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CIED 4313: Young Adult Literature: Home

Resources for students enrolled in young adult literature classes or in secondary education language arts classes.

CIED 4313 - Young Adult Literature

Survey of print and non-print materials, including multicultural and multi-ethnic materials for young adults from middle school through high school. History, criticism, selection, and evaluation of young adult literature and exploration of its relation to the needs and interests of young people. Offered each fall semester.


Finding Books in the ETL: You can find YA books by using our catalog. Just make sure you find the call number for the book you are looking for. Fiction will be listed under JF and the first three letters of the author's last name. For example, a book by Kwame Alexander would be JF ALE. Non-fiction is listed by its Dewey Decimal Number. These are assigned by subject. For example, a biography would be in the 920's.

Other YA Literature Texts

What Is YA Literature?

"Anything that readers between the approximate ages of twelve and eighteen choose to read either for leisure reading or to fill school assignments."  -- Nilson, Literature for Today's Young Adults (2013), p. 3. 

Who is a young adult?

Among educators, the age range varies for young adult.

  • The ERIC database defines young adults as the ages 18-22.
  • The Educational Testing Service defines young adults as those aged 21-25.
  • This guide uses Nilson's range of ages 12-18, or grades 7-12. This corresponds to middle school and high school.

Other terms for YA literature are adolescent literature and juvenile literature. NCTE members have ALAN, the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents. School and public libraries often use the term juvenile fiction or section, though it's a bit dated. Juvenile often includes elementary children's books.

Where is YA Fiction & Nonfiction?

In this Library, we use the call number jF for modern fiction for grades 3-12, so it includes YA fiction. Fiction is arranged by author. This includes:

  • contemporary realistic fiction
  • historical fiction
  • science fiction & fantasy
  • adventure, mysteries, & sports fiction

  Literary classics tend to be in the main library, which uses the Dewey system even for fiction:

  • 813 for American fiction, i.e. Twain's Huckleberry Finn
  • 823 for British literature, i.e. Dicken's Great Expectations
  • 843 for French literature, i.e. Hugo's Les Miserables

At many public libraries, including Stillwater Public Library, young adult fiction is labeled YA and arranged by author. It is separate from the juvenile fiction section. SPL has no separate nonfiction for YA, so informational books are either in the juvenile or the adult nonfiction.

Finding Book Reviews

ALAN Review - peer-reviewed journal about adolescent (young adult or YA) literature and teaching it. Themed issues, with critiques and surveys, research, author interviews, and "Clip & File" book reviews (on heavy paper). Published by NCTE's Assembly on Literature for Adolescents.

Booklist  (BL) - library trade journal primarily for book reviews, both adults and youth. Includes themed booklists ("Spotlight on..."), author interviews, and hot lists. BL reviews are often included on

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB)  current issues only online.

Children's Literature Review  Significant overviews of and literary criticism about children's and adolesent (young adult, YA) literature, both recent and older titles. Available both in print (older volumes) and online.

Horn Book Magazine and Horn Book Guide (semi-annual, reviews only) - trade journals with outstanding articles and longer reviews, most of which are recommendations. Includes notes about recent awards in children's literature. July/August issue features articles about the recent winners of top awards, especially the Caldecott, Newbery, and Corretta Scott King. NOTE:  Horn Book reviews are NOT included in the CLCD database.

Library Media Connection (LMC) - book reviews and monthly themed articles, e.g. Author Studies. Ratings are:  Highly recommended (starred), recommended, additional selection, not recommended. Additional reviews online.

School Library Journal (SLJ) "For Children's, Young Adult, and School Librarians" - A leading journal for teacher-librarians, media specialists. Articles on timely topics plus book and media reviews (arranged by grade level and type). Starred reviews are especially recommended. Bonus online features. SLJ reviews are frequently included on

School Library Monthly (SLM) - trade journal (Libraries Unlimited). Some articles include themed booklists, such as geometry, quilting, literature. In print and online editions.

VOYA (Voice of Youth Advocates) online only. - Journal about preteen and adolescent (young adult, YA) literature. Has a unique rating system, for both Quality and Popularity of books and media. Lots of themed booklists, author interviews, gaming in libraries, and other popular teen activities.


Many sections of this guide are based on a work compiled by Shonda Brisco, MLIS.