational Round, and the top scoring students in the invitational round are considered for spots on the US team that competes at the International Linguistics Olympiad.

The home page for NACLO is


NACLO is run by faculty members at the University of Michigan and Carnegie-Mellon University.

Participating locally at Western Michigan University

The Open Round competition takes place at contest sites across the country. The Western Michigan University Department of Computer Science is one of the contest sites. This year, the Open Round takes place:

  • Date:

    Thursday, Jan 28, 2016

  • Time:

    10:00 am - 1:00 pm. Participants should arrive by 9:30 -
    the competition starts promptly at 10:00, and we will go over rules and any questions beforehand.

  • Location:

    The College of Engineering and Applied Sciences
    Parkview Campus, Western Michigan Universiy
    4601 Campus Drive
    Kalamazoo, MI 49008

  • Maps and Directions:

    Maps and Directions

  • Room:

    A sign in table will be at the front enterance of the building starting at 9:00 AM.

  • Parking:

    Parking Tags will be available at the sign in table. Please contact John Kapenga john.kapenga@wmich.edu if you will need a parking tag.

  • Lunch And Tours:

    We are planning on providing lunch and short tours after the contest ends at 1:00 for anyone interested. The WMU Sunseeker solar race car and the HPCS High Preformance cluster computer can be viewed along other facilities.

To participate, you just need to register at the NACLO web site. If you have questions about the local contest site, you can send email

Dr. John Kapenga
Department of Computer Science
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5314 USA
Cell: 269-377-4243 | CS office: 269-276-3101

E-Mail: john.kapenga@wmich.edu