Key Shine 2018 dates

Closing date for entries
Friday 6th April 2018

Preliminary judging
April 2018

Final judging
May 2018

Awards ceremony
Monday 2nd July 2018


Best covers: magazine, newspaper and homepage

These three awards recognise excellence in the design of a cover and/or homepage of an online magazine or website. Judges will be looking at the design of the cover, creativity and innovation in the design and presentation. On a granular level this will then include easily digestible information about content, details which create ‘reader appeal’ and an incentive to read.

Best illustration and artwork

This award recognises excellence in illustration and artwork. The judges will be looking for and assessing artistic merit, asking themselves how well a piece of creative art tells a story, how well the finished piece is used in the context of the feature or article, its quality and how well it is captioned or explained. The judges will assess whether there is evidence that copyright issues have been understood. Credit will be given for originality.

Design and layout

This award recognises excellence in the overall design of the editorial product cover and/or home page of an online magazine or website. Judges will be looking at the visual appeal of the magazine, the incentive to read, choice and use of typefaces, use of illustrations, innovation and creative flair.

Best photograph

The judges in this category are looking for originality, spontaneity and composition. Technical ability, the quality of an image from a  ‘file size’ perspective and an understanding of the proper use of a camera helps enormously with these but can be a secondary consideration to true talent and a good eye.

Best feature article

This award recognises excellence in creative, incisive, distinctive writing. Judges will be looking for choice of topic in the context of the editorial product, how well the introduction captures attention, how well the theme is developed and concluded, the readability of the article and use of language and words.

Best overall editorial content

This award recognises excellence in the overall standards of the content. The judges will be assessing the range, choice and balance of content, the standard of writing and illustrations, layout and design, the balance of content through the publication and the use of headings and illustrations. Appropriate audience focus will also be considered.

Best business strategy

This award recognises excellence in the overall understanding and execution of commercial strategy.  The judges will be looking to see whether there was a business plan with clear objectives. They want to know if the team had a specific budget or sources of revenue, and how effectively they used this income. Did they set up a team who each had specific responsibilities? Was a target audience identified?

Best environmental strategy

This award recognises initiatives which seek to promote understanding of the environmental issues around the publication of newspapers and magazines. The judges will be looking for evidence of a clear environmental policy which makes good sense, encourages understanding of the environmental issues surrounding the publication of newspapers and magazines, has an emphasis on recycling and shows a positive approach to the issue.

Best community initiative

This award recognises initiatives to connect schools with their communities through promoting the activities of the school to the community, involving the community in the activities of the school or launching initiatives which seek to benefit the wider community publicised through a magazine and/or website. They will be asking whether the initiative seeks to engage the wider community, evidence of it having done so, whether clear objectives were set at the outset, whether and if so how well the initiative has been promoted through the editorial product and whether if, in doing so, the editorial product had been enhanced.

Most inspirational teacher

This pupil-nominated award recognises excellence in the overall understanding and execution of commercial strategy. The judges will be looking to see that a clear strategy is in place which the pupils have devised and that makes commercial sense and that there is evidence that the strategy works.

Most outstanding pupil

In this award category the judges will be looking for a pupil who has shown outstanding qualities of leadership in the production of a content-based communication. The winner will have demonstrated a good understanding of the elements which go to making up a good newspaper, magazine or website. Additionally they will have worked well in a team-based project; and shown evidence of understanding the audience for their product. In essence, providing ‘what readers want’.

Best online

Our judges appreciate that to devise and build a completely custom website for a school project is almost certainly impractical. In recent years we have had successful entries which have used template sites like WordPress. These have then been customised to suit the style of site with modern navigation, clear typography and an intelligent use of colour. However don’t forget that content is king. Our judges will then be looking for compelling stories, great imagery and high editorial standards.

Best magazine

Judges in this category are looking for a finished piece with vision and an irresistible desire to pick up the magazine again and again. The best kind of magazine is one with great content mixed with modern art direction. As a result judges will be looking for an understanding of this both in vision across the publication and its detail. Primarily the magazine must understand its audience and tailor the writing and layout to them, understanding the myriad other media they are consuming – and find a way to stand out.

Best newspaper

A distinctive voice, great reporting and a front page full of issues and interest. These are the base elements of a great newspaper and the starting points for our judges in this category. Our judges always look for an understanding of audience (as in the magazine category above) but a newspaper needs to go even further, understanding a balance of national, local and political interest. Of particular interest will be the mix of crisp, short reporting and feature writing – as well as the use of photography and the use of a great cartoon.

Best cartoon

Speaking of which…
Not an illustration or piece of art, a cartoon is a different beast. This award recognises the talent of wit, observation and irreverence in a drawing. Previous successful entries have been both hand-drawn and computer art. So the only limit here is your imagination. Judges are looking for technical ability, visual appeal and a striking individual style.

The Harrison Cup

In addition to these categories, the judging panel will nominate an overall winner to receive the Harrison Cup to hold for one year. The Harrison Cup is awarded to a school that the judges consider ‘that special something’, bringing a fantastic level of inspiration, innovation or professionalism to Shine.

Latest Tweets

Shine Media Awards @shinemediawards - Nov 17
Thanks so much @KodakPrint - we're really glad to be associated with you... and (hello schoolteachers) really hope that secondary schools across the UK get in touch and enter the 2018 awards - for free!

Shine Media Awards @shinemediawards - Nov 17
We love this initiative!

Shine Media Awards @shinemediawards - Nov 17
ICYMI: Shine is featured on the website of legendary photography company @kodak this week! Big thanks to our friend @DavidMcGuiness for arranging the interview with Shine chair @ahnonitton #shineSMA18 #schoolmagazine #schoolwebsite #schoolnewspaper