Critique time – Submit your Yearbook 2017 IHSPA-Jostens Wholebook Evaluation & Contest


The 2017 Wholebook Contest and Evaluation is now open for entry.

The IHSPA/Jostens Wholebook Contest and Evaluation requires you to ship your book to us. The deadline to arrive is September 29, 2017.

Here are some considerations as you prepare for this contest/critique.


  • Apply consistent and transparent expectations from judge to judge and entry to entry.
  • Include concrete, specific and thorough feedback based on recognized best practices.
  • Acknowledge and encourage the idea that the best student media programs are labs for experimentation. Students may be doing something that doesn’t adhere to the traditional expectations outlined in the evaluation tool. Judges should be flexible enough to allow for individual choices made by student media outlets in meeting the needs of their specific audience.
  • Contain specific recommendations for improvement to student media outlets in ways that improve low-performing outlets but also challenge high-performing outlets by providing next steps for growth of the media outlet.
  • Include both positive comments and constructive criticism.
  • Recognize that the realities of a student classroom experience differ from that of the professional media in terms of time, budget and resources available.
  • Address student freedom of expression and journalism law and ethics, including copyright, plagiarism and censorship issues that are apparent to the judge.
  • Address the most basic storytelling skills (reporting and writing, photojournalism, presentation, etc.).
  • Address industry-standard technical skills (software usage, media platforms, etc.).
  • Address targeted areas identified by an adviser or student leaders in their introductory statement.
  • Provide opportunities to demonstrate growth over time (year-to-year or within years).
  • Have specific deadlines for submission and be returned in a timely manner to provide useful feedback.
  • Be completed by a qualified judge.



  • Adviser or student leaders should provide a statement summarizing targeted areas of growth, as well as specific questions about the current year’s work.
  • Provide information about the school, student staff and media outlet, as requested by the sponsoring organization, to give judges insight into factors affecting content and coverage.
  • Seek critiques from different organizations to form multiple perspectives.


  • Review and understand the feedback before sharing it widely with students. Determine which areas of a critique should be emphasized.
  • Celebrate success.
  • See criticism as an opportunity for growth and future success.
  • Synthesize feedback from a variety of critiques from multiple organizations to establish strategies for improvement and growth; apply lessons learned to a wide spectrum of future work.
  • Use evaluations as teaching tools; encourage students to use evaluation instruments for peer editing.
  • Understand that critiques are not designed to be a qualitative measure of teacher performance but may be conversation starters with school administrators.
  • Share feedback about the evaluation results and processes with contest administrators, but understand that evaluators/judges are colleagues or professionals giving their time and expertise with the best of intentions.

Please submit your yearbook with this form two page entry WholeBook 2017 Entry form. It is an fillable PDF complete and print to send with your and  $40 entry fee to:

100 Adler Building Room E323,
University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242-2004
Postmarked by October 1, 2014
IHSPA membership is required to enter the contest. 

If you have not renewed your membership for 2017-18 school year please complete this membership form.