Jul 16, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog This is not the most recent catalog version; be sure you are viewing the appropriate catalog year.

Children’s and Young Adult Literature [BA]

Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Children’s and Young Adult Literature have the opportunity to interact with works of children’s and young adult literature in multiple ways. Students choose a concentration (literary analysis, publishing, or theatre for the young) that best prepares them for their chosen career or further study.


In the Major in Children’s and Young Adult Literature, students choose one of three flexible and interdisciplinary concentrations to match their particular career, education, and life goals. These concentrations focus on literary analysis of texts for younger audiences, publishing for children and young adults, and drama/theatre for the young. Within each concentration, students explore different genres and categories of texts for children and young adults. They study current issues, debates, and histories about texts created for younger readers, and envision the future of the field. Through reading, research, discussion, and internships, they consider how children’s books reflect and shape individual lives, different cultures, and society as a whole while developing an appreciation for art in multiple formats. The degree’s scholarly, creative, practical, and reflective curriculum and instruction foster critical thinking, reading, research, writing, and presentation skills that are beneficial in many professional contexts.


While pursuing this major, students have opportunities to engage in scholarly research related to texts for young people, to complete creative, multimodal projects and performances, and to share their scholarly and creative work as part of the Undergraduate Research Symposium. Students are also able to participate in hands-on, experiential learning through academic-service learning, Learning Beyond the Classroom courses, and through internships with publishing companies that specialize in children’s and young adult literature.

Students studying Children’s Literature at EMU pursue various career paths that often require additional training, such as post-baccalaureate teacher certification or a graduate degree in library science. As a result, our alumni are able to apply their knowledge of children’s and young adult literature to a variety of exciting careers in teaching, librarianship, publishing, bookselling, writing, or children’s theatre. Former students have enrolled in graduate programs devoted to the study of fields such as children’s literature, children’s theatre, English, cultural studies, or education, which have led them to careers in secondary education.

Department Information

English Language & Literature 612 Pray-Harrold, 734.487.4220 

Joseph Csicsila, PhD, Department Head

Advisor Information

Annette Wannamaker, PhD, Program Coordinator, 603E Pray-Harrold, 734.487.0148

General Education Requirements:

For specific requirements, see General Education  or view the General Education Worksheet [PDF] .  

Major Requirements: 36 hours

The coursework below is offered primarily face-to-face/in-person. Coursework may also be offered in hybrid, hyflex, and online (synchronous or asynchronous) modes. In some cases, a course may only be offered entirely online. Click on the courses below to see when and how they are offered.

All students in the major take a core group of courses in children’s and young adult literature and, together with their faculty advisor, construct one of the three concentrations (literary analysis, publishing, children’s literature and drama/theatre for the young) using a series of restricted electives. 

Because a number of upper-level courses have prerequisites, students should take lower-level (100-level and 200-level) courses in their chosen concentration before moving on to upper-level courses.

Concentration: 21 hours

Choose one concentration from the following. Students must declare their concentration (Declaration Form).

Literary Analysis

Literary Analysis is for students interested in in-depth literary studies or librarianship: students in this concentration choose mostly CHL and LITR courses.


Publishing is for students interested in writing, editing, or marketing children’s books or other roles in the publishing industry. Students in this concentration choose courses in creative writing or the visual arts or courses in marketing, editing, and professional writing.

Drama/Theatre for the Young

Children’s Literature and Drama/Theatre for the Young is for students interested in exploring both children’s literature and theatre for younger audiences. Students in this concentration choose a combination of courses from CHL and CTAR. It is recommended that a student pursuing this concentration complete at least 12-15 hours of ”CTAR” courses.

Minor Requirement:

This major requires a minor. Please see Programs  for a list of available minors or contact your major advisor.

Program Total:

Students must earn a minimum total of 120 credits at the 100-level or above.

Critical Graduation Information

Each undergraduate student will be responsible for fulfilling the requirements (or their equivalents) of the Eastern Michigan University catalog in force at the time of their initial registration at a college or university or a subsequent catalog, including the one in effect at the time of their graduation.

In the event an undergraduate student does not complete the degree requirements within seven years of the date of their original registration at a college or university, the student may be required to have their credits re-evaluated by the academic department(s) of their major/minor in keeping with catalog requirements in force during the year of their graduation.

Minimum requirements for all bachelor’s degrees awarded by Eastern Michigan University

Some majors and minors require more than the minimum in one or more of the areas below; students are urged to consult this catalog for the requirements of their particular programs.

  • Earn a minimum total of 120 credit hours at the 100-level and above.
    • Courses numbered below 100 are not counted toward this degree requirement.
    • At most, eight credit hours of physical education (PEGN) activity courses are counted toward this requirement.
  • Meet the requirements of the General Education program (see information below), including completing a Writing Intensive (GEWI) course in the student’s major.
  • Earn a minimum of 60 credits from a four-year college or university; courses taken at community colleges cannot be used to meet this requirement (Some formal program-to-program articulation agreements modify this requirement. See specific agreements for details).
  • Earn a minimum of 30 credits from courses taken at EMU.
  • Complete 10 of the last 30 hours for the degree from courses taken at EMU.
  • Have a minimum of 30 unique credit hours in their major and 20 unique credit hours in their minor for a total of at least 50 unique credit hours between them. Some majors that require 50 or more hours themselves do not require a minor. A double major automatically satisfies the need for a minor unless one of the two majors requires a specific minor. Students should check the requirements of the selected major in the undergraduate catalog to see if a minor is required. 
  • Earn no more than 60 credit hours in one subject area (prefix). Credits over the 60 maximum will not be counted toward the minimum of 120 credits required for a bachelor’s degree.
  • Earn the minimum number of credits in 300-level and above courses in each major and minor as specified below - these credits must be earned in distinct courses; that is, no course can be used to fulfill this requirement in more than one major or minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 6 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each minor
    • Earn a minimum of 9 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that requires a minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 15 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that does not require a minor
  • Transfer credit will be awarded for courses taken at colleges and universities that are accredited by one of the recognized regional accrediting bodies only if the courses are college-level (equated to 100-level or above at EMU) and the student earned a “C” (or 2.0 on a 4 point scale) or better. Transfer credit may be awarded on a case-by-case basis for college-level courses in which a “C” (2.0) or better was earned at institutions outside the U.S. or at non-accredited U.S. institutions; individual departments/schools conduct the internal review of such courses within EMU, and additional documentation may be required. Please note: EMU awards only credit for transferred courses; grades are not used to calculate an EMU GPA.
  • Earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in courses taken at EMU to graduate. In addition, a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 must be reached in each major and minor. Only courses a student takes at EMU and those applied to their major or minor are used to calculate their major and minor cumulative GPAs. (Note: some programs may require a higher GPA - check with your program advisor.)

General Education Requirements - EMU’s General Education Program requires students to choose from a menu of approved courses in several different areas; do not assume that other courses in the same department or similar names will fulfill these requirements. A detailed description of General Education requirements is available in the General Education  section of the catalog.

Students who transferred to EMU may have modified general education requirements based on Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) or articulation agreements; consult your academic advisor for additional information.