The Real Deal: Teen Characters with Autism in YA Novels

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Marilyn Irwin, Ph.D., Emeritus Associate Professor, School of Informatics and Computing, Indiana University, Indianapolis

Annette Y. Goldsmith, Ph.D., Lecturer, Information School, University of Washington

Rachel Applegate, Ph.D., Chair & Associate Professor, Department of Library and Information Science, Indiana University, Indianapolis

Marilyn Irwin, Annette Y. Goldsmith, and Rachel Applegate. The Real Deal: Teen Characters with Autism in YA Novels. Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 6 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>. 

Abstract

Between 2012 and 2014, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control revised their estimate of the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) from one in eighty-eight children1 in the United States to one in sixty-eight children.2 With this large number of youth with ASD in our communities, it is critical that accurate information be presented in YA literature, fiction as well as nonfiction, to increase understanding of the disorder. What is real in the depiction of autism in YA novels? Based on analysis of fifty-eight YA novels that include a young adult character with ASD, a portrait has been drawn of how they are treated, who their friends are, and where they go to school. The data from the novels were contrasted with current research involving actual youth with ASD to assess the accuracy of the fictional portrayals. Findings indicate that the depiction of educational placement and the behavior of others toward the characters in the books was a reasonable reflection of real life as shown in the research; however, fewer friendships were found in the novels than studies of actual adolescents with ASD indicate.

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Posted in Selected Papers from the 2014 YALSA Young Adult Literature Symposium, Volume 6: April 2015 | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

You Are What You Read: Young Adult Literacy and Identity in Rural America

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Robin A. Moeller, Assistant Professor, College of Education, Leadership and Educational Studies, Appalachian State University

Kim E. Becnel, Assistant Professor, College of Education, Leadership and Educational Studies, Appalachian State University

Moeller, Robin A. and Becnel, Kim E. . You Are What You Read: Young Adult Literacy and Identity in Rural America Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 6 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

The purpose of this empirical research study is to understand the reading habits and preferences of rural U.S. high school students as well as if and how they see their current and future lives depicted in media marketed to young adults. Using an inductive approach, we surveyed tenth-grade students in rural counties in one southeastern American state about their reading interests and habits and their self-perceptions and aspirations. This study provides insights into a large but invisible subculture of youth in the United States. The practical implications of this research include an increased understanding of rural teens’ relationship with identity and media that can be used by the school and library communities as they try to improve the offerings—in terms of collections, programming, and services—that they provide for teen audiences.

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Posted in Selected Papers from the 2014 YALSA Young Adult Literature Symposium, Volume 6: April 2015 | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Connected Learning, Librarians, and Connecting Youth Interest

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Crystle Martin, Postdoctoral Researcher, Digital Media and Learning Hub, University of California, Irvine

Martin, Crystle. Connected Learning, Librarians, and Connecting Youth Interest. Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 6 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

The purpose of this ethnographic study is to understand connected learning of youth in online communities and how these findings can influence the practice of librarians to support youth learning. Drawing from a two-and-a-half-year ethnography, I present data that was coded using the connected learning framework. This study provides insights into the role that librarians can play in the larger learning ecologies of youth. Finally, this paper gives practical implications for librarians based on the actions of youth, using a holistic approach to youth learning. It identifies librarians as ideal mentors to help youth connect their learning from interest spaces to academic and career spaces, allowing them to receive value and recognition for their skills and abilities. Continue reading

Posted in The Future of Library Services for and with Teens, Volume 6: March 2015 | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Impact of Assigned Reading on Reading Pleasure in Young Adults

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Stacy Creel, Assistant Professor, School of Library & Information Science, University of Southern Mississippi

Creel, Stacy. “The Impact of Assigned Reading on Reading Pleasure in Young Adults.” Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 5 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

This research presents the results of a survey of 833 U.S. adolescents, ages twelve to eighteen years old. It was hypothesized that teachers are assigning reading (rather than students self-selecting books) and that this leads to dissatisfaction with reading. Additional factors (gender, age, and self-identification as a reader) were also examined for their influence on reading satisfaction. The results indicate that approximately one-third of the respondents were allowed to select books for school reading assignments and that self-selection had a statistical impact on their self-perceived reading pleasure. Limitations include geographic location, a non-random sample, and data collection by various surveyors. This study adds to the growing body of research showing that student self-selection of reading materials leads to greater pleasure and interest in reading.

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Posted in The Future of Library Services for and with Teens, Volume 6: March 2015 | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Radical Change Theory: Framework for Empowering Digital Youth

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Kyungwon Koh, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Oklahoma

Koh, Kyungwon. “Radical Change Theory: Framework for Empowering Digital Youth.” Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 5 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

Eliza T. Dresang influenced numerous researchers and professionals by equipping them to understand and better serve digital youth. This paper revisits her theory of Radical Change, which explains the synergistic combination of changing resources and youth in the digital age. The presented research applies and extends the theory by investigating the information behavior of digital youth. The study has two phases —Phase 1: content analysis of research literature; Phase 2: group and individual interviews with young adults who are members of an online community called Scratch. Selected findings illustrate the ways in which digital youth have an increased sense of control over learning, creative, and social aspects of their life. The study demonstrates that Radical Change theory provides a unique perspective to ferret out the potential of non-traditional information behaviors. The theory continues to be a tool for enhancing a sense of agency for digital youth by increasing their capacity to learn, create, and socialize. Future research applying the theory could explore how the dynamic interactions between changing resources and youth may have an impact on youth obtaining twenty-first-century skills.

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Posted in Eliza T. Dresang Memorial Issue, Volume 5: January 2015 | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Putting Youth First: The Radical Eliza T. Dresang

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J. Elizabeth Mills, Annette Y. Goldsmith, Kathleen Campana, Beth J. Patin, Sarah A. Evans

Mills, J. Elizabeth, et al. “Putting Youth First: The Radical Eliza T. Dresang.” Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 5 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

This tribute presents a multi-faceted, multi-voiced perspective on the career and work of the late Dr. Eliza T. Dresang through the words of her colleagues. Dresang’s groundbreaking work, Radical Change: Books for Youth in a Digital Age (1999), grew out of conversations with colleagues that were facilitated by her service on book award and other committees. In her research, she pursued the larger connections between children’s publishing and the burgeoning digital world, and she had an immeasurable impact on the world of children’s and teen library services. She also influenced future youth services librarians by championing groundbreaking changes to the library school curriculum at the University of Washington. Throughout her career, Dresang advocated for services and literature that keep the needs of youth at their core. Her focus on the inclusion of all young people is evident from her work with special needs children as well as her courses on multicultural resources for youth and developing cultural competency among LIS professionals. This article includes interactive links to articles and audio interviews with colleagues that speak to the impact of Dresang’s research.

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Posted in Eliza T. Dresang Memorial Issue, Volume 5: January 2015 | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Looking at Kim Dong Hwa’s Color Trilogy through the Prism of Radical Change

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Jonathan M. Hollister and Don Latham

Hollister, Jonathan M., and Don Latham. “Looking at Kim Dong Hwa’s Color Trilogy through the Prism of Radical Change.” Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 5 (2015): n. page. Web. <Date accessed>.

Abstract

This essay examines Kim Dong Hwa’s manhwa (Korean graphic novel) series the Color Trilogy using the critical framework of Eliza Dresang’s Radical Change theory. This theory has had a significant impact on children’s and young adult literature scholarship in the years since the publication of her 1999 book, Radical Change: Books for Youth in a Digital Age. In the book, Dresang devoted very little space to discussing graphic novels. However, in a subsequent essay published in 2008, Dresang states that had she been writing the book then, she would have devoted at least one full chapter to a discussion of the graphic novel format. We attempt to extend Dresang’s work by examining Kim’s trilogy through the prism of Radical Change theory. We argue that all three types of Radical Change—Changing Forms and Formats, Changing Perspectives, and Changing Boundaries—are evident in Kim’s sensitive, poetic story of a young girl’s sexual awakening in early twentieth-century rural Korea.

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Posted in Eliza T. Dresang Memorial Issue, Volume 5: January 2015 | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Eliza Dresang and the Boy Who Lived

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Colette Drouillard, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Library and Information Studies, Valdosta State University

Drouillard, Colette. “Eliza Dresang and The Boy Who Lived.” Journal of Research on Libraries & Young Adults 5 (2015): n. page. Web.  <Date accessed>. Adobe_PDF_icon

Eliza Dresang’s expertise in children’s and young adult literature is evident through the wide range of books, articles, committees, and projects she wrote or contributed to over the course of her career. Her interest in Harry Potter was a very small and seemingly minor component of her entire body of work; however, this series of books and the impact they had on young readers captivated her attention in a variety of ways over the course of the publication of the books and continued until the time of her death.

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Posted in Eliza T. Dresang Memorial Issue, Volume 5: January 2015 | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Issues in Teen Technology Use to Find Health Information

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Lesley Farmer, Ed.D., Professor, California State University Long Beach

Abstract

Teens need and want information about health issues. Even though teens tend to prefer asking people for help, increasingly they access digital resources because of the Internet’s availability, affordability, and anonymity. This paper presents a critical literature review of studies of teens’ online health information-seeking and discusses several issues related to teen technology use for seeking health information. The results indicate that teen health information interests vary by age, gender, social situation, and motivation. Several issues about how teens access and seek that information are discussed. The paper concludes with recommendations to insure optimal library services to address the health information needs of all teens.

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Posted in Volume 4: August 2014 | Leave a comment

From Dickens to 9/11: Exploring Graphic Nonfiction to Support the Secondary-School Curriculum

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By Barbara J. Guzzetti, Professor, Arizona State University and Marcia A. Mardis, Associate Professor, Florida State University

Abstract

Graphic nonfiction has been under-researched for content-area instruction, yet these hybrid texts may motivate reluctant readers as they blend elements of art, journalism, and scholarship. This study aimed to determine the appeal and utility of graphic nonfiction for teaching content concepts. It was collaboratively conducted by a literacy researcher and a library and information science researcher. The multimedia perspective of the New Literacies Studies informed the work. Graphic nonfiction titles Charles Dickens: Scenes from an Extraordinary Life and The 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation were compared to terms/concepts in a literature textbook, a nonfiction trade book, and The 9/11 Report. This study illustrates the utility of graphic nonfiction for teaching content concepts. Students can learn key concepts and be motivated by these alternative texts. This study also demonstrated the need to include original source documents, textbooks, and graphic nonfiction to provide varying presentations of and perspectives on content concepts.
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Posted in Volume 4: May 2014 | Leave a comment