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How to Get Awards for Your Learning Game

Industry awards are a fantastic way to create recognition and credibility around your learning game. External validation like industry awards and press placements will open doors to further validation and press – it is the quintessential model of a “virtuous cycle.” 

(Image source: Giphy)

But a little known fact about industry awards is that they do not simply appear at your doorstep when you’ve made something great. You have to seek them out and apply, and if you’re new to this learning games racket, you might not know where to look. 

Lucky for you, you’re a reader of the Filament Games blog, and we’re here to help. Check out our awards program round-up below, and let us know if you need a vote!

Games for Change Awards

Entries due: February 12th, 2021
Submission fee: Free
Details: Feeling confident that your learning or social impact game is award-worthy? Then you won’t want to miss out on applying to the annual Games for Change (G4C) awards! This competitive program highlights nominees in eight categories: Most Innovative, Best Gameplay, Most Significant Impact, Best Learning Game, Best XR for Change Experience, Best Student Game, G4C People’s Choice Award, and Game of the Year. [LEARN MORE]

Serious Play Awards

Entries due: February 9th, 2021 (professional); March 1, 2021 (student)
Submission fee: $75-$400 (depending on entry criteria, more info)
Details: An extension of the Serious Play Conference, the Serious Play Awards are all about celebrating outstanding games for education and training – across government/military, healthcare, corporate, K12, and other learning settings. Offering separate categories for digital games, tabletop/board games, and student games, the Serious Play Awards is another big name in the serious games awards circuit. [LEARN MORE]

Tech & Learning Awards of Excellence

Entries due: TBD 2021
Submission fee: $595
Details: Tech & Learning’s Awards of Excellence have been around for more than 40 years – but there’s never been a better time to apply than today! Each year, ten products across three categories – Hardware, Software, and Enterprise Solutions – are highlighted as finalists, with winners featured in a special issue of Tech & Learning. [LEARN MORE]

Serious Games Showcase & Challenge

Entries due: September 23, 2021
Submission fee: $250.00 (professional); Free (student, government)
Details: A much-celebrated component of the annual Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC), the Serious Games Showcase and Challenge is a dedicated space for showcasing excellence in serious games development. And best of all? All finalists are invited to exhibit their game in front of an audience of more than 17,000 attendees at the SGS&C booth. [LEARN MORE]


Entries due: TBD January 2022
Submission fee: $545 (SIIA Members & Non-profit Organizations); $1095 (Non-members)
Details: Another awards program with a 35+ year tenure in the EdTech space, the SIIA CODiE Awards honor outstanding software, education, information, and media products in the business and EdTech industries. A word of caution, though – the entry fee is a bit steep, particularly for non-member organizations. [LEARN MORE]

The EdTech Digest EdTech Awards

Entries due: TBD 2021
Submission fee: $249
Details: EdTech Digest’s EdTech Awards highlights cool tools, inspiring leaders, and trends across K-12, higher education, and the skills/workforce sectors. Offering dedicated Games for Learning/Simulation Solution and VR/AR Solution categories, winning an EdTech Award can serve as a great way to improve awareness around your game or product. [LEARN MORE]

Reimagine Education Awards

Entries due: TBD 2021
Submission fee: Free
Details: Boasting a grand total of $50,000 in prize money, sixteen award categories, and bonus honors for winners in each region and discipline, the Reimagine Education Awards are a big deal among EdTech enthusiasts – and the zero dollar entry fee ensures that all projects have a shot in the competition. Please note that all finalists must attend the Reimagine Education Conference in order to remain in qualification for the awards. [LEARN MORE]

The Webby Awards

Entries due: February 12, 2021
Submission fee: $435
Details: Honoring the best of the internet, the Webby Awards is an annual celebration of the year’s most memorable digital creations: podcasts, websites, games, and more. Winning a Webby is a huge deal – and we’re thrilled to have taken home the coveted People’s Voice Award for “Best Game: Education” at the 2019 awards. Perhaps this year, it’s your chance to win! [LEARN MORE]

International Educational Games Competition

Entries due: April 21, 2021
Submission fee: Free
Details: Each year, the European Conference on Games Based Learning (ECGBL) hosts the International Educational Game Competition (IEGC), highlighting outstanding achievements in the game-based learning space. Offering separate categories for fully-developed games, in-development titles, and student creations, IEGC is perfect for nearly every type of learning game – just note that successful competitors will be required to attend ECGBL in order to present their games to the judges. [LEARN MORE]

James Paul Gee Game Design Award

Entries due: TBD 2021
Submission fee: Free
Details: Rounding out our list today is a relatively new awards program – the James Paul Gee Game Design Award. The official learning game competition of the Play Make Learn Conference, the awards celebrate newly released learning games that are fun, educational, and novel. Finalists are invited to showcase their game at the Play Make Learn Conference in Madison, Wisconsin – please note that a member or representative of your team must attend the conference if selected. [LEARN MORE]

More game-based learning goodness from the Filament Games Blog:
Digital Games for Remote Instruction
How to Promote Your Serious Game
Game-Based Learning at Scale

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