Young Adult Library Services Association

Last updated

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), established in 1957, is a division of the American Library Association. YALSA is a national association of librarians, library workers and advocates whose mission is to expand the capacity of libraries to better serve teens. YALSA administers several awards and sponsors an annual Young Adult Literature Symposium, Teen Read Week, the third week of each October, and Teen Tech Week, the second week of each March. YALSA currently has over 5,200 members. YALSA aims to expand and strengthen library services for teens through advocacy, research, professional development and events. [1]



The organization that is now referred to as the Young Adult Library Services Association began on June 24, 1957 and was called the Young Adult Services Division following a reorganization of the American Library Association. This reorganization resulted in the Association of Young People's Librarians being split into the Children's Library Association and the Young Adult Services Division. A major responsibility of YASD was the evaluation and selection of materials for young adults, with the most active YASD committee being the book selection committee. YASD also advocated for library services for youth by sending delegates to both the 1960 and 1971 White House Conferences on Youth. By the 1970s YASD was growing stronger with its own office and staff and in 1979 it was given division representation on the ALA council. YASD's involvement in book selection also continued with genre specific book committees being formed in 1988. The name change to the Young Adult Services Association occurred in 1992, and brought greater notoriety to the organization, as well as a new image, logo and a new mission and vision statement. The re-branding of YASD as YALSA in the 1990s also brought with it an electronic and online presence, as well as new programs such as Teen Read Week. Additionally, YALSA began awarding the Printz and Alex Awards. YALSA has also been awarded the World Book Goal award twice by the ALA for its work serving young adults in public libraries. Starting in 1994 presidents of YALSA also began identifying themes that would reflect their terms of service, such as, "Youth Participation Revisited" and "Developing a National Leadership Agenda for Library Service to Young Adults. The official journal of YALSA is called Young Adult Library Services and it provides articles of current interest, book reviews, professional literature and serves as the official record of the organization. [2] [3] [4] [5]


See also

Related Research Articles

Newbery Medal Annual award for writing a childrens book published in the United States

The John Newbery Medal, frequently shortened to the Newbery, is a literary award given by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), to the author of "the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children". The Newbery and the Caldecott Medal are considered the two most prestigious awards for children's literature in the United States. Books selected are widely carried by bookstores and libraries, the authors are interviewed on television, and master's and doctoral theses are written on them. Named for John Newbery, an 18th-century English publisher of juvenile books, the winner of the Newbery is selected at the ALA's Midwinter Conference by a fifteen-person committee. The Newbery was proposed by Frederic G. Melcher in 1921, making it the first children's book award in the world. The physical bronze medal was designed by Rene Paul Chambellan and is given to the winning author at the next ALA annual conference. Since its founding there have been several changes to the composition of the selection committee, while the physical medal remains the same.

Susan Eloise Hinton is an American writer best known for her young-adult novels (YA) set in Oklahoma, especially The Outsiders (1967), which she wrote during high school. Hinton is credited with introducing the YA genre.

The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization based in the United States that promotes libraries and library education internationally. It is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 57,000 members.

Gary Paulsen American writer

Gary James Paulsen is an American writer of young adult literature, best known for coming of age stories about the wilderness. He is the author of more than 200 books and has written more than 200 magazine articles and short stories, and several plays, all primarily for teenagers. He won the Margaret Edwards Award from the American Library Association in 1997 for his lifetime contribution in writing for teens.

Young Adult Library Services is a quarterly magazine published by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). It supersedes the Journal of Youth Services, which was published together with the Association for Library Service to Children until 2002. The magazine serves as a mode of continuing education for librarians working with young adult populations. The content of the magazine includes current news in the field, showcasing the best practices, providing news from related fields, spotlighting significant events of YALSA, and providing in depth reviews of professional literature. The fall issue contains award announcements, speeches by award-winning authors, and background information on books. The journal publishes articles about teen habits, literacy, and interests. Additionally, it serves as mode of communication for members of the association and as a record for the organization.

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) is a division of the American Library Association, and it is the world's largest organization dedicated to library service to children. Its members are concerned with creating a better future for children through libraries.

The Michael L. Printz Award is an American Library Association literary award that annually recognizes the "best book written for teens, based entirely on its literary merit". It is sponsored by Booklist magazine; administered by the ALA's young-adult division, the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA); and named for the Topeka, Kansas, school librarian Mike Printz, a long-time active member of YALSA.

<i>Booklist</i> American book review magazine

Booklist is a publication of the American Library Association that provides critical reviews of books and audiovisual materials for all ages. Booklist's primary audience consists of libraries, educators, and booksellers. The magazine is available to subscribers in print and online. Booklist is published 22 times per year, and reviews over 7,500 titles annually. The Booklist brand also offers a blog, various newsletters, and monthly webinars. The Booklist offices are located in the American Library Association headquarters in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood.

Jim Murphy (author) American author

Jim Murphy is an American author of more than 35 nonfiction and fiction books for children, young adults, and general audiences, including more than 30 about American history. He won the Margaret A. Edwards Award from the American Library Association in 2010 for his contribution in writing for teens.

Richard Peck (writer)

Richard Wayne Peck was an American novelist known for his prolific contributions to modern young adult literature. He was awarded the Newbery Medal in 2001 for his novel A Year Down Yonder. For his cumulative contribution to young-adult literature, he received the Margaret A. Edwards Award from the American Library Association in 1990.

Markus Zusak

Markus Zusak is an Australian writer with Austrian and German roots. He is best known for The Book Thief and The Messenger, two novels which became international bestsellers. He won the Margaret A. Edwards Award in 2014.

Jennifer Donnelly American writer of young adult fiction

Jennifer Donnelly is an American writer of young adult fiction best known for the historical novel A Northern Light.

The Alex Awards annually recognize "ten books written for adults that have special appeal to young adults ages 12 through 18". Essentially, the award is a listing by the American Library Association parallel to its annual Best Books for Young Adults, a longer list of recommended books that have been promoted in the YA category. Since 2002, the Alex Awards have been administered by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). YALSA also names several other "Top Tens" annually.

The Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production is an annual award conferred by the American Library Association upon the publisher of "the best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States". It is jointly administered by two ALA divisions and sponsored by Booklist magazine. It recognizes production quality in all respects, considering such things as narration, sound quality, background music and sound effects. It is named for Homer's eighth century BCE epic poem Odyssey, which was transmitted orally, to remind us modern people of the ancient roots of storytelling.

The William C. Morris YA Debut Award is an annual award given to a work of young adult literature by a "first-time author writing for teens". It is administered by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). It was named for twentieth-century American publisher William C. Morris, whom YALSA calls an innovator and "an influential innovator in the publishing world and an advocate for marketing books for children and young adults". The award is funded by the William C. Morris Endowment, established in 2000 and activated in 2003 with a bequest of $400,000 from the Morris estate. Morris gave the money to ALA to fund programs, publications, events, or awards in promotion of children's literature. In addition to being a member of ALA, Morris was the first recipient of its Distinguished Service Award in 1992. The shortlist for the first award was announced on December 8, 2008, and the winner was announced on January 26, 2009, at the ALA's midwinter meeting.

The Margaret A. Edwards Award is an American Library Association (ALA) literary award that annually recognizes an author and "a specific body of his or her work, for significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature". It is named for Margaret A. Edwards (1902–1988), the pioneer, longtime director of young adult services at Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore.

Margaret Alexander Edwards was an American educator and librarian who was at the forefront of the movement for young adult services in the 20th century. She is the namesake of the Margaret Edwards Award for young adult literature.

<i>Bomb</i> (book)

Bomb: The Race to Build—and Steal—the World's Most Dangerous Weapon is a 2012 adolescent non-fiction book by author Steve Sheinkin. The book won the 2013 Newbery Honor and Sibert Medal from the American Library Association. This book follows the process of building the nuclear bomb by the discovery of nuclear fission by German scientist Otto Hahn on December 17, 1938.

Elizabeth Acevedo Dominican-American poet and author

Elizabeth Acevedo is a Dominican-American poet and author. She is the author of The Poet X, With the Fire on High and Clap When You Land. The Poet X is a New York Times Bestseller, National Book Award Winner, and Carnegie Medal winner. She is also the winner of the 2019 Michael L. Printz Award, the 2018 Pura Belpre Award, and the Boston-Globe Hornbook Award Prize for Best Children’s Fiction of 2018. She lives in Washington, DC.

The 2019 Youth Media Awards were held by the American Library Association on January 28, 2019. The awards recognize books written for children and young adults and the authors and illustrators who create them.


  1. "About YALSA".
  2. "Brief History of the Young Adult Services Division".
  3. "YASD A Narrative History from 1976 to 1992".
  4. "YALSA: History From 1992 to 2000".
  5. "YALSA Products and Publications".
  6. 1 2 Carter, Betty. "Who Is Margaret Edwards and What Is This Award Being Given In Her Honor?". The ALAN Review (Spring 1992): 45–48. Archived from the original on December 26, 2008. Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  7. "YALSA's Alex Awards". American Library Association. Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  8. "Margaret A. Edwards Award" . Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  9. "Margaret A. Edwards Winners" . Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  10. "Morris Award" . Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  11. "Previous Morris Winners". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). December 3, 2010.
  12. "About the Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production". American Library Association. 2008. Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  13. "Odyssey Award". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). February 27, 2012.
  14. "Michael L. Printz Award" . Retrieved 2013-03-30.
  15. "Printz Award". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). February 27, 2012.
  16. "Previous YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults Winners" . Retrieved 2013-04-01.