All entries must begin with 5 seconds of white text on a black screen featuring the following:

  • School Code (Not School Name)

  • Name of Contest

  • Names of every student on the entry

The 5 second slate will NOT be counted as part of the work and will not count against the time limit of the piece. Un-slated entries will be disqualified.

All entries must be in Quicktime .MOV or .MP4 format (H.264 preferred) and submitted on a flash drive that can be read by a Macintosh. The ONLY file on that flash drive must be the entry. Only one entry per drive allowed. Please check all entries before submission. Entries that cannot be played will be disqualified. The file should be named according to the following convention: (or .mp4)

The following things could result in disqualification:

  • Labeling: Unlabeled and/or un-slated entries will be disqualified and not judged.

  • Contest Criteria: Entries must meet all the criteria of the entered contest (i.e. themes, formats, category, etc.)

  • Missing Deadline: The clock in the Oklahoma room is the official clock. Each contest will have a deadline and a dedicated bin at the official submission table in the big edit room. At each deadline, the official timekeeper will close the bin and deliver it to the judges. Once the lid on the bin is closed, the contest is irrevocably closed. Any entries submitted after this point will be disqualified for awards, but will still receive a critique if submitted within 30 minutes of the deadline.

  • Content: Students are reminded to create content that is appropriate for screening in front of an audience of students and teachers. Gratuitous use of profanity, violence, and/or sexual content will result in disqualification.

  • Teacher assistance: While ASB allows teachers to advise and teach their students as needed, any teacher editing or shooting for their kids will cause that entry to be disqualified. In other words, teachers can not touch the camera, or the editing software. The only exception to this rule is the Earlybird Madness contest.

  • On-site contests must be created during the event. Any material created beforehand will disqualify an on-site entry.

  • Entries that include music or content that the student or school does not have the rights or permission to use will be disqualified.

At the end of the awards ceremony we will announce the school that placed first in the most contests, and that school will take home the traveling "4State Sweepstakes" trophy, which they will bring back the following year.  Note:  Tie breaker will be the school that places highest in "Spot Feature."

In the spirit of full disclosure, we feel it is important to let you know that all contests at the 2018 ASB 4-State Conference (including all contest rules and prompts) is being planned and executed without the assistance of, input from, or inside knowledge of any teacher or student attending the conference. While several attending teachers will be helping to plan the logistics of the non-contest parts of the conference and the breakout session, they will in no way be involved in the planning or judging of contests, or the interpretation of contest rules.


Upload Contests

Segments produced between November 7, 2017 and October 31, 2018 are eligible. The $50 school registration fee included entries into upload contests, 76 hour challenges, and Earlybird Madness. Schools competing in upload contests must submit their entries online by 11:59PM CST on Friday, November 2nd 2018.

Broadcast stories under 4 minutes, providing coverage of a person, topic, or event. This is a journalism contest. Stories should adhere to journalistic standards and ethics and demonstrate strong shooting, editing, writing, and overall storytelling. One entry per school.

4 - 8 minutes. Gratuitous use of profanity, violence, and/or sexual content will not be eligible for award or screening, but will receive a critique. Entries that include music or content that the student or school does not have the rights or permission to use will be disqualified.

This is a wide-open production category, with a time limit of no more than 3 minutes. The first objective for judges is to find real humor—something clever, well-produced, and well-played.  The entries may be parodies, satires, original skits, not necessarily journalistic in nature. Originality will get extra consideration. One entry per school.

76-Hour Challenges  

Contest prompts/songs/props will be posted online at 11AM CST on Nov. 7, 2018.  Entries on flash drives must be dropped off at the University Plaza Hotel by 5 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 10.

Entries must be 2-5 minutes. Credits and opening titles DO count against the 5 minute limit.  Judges will look for films that meet all prompts and prop requirements, and also tell a great story.  Audio and video quality will be important, but story comes first.  Tell a strong story.  Plots about suicide, gratuitous violence, or anything beyond what would normally get a “PG” rating should be avoided.  Conference officials will not screen any content that crosses the line for a general, student and teacher audience.  TWO ENTRIES PER SCHOOL.  STUDENTS MAY ONLY BE ON ONE ENTRY.

Time limit: 2 minutes. Your broad theme will be posted online at 11AM CST on Nov. 7, 2018. All aspects of the story must be shot and edited between that time and the deadline at 5PM on Saturday, Nov 10th. Stories should adhere to journalistic standards and ethics and demonstrate strong shooting, editing, writing, and overall storytelling. One entry per school.

Earlybird Madness

This optional contest runs from 12:00 - 5:00 p.m. on Saturday Nov. 10.  Schools may enter two teams, but students may only be on one team.  Teachers may participate with their students in any way you want.  At 12:00 p.m. teams will receive a short prompt and contest requirements.  Final entries should be 2 minutes maximum.  TWO ENTRIES PER SCHOOL.  STUDENTS MAY ONLY BE ON ONE ENTRY.  TEACHERS ARE CONSIDERED TEAM MEMBERS AND MAY PARTICIPATE IN ANY WAY YOU CHOOSE.



ASB will provide tables as a "home base" for each school, plus electrical power to the tables. Students entered in contests which require editing on Sunday will edit in the OKLAHOMA room. Teachers may be present in the area to teach and advise, but are not allowed to do any hands-on work during the on-site contests.

Teachers are responsible for providing everything you will need at your table for your students to edit: flash drives, cables, chargers, power strips, extension cords, etc. You must label every piece of equipment you bring with your school. Flash drives will be returned at the closing ceremony.

All contests will begin with a contest briefing in KANSAS A. See each contest description or your contest planner for specific limits on number of entries per school. All entries must be submitted to the appropriate bin at the official timekeeper's table in the OKLAHOMA room.

Novice Contests

Novice contests are limited to first-year broadcast / film students. Every student listed and participating in a novice contest must be in their very first media/broadcast/video and film production class. Regular contests are open to ANY and ALL, including first year students. In other words, students are not limited to novice contests if they are in their first year of media classes.

This is a novice contest, limited only to students in their first year of broadcast/film classes. Schools may enter two teams of up to four first-year students. Teams will receive a theme or “focus statement” they will turn into a 60-second silent movie. Teams are reminded to stick to the theme as much as possible, but creativity is certainly encouraged.  Anyone can be used as actors or extras. No effects of any kind may be used.  This means no transitions, no captions, no titles, no slow motion or fast motion, NO EFFECTS.  Your editing is cuts-only.  This emphasizes shooting for continuity in the field.  In addition, you may not make signs to help the plot along.  You may use signs you find at your shooting location.  Judges will look for storytelling that makes sense, has continuity in shots/edits, and for some kind of impact at the end to tie it all up.  They will especially watch for a strong beginning-middle-end.

Schools may enter two teams of up to three students.  A general theme or genre or title and/or required elements will be given to the teams.  You may bring your own music tracks (non-copyrighted), sound effects, and you may cast anyone at the conference in the video. The final entry should run 45 - 60 seconds.

Schools may enter two teams of up to four first-year students.  A topic will be given, and teams will be asked to plan, shoot and edit a 30-second PSA.  You may use any non-copyrighted music that you want. You may use anyone from your school as actors as needed.  Note: This is not a commercial.  

Varsity Contests

Schools may enter up to three teams of up to four students.  This is one of the more challenging of our contests.  There will be general guidelines given at the meeting, but creativity is encouraged in this one.  Music (non-copyrighted) may be added, effects may be used, and again, creativity is the key in this one, as well as telling a story in a ridiculously short amount of time. Speaking of time, entries that go over 5 seconds by even ONE second will not be allowed to win an award. Your 5 second slate does not count against your entry, obviously.

Schools may enter two teams of up to four students, with two students serving as the on-camera anchors, and the other two helping with shooting, script, and overall production.  Teams will receive wire copy and have to write a 60 second script, deciding which stories to prioritize, which to leave out if necessary.  The final entry may not be edited.  Turn in a live-to-tape, one-take, one-shot performance.  Begin with the anchors introducing themselves “with a news update,” and at the end, finish with “For ASB, I’m (name) and I’m (name).  Thanks for watching.”  Judges will look for strong, conversational scripts, order of stories presented, storytelling, transitions, and professionalism.  Teams are reminded to find a location themselves, and to be aware of lighting and audio quality.  Those elements will not carry as much weight as content, but they can make a difference in a close contest.  Submit one flash drive per entry.

This is an individual event for the solo student journalist who can do it all. Everyone will be given a prompt or theme when this contest kicks off and students must find a story, shoot, and edit a 60-90 second package before the deadline. Teachers may help come up with story ideas but NO ONE else may touch the camera or computer that the student is using to complete their story..  Each school is allowed up to 3 individual entries.

Schools may enter two teams of up to two students. Each team will be given a thumb drive with soundbites and b-roll. They will also be given a list of facts about the story that are not present in the sound bites. Their job is edit together a complete broadcast news or feature story, complete with a student's voice over, featuring selected content from the provided fact sheet. Your finished package will be judged on your ability to write for broadcast, remain objective, and create an engaging edit.

Schools may enter two teams of up to two students.  The assignment will be to take video clips, sound effects, additional dialog, and music provided on a flash drive to edit, sound mix, and color correct a short movie scene. You may only use the material and assets on the flash drive provided. No additional assets should be used. No minimum or maximum time required. Creativity is encouraged.

This is an all-day contest, and schools may only enter one team of up to five students.  The teams will receive a script with the first two scenes, which they must shoot.  The dialogue and directions should be closely followed.  Judges will decide if teams go off-script too far.  Then, each team will write and shoot the third and final scene in any way they see fit. Thus, “Finish the Film.”  The final entry should run no longer than 4 minutes.  You may use any non-copyrighted music you want, and please pay attention to sound and video quality.  The script you receive will not require you to leave the hotel.  It is up to you and your teachers if you do go off-site.

This category provides opportunities for creativity in your storytelling.  Teams will receive a download link to several songs. Each team must select one and only one song to create a music video. Teams can add up to 30 seconds of non-musical content to help set the stage, or tie up the video. The songs can be edited for length, but judges will determine if too much was cut.  Limit, two entries per school. Teams can consist of no more than 4 students. 

This shooting competition is all about b-roll. Teams of two compete to show off their shooting skills. Teams will be given a prompt at the beginning of the contest. Then they must shoot 7-10 compelling shots. Entries will be judged on composition, quality of nat sound, and their ability to tell a story with only 7-10 shots. All shots must contain natural sound. Up to two teams per school may enter.

Schools may enter two teams of up to two students.  Students will need to find an audio story, based on instructions given at the contest meeting.  The final story should be 45-60 seconds long, and include natural sound, sound bites, with strong reporter narration and script.  Judges will look for strong writing, including transitions and attributions, as well as nat. sound.  The final story should be exported to a flash drive as an MP3, WAV, or Quicktime file. To make this fair for everyone, teams CANNOT do a story about anyone they know or have met before. The intention of this rule is to keep local schools from having an unfair advantage.

Schools may enter one team of three to four.  Teams will draw recording times at the meeting in KANSAS A. Then they will receive their 5 topics currently in the sports news the day of the contest, and they will be required to cover at least 3 of the topics in their 5-minute round table discussion.  Their discussion will be recorded on video by conference staff.  NOTE:  You are doing this discussion like it’s being simulcast on radio and TV.  One of the three students in the group should act as the main host, introducing the show and its two other participants.  Note:  Name your show whatever you want.  But use actual student names in the introductions. Judges will look for lively, interesting, informed talk about the topics, and it is more than fine to include debate, humor, sports references, etc.  There will be a silent, visual countdown of 10 seconds at the end of the five minutes so the host can properly wrap up the show.  Notes are allowed.

Schools may enter one team of up to four students.  Teams will receive an assignment and have all day to file their story.  This is a journalism contest, so nothing is to be made up, faked, or planned ahead of time.  To make this fair for everyone, teams CANNOT do a story about anyone they know or have met before. The intention of this rule is to keep local schools from having an unfair advantage. The topic will allow you to shoot on-site at the hotel, but it us up to you and your teacher if you wish to go off-site to shoot.  The final story should run no more than 2 minutes.  Pay attention to overall production values, a strong script, and finding a compelling character or two as you meet the given assignment.