INFO 265-10
Materials for Young Adults
Fall 2020 Syllabus

Professor Beth Wrenn-Estes, Lecturer
E-mail (preferred)
Cell Phone – 510-410-1959
Office Hours: By Appointment

Syllabus Links
Modules/Weekly Outlines
Points Allocation Chart
Discussion Threads
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Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning August 19th, 2019, at 6 am PT unless you are taking an intensive or a one-unit or two-unit class that starts on a different day. In that case, the class will open on the first day that the class meets.

You will be enrolled in the Canvas site automatically.

Course Description

This course will allow students to take an in-depth look at materials in a variety of formats for teens ages 15-18, including fiction, popular nonfiction, graphic novels, movies, computer games, websites, other media, and determine how they can meet developmental needs.

Corona Virus

Not knowing what will happen with the pandemic as we enter the fall semester or what libraries may be closed or open will warrant instructor monitoring whether materials are readily available. The class has a lot of reading in young adult fiction and non-fiction throughout the instructor “may” have to make adjustments to assignments as needed. 

Students should review the reading assignments and check out local library collections and borrowing opportunities to secure books necessary to complete assignments as indicated. Any changes in assignments will be announced by the instructor on the Canvas course site.

Course Requirements

  • Students are greatly encouraged to read the Syllabus carefully and review the Canvas course website content. If you have questions contact the instructor through the "Ask the Professor" discussion thread.

  •  The Syllabus and Canvas Course site work in tandem with each other to give students directions, requirements, and information needed to be successful in Materials for Young Adults

  • Each student is expected to check the CANVAS site at least once per day for course updates, posting of additional resources, announcements, and other information posted by the instructor.  

  • The instructor makes every effort to proofread the information in both the syllabus and on the Canvas course website. However, errors do occur. 

  • If you see something that doesn’t look correct please let the instructor know by placing where you see the error on the “Ask the Professor” discussion thread. Please be as specific as to where you found the error – makes it easier for the instructor to answer the question quickly.


This class is meant to be a joyous journey through Young Adult Materials and the only way I know to really understand Young Adult Literature is to read and write about it and learn as much as you can about the young adults who are drawn to it.

The class also includes learning about other materials – movies, music, gaming and more. Be prepared and get ready to become a passionate, if you are not already, fan of all things Young Adult.

E-mail Subject Lines/Naming of Assignment Files – Mandatory

  • Format for subject line for all email correspondence:
  • Format the file name for all of your assignments:

E-mail Response Time: Instructor answers email on a regular basis throughout the day and evenings.

Official School of Information Email Policy:

  • Instructor responds to student emails within 24-hours of receipt. The instructor will inform the class if a longer response time is needed (instructor out of town, illness, etc.).
  • Students are expected to promptly answer emails from the instructor and fellow students.


Please CALL, TEXT, or EMAIL the instructor (in advance) if a situation will prevent you from completing an assignment or another class activity (Zoom session). You may receive a zero for any course assignment or activity missed unless you have received permission from the instructor for an extension. Most extensions are granted for only extenuating circumstances.

The instructor reserves the right to deduct points (the number of points is determined by the instructor) for any work not submitted on time or lack of participation in any class activities or assignment.

Course Calendar
Subject to change with fair notice.

Technology Requirements
You will need a high-speed connection (DSL, cable, etc.) to successfully participate in this class.

GRADING – see scale below

Rounding – The instructor does not round up to the next number. If you receive an 89.6 on an assignment or as your final point total will be compared to the grading scale to determine your grade.

Grading/Grading Rubric

Rubrics – The Instructor uses several rubrics for determining participation, oral, and written communication, that are posted on the Canvas sites under ASSIGNMENTS RUBRICS/EVALUATION FORMS.

For certain assignments, the instructor will complete an evaluation form that will give you input on your work along with the points allocated for each section. If the format of the assignment is to produce a paper then the instructor usually makes comments within the paper itself. Students should read through the general rubrics then look at the evaluation form if one is provided. If there is an instructor created evaluation form it will appear on the specific assignment description – Assignments link is on the left-hand column.




Due Date(s)


Watch and Reflect - PAPER

Students will watch pre-recorded sessions with three authors and write a 5-7 page paper on content and reflections (does not include title page or resource page).

Full description of the assignment will be available when course site opens.


Friday, 10/2 (Wk 7)


Comps: A, M

CLO's 1,3


Speakers TBD

Session Attendance -  5 pts

Reflection Paper - Due Thursday, October 8th - 2 pts (Submit to assignment dropbox)



Tues, 10/6 (Wk 8)

Comps: A, M

CLO's 1,3,4


Speakers –TBD

Session Attendance – 5 pts

Reflection Paper - Due Thursday,  November 12th – 2 points (Submit to assignment dropbox)


Tues, 11/10 (Wk 13)

Comps: A, M

CLO's 1,3,4

Genre Study (Paper)

Research Project - See course site for a detailed description of the assignment. 


Friday, 11/20 (Wk 14)

Comps: F, I, M

CLO's 2,3,5




Mini YA Collection Project (Blog)
See course site for a detailed description of the assignment. 



Sunday, 12/6
(Wk 16) 

Comps: A,F,I,M



Discussion Threads (9 total):  Prompts will be given for each thread. Threads will open with sufficient time for all students to prepare for the discussions. No posts are allowed before the first day of the thread and no posts after the thread closes.

Week 1   
August 19 - August 23rd
Short Video Introduction 
(2-3 minutes)  
1 point 

33 points

See schedule for pts by thread 

 See Schedule

A, F, I, M


Week 3     
August 31 to September 6
Discussion of Teen Brain and Emotional Development                  
4 points 




Week 4       
September 7 to September 13
Discussion of Dangerous Angels by Block (Read 2 of the 5 books included)
4 points


Week 5        
September 14 to September 20
Discussion of Chinese Handcuffs by Crutcher
4 points 



Week 7
September 28 to October 4
Discussion of Unwind by Shusterman
4 points

Week 9    
October 12 to October 18
Discussion of Hello Kiddo by Krosoczka
4 points

Week 11    
October 26 to November 1
Discussion of Inferno by Stevenson
4 points


Week 13    
November 9 to November 15
Discussion of Someday I'll Fly by DeWoskin
4 points


Week 15
November 23 to November 29 
Discussion of Poet X by Acevedo
4 points 


From Romance to Realism(3rd Edition) by Cart is the course textbook and chapters are assigned as follows:  Week 2 Chapters 1/2, Week 3 Chapters 3/4/5, Week 5 Chapters 6/7/8,
Week 6 Chapters 9/10/11, Week 7 Chapters 12/13/14, and Week 9 Chapters 15/16/17. 



TOTAL 100    


The instructor reserves the right to determine the number of points to deduct for any assignments not completed on time or turned in past the stated due date. Exception - Instructor grants extensions when extenuating circumstances warrant it and gives student alternate due date for specific assignments but only if the student contacts the instructor in advance of the extension need. In most cases, extensions are only given for medical or family emergencies.

All assignments, overviews, and lectures, will be provided in written, audio or audio/visual form. Written transcripts will be provided when appropriate. 

The instructor will act as a moderator/facilitator for all discussion threads The instructor may comment from time-to-time on the posts but the discussions are to be student-driven.


  • Check the Assignment Chart (above) to see the dates for each discussion thread. All threads begin on Monday at 12:01 a.m. Pacific and end on Sundays at 5 p.m. pacific except for the first thread which is during a short week. Please note the dates of each thread carefully. DO NOT POST BEFORE A THREAD OPENS.
  • Stay on Track– These discussion threads carry a lot of weight for your overall grade in the class. You need to make sure you have posted a minimum of  2 substantial posts during the week and 2 responses to classmates. Suggest posting on Tuesday and Thursday. 
  • The definition of “substantial” means writing an in-depth narrative post on the topic of the thread each week and writing at least 150 words for each of the substantial posts each week. The post should not just be from the class texts but research beyond provided sources as well as others you find on your own - it's not just about reading the book but also looking into a bit about the book and the author.
  • Any Citations should be put at the bottom of the post in APA format. It is important to include your own thoughts and opinions in the thread as well as from experts in the field.
  • Do not post all comments on the same day! This will result in a reduction of points. Think of discussion threads as conversations taking place as if you were in a f2f class.
  • Full points will be awarded to students who write in-depth insights and opinions about the weekly topic in each of their substantial posts. 
  • If students do not post the required number of posts or do not include the level of detail in the substantial posts required points will be deducted.


  • Video Introduction worth 1 point/1 post

  • For the thread worth 4 points – substantial posts are 1.75 points each and the responses to classmates are worth .25 each.

  • The instructor will include questions or prompts with each book discussion thread to get the conversation going but students are charged with keeping the discussion going throughout the week.

  • Doing more than the minimum number of posts is greatly encouraged.


Please review the Canvas site when it opens on August 19th. You will be responsible for understanding everything that is included. If you have questions please post them to the "Ask the Professor" discussion thread.

Weekly outlines (appear on Canvas Course Site) will have more descriptive content than indicated including, but not limited to: descriptions of all assignments, overviews/lectures, readings, and websites to review.

The individual weekly module is designed to give you information about what is being covered that week, lecture/overviews, any assignment due, if there is a discussion thread, etc.

General Writing Standards - ALL ASSIGNMENTS

  • Students must produce assignments that meet writing and research standards appropriate for students in a Master’s program of study. Write clearly. See Rubric for Writing under Assignments.
  • It is critical to proofread your work and then proofread it again before turning it in.
  • You will lose points for errors in spelling and grammar. All assignments are to be written in a middle ground academic style using a clear voice and tone. Informal writing except in reflection papers is not allowed.
  • Please refer to a style handbook - a suggestion is Strunk and White’s Elements of Style.

Spelling and Grammar Guidelines

The instructor may not read your entire assignment for spelling and grammar mistakes. If, in the instructor’s opinion, the assignment contains too many errors the instructor will reduce the points in that section of the rubric and stop grading the assignment for grammar and spelling and will go on to content, research, etc.


Blogs must have a banner on the homepage. The following information must appear on the homepage of the blog:

  • Name of Student 
  • Title of assignment
  • Class number and title
  • Name of Instructor
  • University Name 
  • Date of Assignment.
  • If you want to make up a name for your blog you can do so but the Assignment Name instructor has given must appear first and then your title next.
  • You may use an existing blog that you have for assignments from other classes but the instructor must have a clear path to the blog for this class and not have to do any un-necessary searching to find it. 
  • Blogs must look professional and have color themes, font choice, and navigation (live links to all sections of blog for instance from the homepage) picked to enhance the assignment. Use the many features that the blog has and thoroughly review the blog you have chosen so that you know it will accommodate the requirements of the assignment. Remember pictures create visual breaks for the reader and helps clarify points. Books covers are especially important to include when appropriate. Use of illustrations, pictures or embedded videos is encouraged.
  • Pictures should enhance text/narrative but images do not replace written content narratives.
  • Blogs do not have a specific page length but must be of sufficient length to adequately cover the assignment.
  • Blogs are written in the same style as written work. Remember this is not a daily journal type of blog but blog style is the vehicle with which you present academic work. Think moderate but friendly academic level writing and focus on creating a blog that peers, colleagues, teens, and caregivers would find useful. 
  • References and citations within narratives must be in APA format. References can be done as one blog posting at the end of the blog or you can put the references at the bottom of each section of your blog.
  • All images must have a credit for where you obtained it and that credit can be located under the specific image or at the end of the blog.
  • Any other questions not answered in the points above please contact the instructor for further information or clarification.


  • Prepare all assignments in MS Word; please avoid turning in PDF's.
  • Do not exceed the number of pages, if given by the instructor.

 Title Page MUST have:

  • Name of Student
  • Title of Assignment
  • Class number and title
  • Name of Instructor
  • Name of University
  • Date of Assignment

Other points for papers

  • Papers may be either single of double spaced and the font no larger than 12 point. Approved fonts are Arial or Cambria.
  • Page numbers and the name of the assignment must appear on all pages except the title page.
  • Reference page(s) must be included and meet APA guidelines.
  • Citations within the text must be in accordance with APA guidelines.
  • All papers are to be written in active voice and moderate academic style.
  • Remember pictures within the document add visual breaks for the reader and helps many different learning styles. The blog is not to be all narrative. Be creative!!!
  • Any other questions not answered in the information above please contact the instructor.

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

INFO 200INFO 260Aor INFO 261A

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the external (societal) and internal (developmental) forces that influence teens' choices of recreational and informational sources and materials.
  2. Evaluate selection tools, and use appropriate resources to develop a collection of materials for older teens, including all appropriate formats (print, nonprint, computer software, music, etc.).
  3. Critically examine representative materials designed for older teens, including print and nonprint formats, books, graphic novels, television, movies, music, and a wide variety of computer software, including social networking software; apply criteria to evaluate materials in relation to developmental needs, multicultural concerns, and meeting the informational and recreational needs of this age group.
  4. Create an appropriate materials collection for older teens, including print and nonprint materials and a variety of the digital resources currently available for this age group.
  5. Exhibit knowledge of published resources about print and nonprint materials for older teens, such as reference materials, selection tools, and Web sites.
  6. Assist parents and caregivers with questions about appropriate materials for their older teen children.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 265 supports the following core competencies:

  1. A Demonstrate awareness of the ethics, values, and foundational principles of one of the information professions, and discuss the importance of those principles within that profession.
  2. F Use the basic concepts and principles related to the selection, evaluation, organization, and preservation of physical and digital information items.
  3. J Describe the fundamental concepts of information-seeking behaviors and how they should be considered when connecting individuals or groups with accurate, relevant and appropriate information.
  4. M Demonstrate professional leadership and communication skills.


Required Textbooks:

  • Acevedo, E. (2020). The poet X. New York: HarperTeen. Available through Amazon: 0062662813arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Block, F.L. (2010). Dangerous angels: Five Weetzie Bat books. New York: HarperTeen. Available through Amazon: 0062007408arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Cart, M. (2016). Young adult literature: From romance to realism (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: Neal-Schuman Publishers. Available through Amazon: 0838914624arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Crutcher, C. (2009). Chinese handcuffs. New York: Greenwillow Books. Available through Amazon: 0060598395arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • DeWoskin, R. (2019). Someday we will fly. New York: Penguin. Available through Amazon: 0147508916arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Kroscoczka, J. (2018). Hey, kiddo. New York: Graphix. Available through Amazon: 0545902487arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Shusterman, N. (2009). Unwind. New York: Simon & Schuster BFYR. Available through Amazon: 1416912053arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Stevenson, R. (2009). Inferno. Custer, WA: Orca Book Publishers. Available through Amazon: 1554690773arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA or Informatics) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation. You must repeat the class if you wish to stay in the program. If - on the second attempt - you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

Per University Policy S16-9, university-wide policy information relevant to all courses, such as academic integrity, accommodations, etc. will be available on Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Programs' Syllabus Information web page at: Make sure to visit this page, review and be familiar with these university policies and resources.

In order to request an accommodation in a class please contact the Accessible Education Center and register via the MyAEC portal.

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