Qualification for the World Finals consists of several steps. All universities from across the world are assigned to a region. The most successful teams from regional contests go to the Finals. However, getting to the regionals may also require competing in one or more sub-regional contests.

Universities often hold local ICPC-like competitions to choose teams that will represent them in sub-regional and regional contests. Every year for each region, the number of teams that will enter the Finals is determined. This number depends on the number of participating teams, the results of previous Finals and other factors.

In a regional contest, one university may be represented by several teams, but only one team from each university may enter the World Finals. No team member on the qualifying team may have competed as a contestant in two previous World Finals.

Prizes

Each finalist team will be provided with hotel accommodations for the coach and three contestants according to dates published on ICPC Invitations. The hotel accommodations will provide gender privacy.  The teams and coaches will be treated to a full schedule of activities including a full course of complimentary food functions.

Transportation to the World Finals is the responsibility of the finalists.  The ICPC encourages teams to raise funds for transportation and extracurricular activities from local sources to better strengthen community ties among academia, industry, and government.

Teams finishing in the top four positions will be awarded Gold Medals.  Those teams finishing fifth through eighth place will be awarded Silver Medals.  Those teams finishing ninth through twelfth place will receive Bronze Medals. Additional Bronze Medals may be awarded to teams solving the same number of problems as the twelfth place team and in a total elapsed time no more than 60 minutes more than the twelfth place team.

The highest scoring team is the World Champion and will receive the World Champion Cup and plaques.  The other top twelve teams, the North American Champions, the Latin American Champions, the European Champions, the South Pacific Champions, the Asian Champions, and the Africa & Middle East Champions will also receive plaques.

The World Champion team will be awarded $15,000. Each of the other three Gold Medal teams will be awarded $7,500.  Each Silver Medal team will be awarded $6,000.  Each Bronze Medal team will be awarded $3,000.

Courtesy of the UPE Computer Science Honor Society, the First Solution Award will be $1500.   For the other solved problems, The First to Solve Award will be $1200.