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How to Get Awards for Your Learning Game

Filament Games | Educational Game Developer

Industry awards are a great 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.” 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

Deadline: February 14, 2020

Cost: Free

Details: 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 awards program highlights nominees in eight categories: Most Innovative, Best Gameplay, Best Learning Game, Most Significant Impact, Best XR for Change Experience, Best Student Game, People’s Choice Award and Game of the Year. Learn more about the program and check out last year’s winners on the Games for Change website.

Serious Play Awards

Deadline: Digital games – February 15, 2020

Cost: Large Studio (25+) / Corporation/ Medical Institution/ Publisher – $400; Mid-sized Studio (10 – 25 employees) – $350; Museum/NonProfit/NGO/University Studio – $300; Independent Studio (9 or fewer employees) – $250; Ed Tech Teacher, Individual – $200; College, High School Student – $150

Details: As its name suggests, the Serious Play Awards are all about celebrating outstanding games for education and training – in 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 and apply today on their official website.

Tech & Learning Awards of Excellence

Deadline: ~October 2020

Cost: $595

Details: Tech & Learning’s Awards of Excellence have been around for more than 35 years – but there’s never been a better time to apply than the present! Each year, ten finalists are divided into three categories – Best use of a product in a classroom, Best use of a product in a school, and Best use of a product in a district – and invited to a special reception at TCEA. Winners are announced at the conference and featured in the May issue of Tech and Learning!

Serious Games Showcase & Challenge

Deadline: ~September 2020

Cost: $250

Details: A much-loved 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. Featuring seven categories – Best Government Game, Best Business Game, Best Student Game, Best XR Game, Innovation Award, Students’ Choice Game, and People’s Choice Game – finalists are invited to exhibit their game in front of an audience of more than 17,000 attendees at the SGS&C booth.


Deadline: ~January 2021

Cost: SIIA Members & Non-profit Organizations – $545; Non-members – $1095

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 educational technology industries. A word of warning though – the cost to entry is high on this one, particularly if you’re not a member.

The EdTech Digest EdTech Awards

Deadline: Early entry – ~July 2020; Regular entry – ~September 2020; Extended entry – ~October 2020

Cost: Early entry – $199; Regular entry – $249; Extended entry – $299

Details: EdTech Digest’s EdTech awards highlights cool tools, inspiring leaders, and trends across the K-12, higher education, and skills/workforce sectors. Offering dedicated games for learning/simulation solution and VR/AR (virtual reality, augmented reality) solution categories, winning an EdTech Award can serve as a great way to improve awareness around your game or product.

Reimagine Education Awards

Deadline: ~September 2020

Cost: 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.

The Webby Awards

Deadline: Regular entry – ~November 2020; Extended entry – ~February 2021

Cost: Early entry – $365; Extended entry – $395

Details: Honoring the best of the internet, the Webby Awards are an annual celebration of the year’s best 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. Learn more about the various categories and find out how you can submit your game on their official website!

International Educational Games Competition

Deadline: April 27, 2020

Cost: 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. With fully-developed games and in-development titles each sporting their own prize category, 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.

Irish Conference on Game-Based Learning

Deadline: Early entry – January 22, 2020; Regular entry – February 22, 2020

Cost: Free

Details: Already planning on attending the Irish Conference on Game-Based Learning? Then you may want to consider submitting a proposal to demo your game at the show. One lucky iGBL exhibitor will take home a $50 prize for “Best Game Demo” – and if you also present at the event, you can win another €50 prize for “Best Presentation Overall.”

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