Contests and Awards

California College Media Association

2019 CCMA Excellence in Student Media

Divisions & Categories

  • Division A: Publications at four-year colleges or universities with enrollments of 10,000 students or more
  • Division B: Publications at four-year colleges or universities with enrollments under 10,000 students
  • Division C: Publications at community colleges


Regardless of frequency; print or online


  • Submit three different days’ complete editions for categories No. 1 and No. 16.
  • For print publications, submit PDFs of the printed page and highlight the item to be judged (i.e., border around story, headline, photo, etc.), or in the case of work published online only, submit the URL linked to the website, and submit a screenshot of the online entry for the CCMA awards presentation.
  • For online publications, submit URL with the link to the specific item to be judged, as well as a screenshot of the entry for the CCMA awards presentation.
  1. Best Newspaper (submit 3 different publication days’ complete editions)
  2. Best Newspaper Website (submit website URL and one representative screenshot)
  3. Best News Series (submit up to 5 articles in a series)
  4. Best Breaking News Story
  5. Best Non-Breaking News Story (investigative, human interest, etc.)
  6. Best Feature Story (any subject; e.g., news, sports, arts & entertainment, etc.)
  7. Best Editorial (unsigned OK, but entry must have a student’s name attached)
  8. Best Newspaper Column (i.e., sports, arts & entertainment, etc.)
  9. Best Arts & Entertainment Story
  10. Best Sports Story
  11. Best News Photograph
  12. Best Sports Photograph
  13. Best Features Photograph
  14. Best Photo Illustration
  15. Best Photo Series (minimum 3 photos on same subject)
  16. Best Overall Newspaper Design (submit 3 different publication days’ complete editions)
  17. Best Newspaper Front Page Design
  18. Best Newspaper Inside Page/Spread Design
  19. Best Headline Portfolio (3 headlines by one person; include story with headline)
  20. Best Infographic
  21. Best Illustration/Cartoon
  22. Best Special Issue/Section (could include back-to-school or orientation issues; not eligible for Best Newspaper category)
  23. Best Multimedia Presentation (submit URL of specific presentation; must be stand-alone story or series that makes use of multiple media: i.e., audio slideshows, video, Flash presentations, photo galleries, etc.).
  24. Best Social Media Platform
  25. Best Use of Social Media for Single Story (submit summary paragraph — 250 words maximum — explaining subject, process and result of how social media was used; provide links (i.e., examples) that demonstrate how social media was effectively used. Contestants may create a Storify of examples or the whole story package and submit the link.)
  26. Best Social Media for Single Event
  27. Best Interactive Graphic
  28. Best Podcast
  29. Best Mobile Site/App
  30. Best News Video (Submit URL of video and screenshot of opening scene; can be stand-alone story or part of a package)
  31. Best Non-News Video (e.g., arts & entertainment, sports, features, etc.; submit URL of video and screenshot of opening scene; can be stand-alone story or part of a package)


Either affiliated or not affiliated with a campus newspaper; print or online. One division in this category that includes schools with more than 10,000 students, under 10,000 students and community colleges.


  • A school may submit more than one entry in the Best Magazine category (see No. 1).
  • Submit PDFs of the work or, in the case of work published online-only, submit URLs linked to the website and screenshots. Highlight the item to be judged with a border (i.e., story, photo, etc.).
  1. Best Magazine (submit one entire magazine)
  2. Best Magazine Story
  3. Best Magazine Column (i.e., sports, arts & entertainment, etc.)
  4. Best Magazine Cover Design
  5. Best Magazine Inside Page/Spread Design i.e., news, sports, arts & entertainment, features, etc.)
  6. Best Magazine Photo
  7. Best Magazine Photo Series (minimum 3 photos on same subject)
  8. Best Magazine Website


  • All entries must have been published between Dec. 8, 2017 and Dec. 7, 2018. All entries must be uploaded by Dec. 7, 2018, at 9 p.m. PDT.
  • For all other categories, limit the number of entries to NO MORE THAN ONE per news organization for each category.
  • The same entries may not be submitted in more than one category.
  • Entry forms must be completely filled out and uploaded properly. An incomplete entry form or improperly uploaded entry will result in disqualification.
  • Remember: A student’s name must be listed for every entry except the Best Newspaper and Best Magazine (Nos. 1) categories or Best Special Issue/Section (No. 22) category.
  • Multiple entries by the same individual in the same category will be disqualified unless one of the entries is a double byline. However, an individual may submit entries in multiple categories.
  • If the same item (i.e., story, photo, advertisement) is entered in more than one newspaper, magazine and/or online category, it will be disqualified from all categories.
  • Entries may be accompanied by support statements, including any impact on the school/community as a result of publication of the items contained in the entries submitted. Any written statements must be limited to 250 words.
  • All entries should reflect the work of enrolled students at the time of publication at the college or university, unless otherwise credited.
  • There must not be mandatory review of content by an adviser before publication (i.e., work done as a class assignment may not be entered in the contest).
  • The judges reserve the right to modify the awards program at any time. If, at the discretion of the judges, there are insufficient quantity or quality of entries in a category, prizes or prize levels may not be awarded in that category, or categories may be combined.
  • The decision of the judges is final.

PAYMENT: Membership dues for CCMA are $200 for 2018-19, which includes entry in the 2019 CCMA Excellence in Student Media contest. You can enter the contest before payment is received; however, your payment must be received by Jan. 25, 2019, for your school’s entries to be eligible for the awards.

Address QUESTIONS to:
Michael Chute, vice president
CCMA Excellent in Student Media contest



Entries to the 2019 CCMA Excellence in Student Media contest will be submitted using BetterBNC Media Awards Platform.

Below are directions for preparing and submitting entries. If you have questions, please contact Michael Chute at (951) 552-8721, or

IMPORTANT: BetterBNC is optimized for the Google Chrome browser; and Firefox for PC and Macintosh/Apple. Please have a recent version downloaded and installed for the best contest experience.

The deadline for all entries is Dec. 7, 2018.

  1. Login.
  2. Go to
  3. Click contestant login
  4. Select the appropriate contestant type:
  5. If you are the single point of contact for your organization, select Contestant Manager, then skip to “d. Contestant Manager Login”.
  6. If you have received an email authorizing you to submit entries on behalf of your media organization, select “Authorized Entrant” on the log in page, then skip to “e. Authorized Entrant Login” below
  7. If you are an individual submitting your own entries (including non-members and freelancers), please see the “Open Call Contestant Only” instructions below
  8. Contestant Manager Login:
  9. Select the contest you would like to enter
  10. Select your Media Organization
  11. Enter your password**
  12. Click “Login”

**Note: If it is your first time logging into your account, use the temporary password: bnc (lower case). After you log in using that temporary password, the system will require you to update your password. Going forward (including future years) you will log in with the password you set.

If the designated Contestant Manager should leave your media organization, please contact your Contest Administrator to have the contact info in your account updated.

Authorized Entrant Login:

  1. Select the contest you would like to enter
  2. Select your Media Organization
  3. Enter your email address
  4. Enter your password
  5. Click “Login”

Open Call Login:

  1. Click “Open Call Login” in the blue bar at the top of the page
  2. If you already have an Open Call Contestant account, enter your email address and password, then click “Login” and skip to section “g. Request to make entries in a contest” below
  3. If you do not already have an Open Call Contestant account, click
  4. “Create your Open Call account”
  5. Fill out the form
  6. Click “Submit” at the bottom of the page

Once you fill out the form to create your Open Call Contestant account, the system will send you a validation email with a link that must be clicked before you can log into your account.

  1. Request to make entries in a contest (Open Call Only):
  2. Hover over the red “Open Call Contestant” text in the blue bar at the top of the page
  3. Select “My Contests” in the menu that appears
  4. In the “Available Contests” section, check the box next to the contest you would like to enter
  5. Hover over the red “Open Call Contestant” text again
  6. Select “Manage Entries”

Submit Entries

  1. Click “Submit Entry” from the Manage Entries page
  2. Select a Division (group of Categories)
  3. Select a Category
  4. Select the Media Organization where the entry was published or performed (Open Call Only)
  5. Enter the entry headline or title
  6. Add entry content (may vary by category)
  • To upload digital file attachments (other than audio/video), click “Browse”, navigate to the desired file, and then click “Open”. Allowed file types are PDF, DOC/DOCX, TXT, JPG, GIF, and PNG. To upload additional attachments to a single entry, click the “Browse and Attach More Files” button. BetterBNC will allow up to about a 20MB file, however, we suggest keeping your files around 5MB in case the judges have a slow connection. For files larger than 20MB, you can click the “RealView” icon on the Submit Entry page to create a free account, upload your files, and then copy and paste the URL into the URL field on the Submit Entry page. You may also use a similar 3rd-party website that provides hosting services (,, etc.)
  • To add web/audio/video content, copy and paste the content’s URL address into the provided Website URL field. To host your content online, either upload it to a free streaming content website (e.g.YouTube) or talk to your IT person about adding it to your stations/publications website. Make sure the content will be accessible online throughout the duration of the contest and awards process. Here are some examples of free streaming content websites where you can upload audio and video content: Audio:,; Video:,
  • IMPORTANT: Please be sure that items are not behind a paywall or a password-protected area. If they are, you must provide username/password info in the Comments section of your entry. Judges may disqualify your entry if work samples are inaccessible.
  1. Add Comments
  2. Enter Credits
  3. Click “Submit Entry”

For hardcopy/mail-in entry categories, print and attach the entry label (which automatically appears after each entry is submitted) to each hardcopy item and follow contest shipping instructions (contact the contest administrator for more info).

Pay for Entries

  1. When all entries are submitted log into your account
  2. Navigate to the Manage Entries page
  3. Click “Calculate Entry Fees”
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to pay for your entries