Unique Competition Prize Ideas for Students 2023

Looking for ways to motivate your students and make learning more exciting? Contests and competitions are a great way to engage students and inspire them to push their boundaries. But, the real challenge often lies in creating unique and interesting prize ideas for students that will truly capture their interest. 

In this blog post, I bring you all innovative prize ideas for competitions tailored especially for students, designed to stimulate their creativity, encourage academic excellence, and make their learning journey rewarding. 

Whether you’re an educator or a parent organizing a neighborhood contest, these prize ideas will surely make any competition an event to remember. Stay tuned as I unveil these exciting rewards!

competition prize ideas for students

Unique Competition Prize Ideas for Students 2023

Here is the detail of all the competition prize ideas for all students. From primary school students to university students, there is something for everyone to get inspired and motivated. 

For Primary & Middle School Students

#1. Traditional Toys and Puzzles

Traditional toys like puzzles or building blocks make fantastic competition prize ideas for primary & middle school students. They not only offer hours of fun but also stimulate young minds. 

So, what’s the catch? Easy! Just make sure you’re picking age-appropriate puzzles and toys. Opt for colorful, durable options that can endure the, let’s say, “enthusiastic” playstyle of young children.

For example, LEGO Education sets are perfect for fostering creativity, problem-solving skills, and teamwork among primary school students. Also, consider including a puzzle book or a Rubik’s cube in the prize pack to challenge their critical thinking abilities.

#2. Personalized Stationery Set

A personalized stationery set is another stellar idea for competition prizes. Not only does it make students feel special, but it also serves as an incentive to improve their handwriting and make writing more enjoyable. You can get creative with this one and add a personal touch by including the student’s name or favorite character on the stationery set.

Some great options for personalized stationery sets include custom notebooks, pencils, erasers, pens, and even rulers with fun designs. This prize idea is perfect for students in primary school as they are at an age where they are developing their writing skills and forming their own unique style.

#3. Interactive Science Kits

Interactive science kits make excellent competition prizes for those interested in encouraging a love for science and experimentation. These kits provide hands-on learning experiences and allow students to explore various scientific concepts in a fun and engaging way.

You can choose from various options, such as solar-powered cars, volcano-making kits, or crystal-growing kits. These prizes are sure to pique students’ curiosity and inspire them to learn more about the world around them.

#4. Art Supplies

Nothing beats a brand-new set of art supplies to get those creative juices flowing. Colored pencils, watercolor sets, and sketch pads can spark youngsters’ newfound love for art. 

What’s more, these school competition prize ideas for students are usually affordable, making it a win-win for everyone. From unleashing the next Picasso to simply giving kids a fun activity, art supplies are always a hit. 

#5. Virtual Experience

With the world becoming more virtual, why not offer students a unique experience as a competition prize? This can include anything from a virtual tour of an art gallery or museum to an interactive online workshop with experts in various fields. 

Not only will this prize expand their knowledge and interests, but it also allows them to learn from the comfort of their own homes.

#6. Stickers and Badges

For younger students, stickers and badges are always a hit. These prizes can be given for various achievements, such as completing a task, participating in a competition, or displaying positive behavior. Not only do they serve as an immediate reward, but they also act as a motivator for future tasks.

#7. Food Coupon

Who doesn’t love food? A coupon for a free meal or treat can be an exciting and unique prize idea for students. Whether it’s a pizza party, an ice cream sundae, or a trip to their favorite restaurant, this reward is sure to get kids excited about the competition. Also, it’s a great way to support local businesses and teach students the value of community.

For High School Students

#1. Tech Gadgets

High schoolers are always plugged in, right? So, headphones or Bluetooth speakers could be the bee’s knees for competition prize ideas for high school students. These prizes are sure to turn heads and generate interest in any competition. Keep in mind the range of options; you can go from affordable earbuds to high-end headphones, depending on your budget.

For instance, Apple AirPods or Beats by Dre headphones are popular with teenagers and would make great prizes for competition. You can also consider other tech gadgets like smartwatches, fitness trackers, or portable chargers.

#2. Gift Cards

When in doubt, go the gift card route. This gives teens the freedom to choose what they really want. You’re saying, “Hey, I trust your judgment!” Moreover, these cards can be for local bookshops, clothing stores, or even online platforms. You can also consider gift cards for popular food chains like Starbucks or McDonald’s, which are often favorites among high schoolers. 

#3. Experiential Rewards

Think outside the box and offer experiential rewards as prizes. This could include tickets to a concert or sporting event, a day at an amusement park, or even a zip-lining adventure. These types of prizes allow students to create lasting memories and try new things, making the competition even more exciting.

#4. College Scholarship Funds

Helping high school students plan for their future by offering college scholarship funds as a prize is fantastic. It not only encourages academic excellence but also relieves some of the financial burden that comes with pursuing higher education. You can set specific criteria for eligibility, such as a minimum GPA or essay submission on a predetermined topic.

For College Students

#1. Coffee Makers or Tumblers

Trust me, nothing screams “college” more than a constant need for coffee. A nifty coffee maker or a stylish tumbler can be heavenly competition prize ideas for college students. It’s both functional and trendy, ticking all the boxes for something they’d actually use. 

Moreover, you can also consider including a selection of different coffee flavors or a gift card to their favorite coffee shop as part of the prize pack. This adds more value to the prize and shows that you’ve put thought into it.

#2. Online Course Subscriptions

For college students, learning never stops; they always look for ways to expand their knowledge and skills. Offering a subscription to an online course or platform, such as Udemy or Skillshare, is a fantastic way to help them achieve their goals while also providing an exciting prize. You can tailor the subscription to align with their interests and future career goals.

#3. Fitness Memberships

Physical health is just as important as academic performance. A month-long gym membership or a series of yoga classes can encourage a balanced lifestyle. It’s a sneaky way to promote wellness, and most students won’t turn down a free opportunity to burn off some steam.

#4. Travel Vouchers

For students passionate about traveling, consider offering travel vouchers as a competition prize. This could be in the form of flight tickets, hotel stays, or even a package tour to a dream destination. It will not only encourage them to work hard but also allow them to explore and learn about different cultures and places.

#5. Internship Opportunities

Another great idea for college students is to offer internship opportunities as competition prizes. This allows them to gain valuable work experience in their field of study and make connections in the industry. 

You can partner with local businesses or organizations to provide internships that align with the student’s interests and career goals. It’s a win-win for both parties involved, as the business gains fresh perspectives and ideas while the student gains valuable experience. 

For University Students

#1. E-books or Online Courses

University students are often on the hunt for resources that can give them an edge in their field. Online competition prize ideas for students at this level could range from e-books to specialized online courses. Not only does this fuel their ongoing education, but it also allows them to explore niche interests they may not have considered before.

#2. Research opportunity

For students in research-based programs, offering the opportunity to work alongside a professor or researcher can be an exciting prize. This will expand their knowledge and experience and provide valuable networking opportunities for future career prospects.

#3. Career Development Workshops

Yes, free competition prize ideas for students can also be incredibly valuable. Consider offering a seat in a career development workshop or a consultation with a career advisor. It can provide crucial networking opportunities and skills that can last a lifetime. After all, university isn’t just about hitting the books; it’s also about preparing for the future.

#4. Trip Package

If you have the budget, offering an all-expenses-paid trip package as a competition prize can be a game-changer. This could include flights, hotel stays, and activities at a travel destination of your choice. It’s an unforgettable experience that will reward students for their hard work and allow them to take a break from their busy academic schedules.

#5. Networking Events

Lastly, networking events are an excellent prize option for university students. This could include tickets to industry conferences or workshops where they can connect with professionals and gain insight into their fields of interest. It’s a valuable opportunity that could open doors for future internships or job opportunities.

There you have it! Whether you’re aiming for cheap prize ideas for students or something a bit more luxurious, this list has got you covered. Tailor your prizes to the age group and watch participation soar. 

17 Best Student Contest & Competition Ideas

Having the prize ideas is not enough, you also need exciting concepts for your competition. Here are 17 of the best student contest and competition ideas that will get students excited to participate:

#1. Science Fair Showdown

Best student contest and competition ideas for high school students often include science fairs. Encourage budding scientists to unleash their creativity by exploring intriguing hypotheses and presenting their findings. Provide a platform for them to showcase their experiments and innovations, fostering a passion for science that may lead to groundbreaking discoveries in the future.

#2. Spelling Bee Spectacle

A classic among the list of competitions for school students, spelling bees are a fantastic way to challenge young minds. These competitions not only improve language skills but also boost confidence. Students can showcase their vocabulary prowess, competing against peers to spell even the trickiest words precisely.

#3. Debating Duels

Debates are excellent competitions for school students. They hone critical thinking, public speaking, and research skills. Encourage students to pick sides on thought-provoking topics and engage in spirited debates. It’s an intellectually stimulating competition that fosters effective communication.

#4. Creative Writing Showdown

For those who have a flair for words, a creative writing competition is among the fun competition ideas for school. It unleashes imagination and storytelling abilities. Students can craft captivating narratives, poetry, or essays, showcasing their literary talents and captivating readers with their words.

#5. Coding Challenges

In the era of technology, coding competitions are a must-have in the online competitions for students with prizes 2023 category. Encourage students to dive into the world of programming, solving complex problems and developing innovative software solutions. These challenges nurture coding skills and prepare students for future careers in technology.

#6. Artistic Expressions

Art competitions are perfect for fostering creativity. Let students unleash their inner artists by participating in painting, drawing, or sculpture contests. Such competition ideas for students online encourage them to experiment with different mediums and styles, allowing their artistic talents to shine.

#7. Math Olympiad

A staple in the realm of best student contest and competition ideas for high school students, math Olympiads challenge young mathematicians to solve intricate problems. These competitions promote logical thinking and problem-solving skills while making math exciting and engaging.

#8. Model United Nations (MUN)

MUN competitions simulate diplomatic negotiations and debates on global issues. They provide a unique learning experience, encouraging students to explore international affairs, develop diplomatic skills, and engage in constructive dialogues. MUN is among the list of English competitions for school students that promote global awareness.

#9. Quiz Bowl Bonanza

Quiz bowls are a thrilling way to test general knowledge and quick thinking. Students compete in fast-paced quiz competitions, answering questions on various subjects. It’s an exciting and educational fun competition idea for schools that keep participants on their toes.

#10. Environmental Challenges

Incorporate eco-consciousness with environmental competition. These contests encourage students to brainstorm solutions for pressing environmental issues. From recycling initiatives to conservation projects, these online competitions for students with prizes 2023 promote a sustainable future.

#11. Business Plan Battle

For aspiring entrepreneurs, business plan competitions are a fantastic outlet. Students can develop and present innovative business ideas, enhancing their entrepreneurial skills. This is among the competition ideas for students online that can inspire future business leaders.

#12. Drama and Theater Contests

Theater competitions allow students to showcase their acting and theatrical talents. They can participate in drama festivals, improv battles, or even scripted performances. It’s an excellent way to nurture creativity and boost self-confidence.

#13. Music Competitions

Music competitions offer a stage for budding musicians and vocalists. Encourage students to participate in solo or ensemble contests, showcasing their musical prowess. These contests can help them grow as artists and performers.

#14. History Bee

History bees are a riveting way to explore the past. Students compete to answer questions about historical events, figures, and facts. It’s an educational yet exciting, fun competition idea for schools that promotes a love for history.

#15. Film and Video Challenges

In the age of digital media, film, and video competitions are a hit. Students can create short films, documentaries, or animations, showcasing their storytelling and filmmaking skills. These contests provide a creative outlet for aspiring filmmakers.

#16. Moot Court Competition

If you are running a Law College or Law Professor at any University and looking forward to organizing a student competition, consider Moot Court Competitions. These competitions simulate court proceedings and challenge law students to argue cases precisely and skillfully. 

#17. Photography Contests

Photography contests are perfect for nurturing an eye for detail and creativity. Students can participate in various categories, such as landscape, portrait, or wildlife photography, showcasing their photography skills and perspectives. 

You can engage students in various fields by incorporating these diverse best-student contests and competition ideas. From science to the arts, these competitions foster learning and inspire passion and creativity. 

How to Organize a Student Competition?

Organizing a student competition, whether online or offline, requires careful planning and execution to ensure its success. Below, we’ll outline the essential steps to organize a student competition that engages participants, promotes learning, and leaves a lasting impression.

Define Your Objectives

The first step in organizing any student competition is clearly defining your objectives. What do you aim to achieve with the competition? Are you focusing on skill development, knowledge enhancement, or simply fostering a sense of camaraderie among students? Understanding your goals will guide every decision you make throughout the process.

Choose the Competition Type

There are various competitions, such as academic, sports, creative, or entrepreneurial. Select a competition type that aligns with your objectives and resonates with your target audience. Ensure that it caters to the interests and talents of the participants.

Set a Date and Venue

Choose a suitable date and venue if you’re organizing an offline competition. Ensure that the location is accessible, safe, and well-equipped for the competition’s requirements. Secure any necessary permits or permissions well in advance.

For online competitions, determine the duration of the event. Will it be a one-time event or span over several days or weeks? Set clear start and end dates and communicate them to participants.

Create Rules and Guidelines

Establish comprehensive rules and guidelines for the competition. Clarify eligibility criteria, judging criteria, and any specific rules participants must follow. Ensure that the rules are fair, transparent, and easy to understand.

Registration and Promotion

Promote the competition widely to attract participants. Use various channels such as social media, school newsletters, and websites to reach potential contestants. Create an online registration system for ease of sign-up. Offline competitions can use paper registration forms.

Assemble a Competent Team

Form a team of organizers, judges, and volunteers who will help execute the competition smoothly. Assign specific roles and responsibilities to each team member to ensure efficient coordination.

Prepare Resources

Gather all the necessary resources and materials required for the competition. This includes question papers, equipment, prizes, and any promotional materials. Ensure that everything is ready well in advance of the event.

Conduct the Competition

On the day of the competition, arrive at the venue early to set up and make final preparations. Provide clear instructions to participants and ensure they are comfortable and informed throughout the event. Appoint volunteers to assist with any queries or issues that may arise.

If it’s an online competition, have a dedicated platform or website where participants can access the necessary information, submit their entries, and interact with organizers and fellow participants. Ensure technical support is available to resolve any issues promptly.

Evaluation and Judging

If the competition involves judging, assemble a panel of qualified judges who are impartial and well-versed in the criteria. Ensure a fair and unbiased evaluation process. Provide feedback to participants after the competition to promote learning and improvement.

Award Ceremony

Host an award ceremony to recognize and celebrate the winners and participants. Prepare certificates, trophies, or prizes as tokens of appreciation. Make the ceremony memorable and enjoyable for all attendees.

For online competitions, announce the winners on your competition platform or website. Send digital certificates or prizes to the winners, and consider hosting a virtual celebration or recognition event.

Collect Feedback

After the competition, gather feedback from participants, judges, and volunteers. Use this feedback to evaluate the event’s success and identify areas for improvement. Learning from each competition will help you organize better ones in the future.

Promote Learning and Growth

Lastly, emphasize the educational aspect of the competition. Share results and insights with participants, schools, or institutions involved. Encourage participants to continue honing their skills or knowledge in the competition’s subject area.

For more practical knowledge, check out the below video content on “How to Organize Any Tournament in your School.”

FAQs on Competition Prize Ideas for Students

Can you do giveaways for school students?

Yes, you can do giveaways or prizes for school students as part of a competition. Whether it is a back-to-school giveaway or a prize for winning a competition, giveaways can be an excellent way to motivate and engage students. This could include books, school supplies, gift cards, or other items that support learning and development.

How can I fund my student competition?

You can seek sponsorships from companies or organizations promoting education or youth development. You can also charge an entry fee to participants or sell tickets to the award ceremony to cover the competition’s costs. Additionally, you can apply for grants or seek donations from individuals or businesses.

What types of prizes are suitable for a student competition?

Prizes that align with the competition type and promote student learning and growth are ideal. This could include educational materials, experiences (such as internships or mentorship opportunities), scholarships, or cash prizes. Consider consulting with educators or experts in the competition’s subject area for suggestions on suitable prizes.


Now you have a complete idea of the various types of prizes and competitions for students. From toys to trips, from academic challenges to artistic expressions, there’s something for every student. These competitions not only provide an opportunity for students to showcase their skills and talents but also promote personal growth and development. So, choose a competition that resonates with your interests, and join in on the fun! Happy competing!

Julia Nancy
Julia Nancy

I have vast experience arranging online voting contests for hundreds of clients worldwide in the last 8 years. I also helped countless clients to win their online competitions. Here, on royalvotes.com, I am just sharing knowledge from my experiences. If you need any help regarding the online contest, email me at julia@royalvotes.com