Higher Goals Categories

Categories that require hard copy entries to be mailed to Nashville:

  • 507 Photography Use – Print (two consecutive issues)
  • 514 Publication Design (two consecutive issues)
  • 515 Publication Redesign (1 issue after redesign and 1 issue prior to redesign)
  • 702 Single-Theme Section or Issue
  • 511 Cover (optional—you have the option to mail in submission if the physical nature of cover warrants review, i.e., die cut, embossing, etc.)

New Categories for 2023

  • 606 Social media video — up to 2 minutes max
  • 607 Short-form video – 2-10 minutes max
  • 608 Long-form video - 10-60 minutes max

The categories in Higher Goals are:

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Editorial

401  Article Series: Multiple original articles on a topic from two or more consecutive issues (not a regular column or feature). Maximum 5,000 words combined.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness of research and sources

402  Biblical Exposition: Any original article with the biblical or theological treatment of a doctrine or Scripture passage.

Judging Criteria: Clarity | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness of research

403  Critical Review: An original review of book(s), video and movies, drama, music and concerts or other media.

Judging Criteria: Critical perceptivity | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Informs about subject | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Reviewer's subjective response

404  Department: Regular section with a recurring title, with one or more writers. Submit from two consecutive issues. Maximum 5,000 words combined.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Strength of writing

405  Devotional: An original inspirational biblical or spiritual piece to aid spiritual growth, with application. May be part of a series.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Emotive impact | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

406  Editorial: Any opinion piece written by an editorial staff member.

Judging Criteria: Cogency of arguments | Critical perceptivity | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

407  Evangelism: An original article to Christians meant to help believers learn to share the gospel more effectively.

Judging Criteria: Faithfulness to the Gospel | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Motivational effectiveness | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

408  Fiction: An original short story (including a parable).

Judging Criteria: Believable characters | Believable conflict | Credible resolution | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

409  First-Person Article: Autobiographical account.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness

410  Freelance Article: Articles in this category must be entered by a freelance writer who is an EPA Associate member. The article must have appeared in an EPA member publication or, if published in a non-EPA publication, it must have a faith-relevant theme. (Publication members are not eligible to enter this category.)

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness

411  General Article – Short: Any original nonfiction article with a word count of 900 or less.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness

412  General Article – Intermediate: Any original nonfiction article with a word count between 901 and 1,600.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness

413  General Article – Long: Any original nonfiction article with a word count between 1,601 and 3,500.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness

414  Humorous: An original fiction or nonfiction article or editorial using humor to communicate.

Judging Criteria: Effectiveness of humor | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Imagination | Perception shown | Quality of writing (including style/voice

415  Interview Article: An original article based on in-depth interviewing (can be a Q-and-A or use direct and indirect quotations).

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Subject's unique significance/human interest

416  Personality Article: An original biographical account, either historical or contemporary.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Subject's unique significance/human interest

417  Poetry: A single original poem.

Judging Criteria: Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Language use | Perceptiveness | Rhythm/metre | Tone and theme

418  Reporting: Any news story originating with the publication.

Judging Criteria: Fairness/objectivity | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness of research and sources

419  Standing Column: A regular column under a recurring head by one or more authors. (Submit columns from two consecutive issues.)

Judging Criteria: Critical perceptivity | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Well-expressed opinions

420  Student Writer of the Year: An original article by an undergrad student writer and published in an EPA member publication. (Entered by publication.)

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness


Design & Photography

501  Cartoon: A single original cartoon (or panel, or cartoon in comic book format) not illustrating an article.

Judging Criteria: Originality | Draftsmanship | Design | Concept | Impact

502  Original Art – Digital/Mixed Media: Original illustration based on or incorporating photographic elements. May include special use of type.

Judging Criteria: Composition | Technique | Appropriateness to context | Clarity of communication | Impact for reader

503  Original Art – Traditional: Original non-photographic illustration. (May be a cartoon illustrating an article. May include use of type.)

Judging Criteria: Composition | Technique | Appropriateness to context | Clarity of communication | Impact for reader

504  Single Photo – Candid: Original photo of subject acting naturally or spontaneously in uncontrolled lighting and conditions.

Judging Criteria: Impact | Composition | Creativity | Technique | Appropriateness for context

505  Single Photo – Controlled: Original photo (not stock) of subject posed in situation with controlled lighting and other conditions.

Judging Criteria: Impact | Composition | Creativity | Technique | Appropriateness for context

506  Photo Feature: Text and photography for a single article originating with the publication.

Judging Criteria: Impact | Design/layout | Creativity | Technique | Text-photo coordination

507  Photography Use - Print (2 consecutive issues): The use of photography for the publication as a whole. Submit two consecutive issues by mail. (Restricted to Print members.)

Judging Criteria: Overall impact | Overall technical quality | Artistic success of images | Cohesiveness of photos within layout | Fit with publication purpose

508  Photography Use - Digital: The use of photography for the website or digital publication as a whole. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria: Overall impact | Overall technical quality | Artistic success of images | Cohesiveness of photos within digital presentation | Fit with publication purpose

509  Table of Contents: Overall concept and design that includes blend of typography, text, photo, and/or illustration.

Judging Criteria: Organization and layout | Creativity and style | Skill of execution | Aesthetic appeal | Typography

510  Typography and Lettering: Use of typography and/or lettering to enhance communication and appearance. Can be a single page, a spread or an entire article.

Judging Criteria: Creativity | Skill and execution | Appropriateness to context | Impact and communicative power | Use of color (including black)

511  Cover: A single cover, which must use the publication name. (Open also to digital members who produce a digital publication with a cover.) (You have the option to mail in submission if physical nature of cover warrants review.)

Judging Criteria: Skill of execution | Creativity | Aesthetic appeal | Typography (including logo) | Communicative power

512  Infographic: The visualization of a concept or narrative that relies on a compilation of statistics, imagery, visual data and minimal text, designed to communicate a topic quickly and clearly.

Judging Criteria: Creative approach | Informative and practical | Clarity of information | Accurate data representation | Visual design

513  Two-Page Spread Design: Graphic presentation that includes blend of typography, text, photo, and/or illustration.

Judging Criteria: Use of space | Creativity/aesthetic appeal | Use of art and photography | Design and typography | Appropriateness for context

514  Publication Design (2 consecutive issues): The graphic presentation of editorial content of the publication. Submit two consecutive issues by mail. (Restricted to Print members.)

Judging Criteria: Graphic vitality | Graphic execution | Continuity and pacing | Distinctiveness | Appropriateness for content

515  Publication Redesign: For significant design change. Submit hard copy of one issue with the new design, plus the corresponding issue from the previous year by mail. (Restricted to Print members.)

Judging Criteria: Improved graphic vitality | Improved execution | Improved continuity/pacing | Improved distinctiveness | Improved fit with content


Digital

601  Blog: Single Post: A single blog post from a website serving exclusively as a blog. Can be from a clearly identified blog hosted on a publication's or organization's website. (Restricted to Digital and Associate members.)

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Use of imagery/emotion

602  Blog: Website: A complete blog website authored by one person or a group of individuals. Can be hosted on a publication's or organization's website, but must be clearly identified as a blog. (Restricted to Digital and Associate members.)

Judging Criteria: Design/Use of imagery/Aesthetic appeal | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization/navigation/mobile responsiveness | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

603  e-Newsletter (2 issues): A digital newsletter informing people united by interest in a subject or organization. (Restricted to Digital and Associate members.)

Judging Criteria: Design/Use of imagery/Aesthetic appeal | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Idea (timeliness, appeal, takeaway value) | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice)

604  Website design: Overall aesthetic appeal and usability of a website. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria: Aesthetic appeal | Use of graphic elements | Organization/navigation | Usability/mobile responsiveness | Page load times

605  Podcast: A single audio program (episode) presented as a broadcast version of editorial content. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria: Originality of treatment | Effective development of topic | Cultural relevance | Clarity of thought | Production quality

606  NEW Social Media Video - 2 minutes max: A single video that tells a story in 2 minutes or less. May contain a CTA, but cannot be marketing or self-promotional throughout. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria: Script (messaging) | Production (lighting, sound, music, graphics, video quality) | Performance (acting, speaking, presentation) | Creativity/Uniqueness | Impact/cultural relevance

607  NEW Short-form Video – 2 to 10 minutes max: A single video that tells a story or shows an interview in 2 to 10 minutes. May contain a CTA, but cannot be marketing or self-promotional throughout. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria: Script (messaging) | Production (lighting, sound, music, graphics, video quality) | Performance (acting, speaking, presentation) | Creativity/Uniqueness | Impact/cultural relevance

608  NEW Long-form Video - 10 to 60 minutes max: A single video that tells a story or shows an interview in 10 to 60 minutes. May contain a CTA, but cannot be marketing or self-promotional throughout. (Restricted to Digital members.)

Judging Criteria:  Script (messaging) | Production (lighting, sound, music, graphics, video quality) | Performance (acting, speaking, presentation) | Creativity/Uniqueness | Impact/cultural relevance


Other

701  Feature Article: The entire multi-page presentation of a single feature article, including editorial content, related sidebars, title, use of imagery, overall design.

Judging Criteria: Design/use of imagery (photos, graphics, illustrations) | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Thoroughness of coverage

702  Single-Theme Section or Issue: In-depth treatment of a single topic with multiple articles, including editorial content, related sidebars, title, use of imagery, overall design. This can be a multi-page section within an issue or the entire issue. Submit entire issue by mail. (Restricted to Print members.)

Judging Criteria: Design/use of imagery (photos, graphics, illustrations) | Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Titles

703  Titles: Enter three feature story titles that powerfully draw readers into each story. Submit entire layout for each article.

Judging Criteria: Creativity | Relevance to the story | Audience appeal | Typography & Design

704  Cause of the Year Article — Unity: Any original article with a central theme of Unity.

Judging Criteria: Grammar/punctuation/sentence structure | Organization and flow | Quality of writing (including style/voice) | Relevancy to topic | Thoroughness of research and sources

705  Cause of the Year Illustration/Photo — Unity: Any original illustrative artwork or photo with a central theme of Unity

Judging Criteria: Composition | Technique | Appropriateness to context | Clarity of communication | Impact for reader

 

Updated November 2022