Category 1: Early childhood education and first years of compulsory primary education
The category comprises materials for kindergarten and pre-school or similar institutions like Infant Classes or Børnehaver, Niplaggeio, Dječji vrtić, Detska gradina or Koolieelne lasteasutus. It also covers the first year or first two years of compulsory education (Primary, Grundschule, école élémentaire, İlkokul).
- Children who attend these institutions are typically between 0 - 8 years old.
CATEGORY 2: Second half of primary education and lower secondary education
The category comprises the second half of primary education (children are typically 8 - 10) and the first years in single structure education and in some cases lower secondary education (children up to 11 or 12).
CATEGORY 3: Secondary education (including secondary vocational education)
- In Germany this would be 3rd and 4th year of Grundschule and the first two years of Gymnasium.
- In Turkey, similarly 3rd and 4th year of Ilkokul and the first two years of Ortaokul.
- In Spain, this would be the last four years of Educación Primaria.
- In France this would be four years of École élémentaire and the first year of Collège.
- In some countries, where compulsory education starts earlier like in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, this category starts in the 3rd year of Osnovna skola or similar institutions.
- In England and Wales, the category would be adequate for materials for key stage 2.
- In Hungary this category would be for the last three years of Általános Iskola.
The category comprises secondary and single structure education for 12/13 - 16/17 year olds.
CATEGORY 4: Post-secondary education (including tertiary education)
- It typically covers the last years of compulsory secondary education and includes vocational training if this falls into the age category, like the Centre de formation d'apprentis in France or the Istitutio tecnico in Italy.
- In countries where full-time compulsory education ends at the age of 14 (Croatia) or 15 (e.g. Czech Republic, Greece, Cyprus, Austria, Poland, Slovenia, etc) materials for 16-17 year olds (at e.g. Gimnázium, Menntaskóli, Liceum, Oberstufenrealgymnasium) should still be entered in this category.
The category comprises post-secondary and tertiary education for students from the ages of 17/18.
- This may include all kinds of materials for state and private institutions and for self study.
- The materials could be for the last years of Liceo as well as for Konservatórium or MBO Basisberopepsopleiding.
- If materials cover less or more than an academic year, this should be clearly stated.
- If materials fall between category 3 and 4, it is advisable to contact the chairman for advice on the appropriate category.
Every year, the jury awards a special prize (formerly known as MeritAward) to one product from any of the four categories.
- This product should demonstrate an innovative and creative teaching and learning approach.
- In 2017, the jury will pay special attention to all materials that deal with the issues of second language acquisition or literacy or diversity and inclusion.