We recognize that submitting your yearbook for a full Spartan Critique can be intimidating if you’ve never done it before. (It’s not natural to seek out criticism of something we pour so much work into!)

So, MIPA is launching the Mentor Critique program to help member advisers and programs grow and build in confidence. This service provides advisers and media outlets that have not recently participated in MIPA’s Spartan Critique service with a one-on-one connection to a mentor who is an established MIPA adviser with a record of success in their own program.

MIPA’s hope is that this process will help you build your program toward submitting your book in MIPA’s annual Spartan Critique contest.

For 2018, this program is available only to yearbook advisers. We hope to expand it in the future.

What you get

The critique

Mentors will provide a detailed written critique, using MIPA’s Spartan Yearbook Standards, of your book’s Unifying Concept and one of these four other areas that you designate:

  • Coverage
  • Writing
  • Design
  • Photography

Relationship with a mentor

You will be encouraged to have a dialogue with your mentor about your yearbook program throughout the next year, and you will have the option to meet in person, via phone or via web conference at least once with your mentor to talk about your yearbook program.


MIPA charges a fee of $45 for a Mentor Critique. We use this fee to provide a small stipend for the mentor’s time and to cover shipping costs. This fee may be paid by check, credit card or purchase order. Make an online payment here

Entry process

Your yearbook must be a MIPA member to participate. Complete the Mentor Critique entry form, which provides background information about the adviser and yearbook program. Download the entry form:

Ship the form, payment and a copy of your 2018 yearbook to:

MIPA – Mentor Critique
404 Wilson Road, Room 305
East Lansing, MI 48824


Mentor Critique entries for 2018 yearbooks must be postmarked by Nov. 15.

Frequently asked questions

When will we get our critique back?

The MIPA office tries to get completed critiques back to advisers 4-6 weeks after the deadline. Holidays, etc., can affect that timeline.

How is this different from the full Spartan Critique?

The Mentor Critique provides feedback in only two of the six areas of MIPA’s Yearbook Standards. A Spartan Critique applies the entire standards to a yearbook, providing an overall rating and an award. There is no award with Mentor Critiques, but there is the opportunity to consult with the mentor throughout the next year.

Can I get a Mentor Critique AND participate in the Spartan Critique?

The Mentor Critique is designed to help advisers and programs build confidence so they can submit for a Spartan Critique in a future year. If your program already submits for the full critique, then you’ve already achieved that goal! MIPA can still connect you with a mentor adviser through our established mentorship program, but that relationship does not include the expectation of a formal critique.

How is this different from MIPA’s mentor program?

Mentor Critiques are designed to supplement our established mentor program, which links new advisers with more experienced advisers. MIPA mentorships can be whatever a mentor and mentee want them to be. Mentor Critiques is a more formal program.