PSA Schools: Competitions

The PSA's Student Video Competition


2017 - "Fake News: Is this the end of facts?"

With more and more of us getting our news from social media, the term 'fake news' has grabbed popular consciousness in recent times. This year's competition aims to examine what fake news is and its consequences.

Hardly a day goes by without President Trump declaring someone guilty of fake news, while others attack him and the rest of the global political class of engaging in this activity. Some fake news is clearly false, but other samples of fake news often contain a grain of truth that leads them to gain greater impact. Often the term is used to attack another person's different opinion. The term has developed greater significance as we are now living in a time where access to impartial news is arguably more difficult, despite greater access to the internet. More people are getting their news from social media platforms where they may only be communicating with people from similar backgrounds with similar views. Simultaneously we are also seen to be living in the time of the 'End of Experts', where expert scientific knowledge is readily discounted. These trends have consequences for our society and democracy and point to a potential future where 'facts' in the traditional sense become meaningless.   

But, what are the consequences of this trend? Has our political life been damaged by the rise in fake news? How has it affected trust in our system, respect for our leaders and turnout at our elections? Or has fake news always been a part of political discourse, but its just that new technology has given it new life? Or is the rise in fake news a symptom of the so called experts failing to make accurate statements and predictions about the world around us? After all, political scientists failed to predict the outcome of the 2015 & 2017 general elections; the 2016 US Presidential election and the 2016 EU Referendum. Are we, as a society, returning to making judgements on our personal feelings and experiences rather than relying on expert opinion?

There is much fertile territory to explore in his subject and we look forward to your creative responses. 

The deadline for entries is 12 noon 30 October 2017.

Please take note that this competition is open to post-16 students who will be studying during the academic year 2017-18. Teams of no less than two and no more than four should submit a video of up to four minutes long. You do not need to use specialist high-tech equipment to make the videos, which can be filmed on smartphones and tablets. However, please do be aware of issues such as sound quality and shaky filming which may detract from the viewing experience. 

Entrants are encouraged to think creatively and to adopt a broad approach that challenges dominant assumptions and/or offers new perspectives. Short-listed teams will be invited to a jury meeting at the Houses of Parliament on the afternoon of the 7 November. The winners will have their award presented at the PSA Annual Awards on 5 December in central London and they will have the opportunity to undertake a week's work placement at the polling agency YouGov, who have kindly sponsored this year's competition.  

For more information and to submit your entry please contact Jamie Roberts via jamie.roberts@psa.ac.uk 

Click here to view and/or download the 2017 Student Short Video Competition poster


2016 - "Do you have to be Superman/Superwoman to be US President?"

In this year of a US Presidential election, the PSA Schools' Video Competition is turning its attention to America to examine the role of one of the the most powerful politicians in the world.  

Questions to be be explored may include: Is the US Presidency just too big a job for one person? What personal attributes do you need for this ultimate political leadership role? How does the US political system constrain the Presidency? Do you need different qualities to be US President as opposed to British Prime Minister?

The PSA, in conjunction with YouGov, is inviting teams of post-16 students who will be studying during the academic year 2016-17 to submit a video of no more than 4 minutes that explores the question: "Do you have to be Superman/Superwoman to be US President?"

The deadline for entries is 21 October 2016. THIS COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED. 

Click here for full competition details for 2016

Click here for how to upload and submit your entry


2015 - "Designing for Democracy – what would you propose?”

If you could design a democratic system from scratch what would you propose? 

The PSA, in conjunction with YouGov and the  Design Commission, is inviting teams of post-16 students who will be studying during the academic year 2015-16 to submit a video of no more than 4 minutes that explores the question: "Designing for Democracy - what would you propose?"

Click here for full competition details for 2015 (This competition is now closed)

Click here for how to upload and submit your entry

Suggested Tweets for Political Studies Association’s Student Short Video Competition


2014 - "Europe - in or out?"

Returning for the fourth year, the PSA has teamed up with YouGov to ask students to explore the question: "Europe - in or out?"

Click here for full competition details for 2014 (This competition is now closed)

Click here for how to upload and submit your entry.

The winners of the 2014 Student Short Video competition from Portsmouth Grammar School. 


2013 - "How much is an MP worth?"

Sponsored by IPSA, students were asked to explore the question: "How much is an MP worth?"


The winners of the 2013 Student Short Video competition from King's High School, Warwick. 

Click here for full competition details for 2013. (This competition is now closed)