2018 Illinois Student Photo Competition
Camera taking picture of students dancing
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Competition Details


Submissions open on August 1, 2018

Submissions deadline: November 16, 2018

Announcement of winners: December 7, 2018 (awards ceremony, Illini Union Courtyard Cafe)

Who can submit?

Entries must be submitted by undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled at the Urbana-Champaign campus, in good academic standing. Each person may submit up to six entries. Individual entries only please (no groups).

What should the image be?

The image submitted should portray learning experiences on campus or the immediate Urbana-Champaign area. This is an opportunity to show us how you learn at Illinois, what learning looks like for you, and how diverse learning experiences are on our campus!

What are category prizes?

Category prizes will be awarded to the best image that judges feel represents one of the sub-themes of the competition. While we encourage you to view the list of categories as a possible inspiration for your image-making, you will submit the image to the competition as a whole. Judges will determine the appropriateness of the image in representing one of the sub-theme categories. The grand prize and runners-up awards will be selected from overall entries. That means it is possible your photograph could win both the grand prize AND a category prize!

Submissions will be judged on three criteria:

  • Relevance to the This Learning Life theme overall and/or sub-themes
  • Originality
  • Visual Impact


Category prizes will be awarded to the winners of the best image representing each of the following sub-themes:

  • Learning with Technology (How technology helps me/us learn) - CITL

  • Studying Around Campus (Favorite study environment on campus or in the CU area) - CITL

  • Amazing Interactions (Many times, learning is better when done together) - LAS

  • Information Discovery – iSchool


The entrant must be the principal creator of the image. Submitting an image that is not created by the entrant is not permitted; all work must be original. Entrants are responsible for ensuring that recognizable persons in their photos have given their explicit permission to use their image.

What is required for submission?

  • Your name
  • Your Net ID
  • Your college and major
  • A 100-200 word narrative that describes the learning taking place in the image
  • Images should be the best quality that you can provide. Please make sure your image meets the following requirements:
    • Maximum file size of 100 MB
    • Minimum resolution of 300 ppi
    • Image must be at least 10 inches on the longest side
    • Image must be in RAW, TIFF, or high-quality JPEG or JPEG2 format (no PNG files please)
  • If your file fails to meet these criteria, we will ask that the necessary changes be made before accepting and processing your submission.
  • Please keep in mind that the grand prize winner, runners up and all sub-theme category winners will be printed and mounted for display at the awards ceremony, and may be used at other functions in print format. These will be printed at approximately 40 x 28 inches with the caption included.
  • You must accept the following license agreement that allows the University to display and provide access to your work.
    • I grant the University of Illinois non-exclusive and royalty-free permission to use my image and accompanying text in their original forms and/or modified forms for the purpose of promoting the competition and residential learning at the University of Illinois, and I have the necessary rights, permissions, and/or licenses to grant these rights to the University. I understand that this means that such materials, in their original forms and/or modified forms, may be incorporated in any and all media. If I wish to revoke permissions to use my image, I must do so in writing to the Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning. In addition, I agree to the license agreement for This Learning Life so that my image can be displayed within the CITL Web site or other online site.
  • If you are the copyright owner, by accepting the above license agreement, you still retain copyright to your work and do not give up the right to submit the work to publishers or other repositories. The University will clearly identify your name(s) as the author(s) or copyright owner(s) of the image, include a statement of your copyright, and will not make any alteration, other than as allowed by this license, to your submission. By accepting this license, you acknowledge that you have read and agreed to the terms of this agreement and all related CITL and University policies.
  • Complete the entry form separately for each image you submit. You may submit up to six entries.

Judging and Awards

  • A subset of submissions will be selected by judges as semi-finalists. Of these, the following awards will be given:
    • Grand prize: $250
    • 2 Runner up prizes: $50 each
    • Category (sub-theme) prizes (number to be determined): $50 each
  • Awards will be given at a ceremony held at a location to be determined, on December 7, 2018. Semi-finalists will also compete for a People’s Choice award ($50), which will be voted on by attendees of the ceremony.
  • All taxes and other costs associated with acceptance or use of the awarded prize(s) are the sole responsibility of the applicable winner. Winners may be required to complete IRS Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification.
  • The submission form will be open on August 1, 2018. Digital media files of entries, meeting the criteria stated above, must be submitted to This Learning Life no later than midnight, November 16, 2018.