Student Design Award 2019 logo

Your chance to win a work placement within the Penguin Random House Design Studios as well as £1,000 in prize money.

The Penguin Random House Student Design Award is an opportunity for students interested in pursuing a career in design to experience real cover design briefs first-hand.

The competition is open to anyone studying on a Further Education or Higher Education course (part time or full time) in any subject and at any level at the time of the deadline for entries (5 March 2019 at 2:00pm). Entrants must be aged 18 or over by 1 July 2019.  The competition is not open to graphic design professionals. Entrants must be available to take up the 4-week work placement if they win the first prize. See the Terms and Conditions for full details of entry requirements.

To enter, select the category/s you would like to submit an entry for, read the briefs and get designing!

Students may enter a maximum of one design in each of the three categories.

All entries must be submitted digitally via our submissions page.  

To make the process even more similar to the way our designers work, once the judges have selected the shortlist, the Art Directors will email the shortlisted entrants with individual feedback and further art direction on their cover designs.

To proceed to the next stage of the competition, shortlisted students will be required to resubmit their work, taking the Art Directors’ comments into consideration, before the final round of judging. See our submission details for the support material you will be required to submit.

Important dates

Application form open – Monday 3 December 2018

Closing date for entries – Tuesday 5 March 2019, 2.00pm (GMT)

Shortlist announcement – Wednesday 1 May 2019

Closing date for shortlisted student’s final submissions – Wednesday 15 May 2019, 5.00pm (GMT)

Winners announced – Wednesday 19 June 2019

A letter from Tom Weldon, Penguin Random House CEO

Standout cover design is an integral part of the success of a book and Penguin Random House has created thousands of iconic book covers throughout the years. The vital role of illustrators and designers in the production of some of the world's best-loved adult and children's books has created and defined the identity of our UK publishing lists.

We value creativity and design incredibly highly, and started the Penguin Random House Student Design Award twelve years ago to encourage the next generation of designers to use their amazing talents to help us tell our authors' stories.

I am always impressed with the quality of submissions and I look forward to seeing what this year’s talent has to offer.  

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"I think as an illustrator, I often feel stuck in this middle ground between creating work that is very representational or figurative, versus work that is more graphic and design-led, and I felt like this project has really helped me work out how to navigate and combine both of those approaches."

- Harry Woodgate, winner of the Penguin Adult Non-Fiction Cover Award 2018