February 16, 2016

The World of Images Intercollegiate Photo Contest: An Opportunity to Integrate ICT Profile Abilities into an Educational Activity

This text was initially published by Profweb under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 International licence, before Eductive was launched.

Each year, the Collegial Centre for Educational Materials Development (CCDMD) organizes the World of Images Intercollegiate Photo Contest. This contest is open to all college students, who can submit photos with the theme of their choosing. The contest aims to encourage the training of tomorrow’s photographers and documentarians by facilitating the production and distribution of high-quality artistic photographs or documentaries. Since the first edition in 2011–2012, nearly 10,000 photographs have been submitted to the contest by 1,114 students from more than 65 establishments in the college network.

Students are free to participate as part of a course or independently. That said, the contest is an excellent opportunity for teachers to organize an activity that promotes the development of abilities from the ICT Profile for College Students.

An Exemplary Educational Activity

Obviously, this is an activity that can be organized within the context of a photography course, but it can also be used in any course that has a field trip.

  • Are your students from social science (or any other career program dealing with the public) doing an on-site visit within the community?
  • Do your literature students need to go to the theatre?
  • Are your art students going to the museum?
  • Are your biology students visiting a nature site?
  • Are your students from a science program are visiting a site?
  • Are you organizing a class trip?

Everyone can take advantage of these opportunities to take pictures and submit them as part of the contest!

Pont noir, by Jean-Christophe Deshaies (Cégep Garneau) – Honorable Mention from the Jury – Intercollegiate Photo Contest 2014–2015. This photo of a bridge over the Saint-Charles River in Quebec City could have been taken within the context of an architecture, design or civil engineering course.

Paisible pissenlit, by Luka Groulx (Collège Ahunstic) – Finalist – Intercollegiate Photo Contest 2014–2015. This botanical-themed photo was taken by the photographer after a day at La Ronde amusement park, but it could have been an assignment from a biology teacher.

This activity can also be offered to students who are planning to conduct an in-person interview within the context of a research project. The photos can be taken in a studio… like the one at your college!

Here are four steps for organizing an activity:

1) Preparation

You students review documentation on their subject. They get ready for their outing or their meeting. What will there be to observe? Who are they going to meet?

Encourage them to review the contest rules and the evaluation criteria for the photos.

They then plan their report or their photo shoot. They prepare the interview questions or an observation grid. They need to have a game plan!

It’s also important for students to ensure that the have the right to take pictures wherever they are going. They need to know that if they are taking pictures of people, they need permission, whether oral or written. If they visit private locations, they need the authorization of the owner to take pictures. Finally, taking pictures of artwork is subject to intellectual property regulations.

2) On-site

Students should survey the layout of the site when they arrive. Where are the best vantage points? What interesting perspectives are available? They should also try to anticipate events that will provide opportunities for good shots.

Students should then do their setup: lighting, configuring the camera, staging, framing and perspective.

Then it’s time to take some pictures!

3) Back to HQ

When the students have returned home or to class, they should then transfer the photos to their computer and select the best shots and touch them up as needed. The final version of the file should be uncompressed in the best possible resolution, with the EXIF metadata intact.

They then prepare a fact sheet for each of the selected files (title, description, location and keywords).

4) Upload the files to World of Images

The students should create an account on World of Images, if they don’t already have one. Then they upload their files and fill in the fact sheet for each image, indicating the address where the photo was taken, if possible, which allows it to be geolocated.

Encourage them to pay attention to the quality of the language they use in the descriptions of the photos, since this is one of the acceptance criteria for the World of Images team.

Before submitting their photos to World of Images, they need to remember to click the checkbox to signal their intention to enter the contest!

Once the photos are submitted to World of Images, they are placed under the following Creative Commons licence: CC BY-NC-SA. Take advantage of the opportunity to discuss with them what this means.

Report on This Activity in Line with the ICT Profile

As you may have noticed, many of the ICT Profile objectives are covered by this activity. The following table summarizes the tasks associated with the skills of the ICT Profile that are targeted by the activity.

To access a variety of resources on the ICT Profile for College Students (testimonials, lesson plans, tutorials, etc), visit

The elements associated with the ICT Profile abilities that are targeted by the activity: Objectives 1.2 and 1.4, Task 2.1.2, Objectives 3.1, 3.2, 4.2, as well as Tasks 5.1.3, 5.4.1, 5.4.2 and 5.4.4.

The Intercollegiate Photo Contest: A Source of Motivation

Entering a contest can be motivating for students. The World of Images Intercollegiate Photo Contest is offering $3000 worth of prizes! That’s in addition to the possibility that their photos might be included in a professional-quality publication! For example, the 30 or so photos that made it to the finals last year were added to a collection for an annual exhibition. Close to 30 photos are also chosen by the contest organizers to create a poster or postcards that are used to promote the contest.

The participants receive the Jury’s feedback on their submission and learn the number of votes they received from Internet users. On the World of Images website, they have access to statistics, including the number of visits and downloads for their photos (some were downloaded more than 3,600 times!).

The deadline to submit photos for the 2015–2016 edition of the contest is March 16, 2016. Why not give it a shot?

Contraste, Paisible and Sous le même soleil. A series of three New Zealand landscapes by Audrey-Ann Brunelle (Collège de Maisonneuve) – Honourable Mention from the Jury – Intercollegiate Photo Contest 2014–2015. We’re not sure if they were taken on a class trip to New Zealand, but these magnificent photos could have been on a field trip!

The authors would like to thank Nicole Perreault, from the Réseau REPTIC, for her collaboration on this article.

About the authors

Catherine Rhéaume

Catherine Rhéaume is an editor and writer for Eductive (previously Profweb) since 2013. She also teaches physics at Cégep Limoilou. Her work for Eductive fosters her interest for technopedagogy and encourages her to try innovative teaching practices.

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