Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are the mechanics/guidelines for each event?
Please refer to the Event Mechanics document sent in this confirmation kit, which will contain the mechanics for the Quiz Bee, Lab Skills, and other events.
Will there be an on-campus event for PBO?
Due to the circumstances brought by the COVID-19 pandemic there will be NO on-site events. This is, however, subject to change, so stay tuned for further announcements.
What are the requirements for competing for this year’s PBO?
Due to the pandemic, the PBO will be an online competition where students can compete from home. Competing students will require a stable Internet connection, a laptop/smart device with video-call capabilities, and an external web camera. In addition, students will need to complete other requirements as per the mechanics listed for the examinations.
When and where will the event be held?
Philippine Biology 2021: Sibol will be held as an online competition that will be held primarily through Zoom and Canvas. For more information about the event and the platforms we will be using, please visit bit.ly/PBOZoomAndCanvasResource.
Can we change our registered school participants?
Yes. To request for additional delegates for each school (not exceeding the maximum of 4 participants per school), please send an email to with a subject heading: “PBO 2021: Request for Additional Delegates for [school name]”.
To request for a change to be made in any of the data submitted in the online registration form, please send an email to with a subject heading: “PBO 2021: Request for Change of Data [School Name]”.
Please note that only one request for change will be entertained. Any subsequent requests after the first instance will not be entertained anymore.
What if I have a slow Internet connection for the exams?
Contestants willing to participate must make the necessary arrangements and explore their options or alternatives when taking the exams.
We recommend participants to have the following internet specifications ready when partaking in the competition:
A minimum internet speed of 1.5 megabits per second (mbps) that should be enough to simultaneously access Canvas and connect to a Zoom Video Call. The internet should be reliable enough to last for at least 8 hours from the start of the examination.
Participant’s internet should have around 20 gigabytes (GB) of data available in their current plan. Take note that this is just an approximation, and data consumption per participant may vary.
We highly recommend the use of Wi-Fi connections when taking the examinations.
Participants may opt to utilize mobile data for as long as they meet the aforementioned internet requirements that also utilized HSPA/HSDPA, 4G, or 4G LTE technologies.
Anticipate also that there will be screen sharing, and web cameras and microphones will need to be on throughout the duration of the event. Along with that, you will also need to open an internet browser to access canvas and opening emails.
With that, the following internet specifications are highly recommended.
What if I disconnect in the middle of exams?
Contestants will be allowed to reconnect and continue answering the exam. However, contestants WILL NOT be provided extra time in answering the exam.
What are ways we can pay for the registration fee?
Participants may pay through the following options:
BPI Online Banking
BPI Over-the-Counter (OTC)
You can find the link to the detailed payment processes here: http://bit.ly/PBOPaymentProcedure
Can I let PBO just deduct my payment for PBO 2021 from my pending refunds from PBO 2020?
Unfortunately, we cannot honor this kind of request due to the strict financial protocols being imposed on how the refunds are released. Therefore, you must still pay the registration fee through the payment process stated in your invitations.
I’m not too familiar with using Canvas. Will the PBO team offer a guide/demo?
Before participants join the competition, they will be asked to join a Pre-Event Orientation set a week before the Eliminations. The Pre-Event Orientation will teach students how to use the Canvas platform. Additionally, the Pre-Event Orientation will have an overview of the Contest Mechanics and a Q&A segment.
What will my registration fee pay for?
For this year, registration fees have been kept to a minimum to address the reduced costs in logistical needs and physical arrangements. However, the registration fee of Php 300 will pay for:
Online Infrastructure Payments (Zoom, Website Fees)
Masterclasses and Workshops
Logistical Needs for the event
I wish to participate but unfortunately I don’t have a laptop. May I still join?
To ensure that participants will encounter little problems or inconvenience during the competition, we highly recommend the use of a laptop or desktop computer, or devices with desktop-class capabilities (able to run Desktop Applications/Websites).
If participants opt to utilize a tablet, it must still be capable of doing the following:
Ability to screen share
Able to record audio or has a built-in microphone
Able to connect to an external web camera
Ability to run Zoom and Canvas simultaneously
The organizer’s will NOT be liable for any Software or Internet related issues.
A participant’s failure to meet the requirements set in the previous paragraph will not be allowed to take the exam. Thus, using a tablet is highly discouraged.