Course Catalog

Children's Literature (MA)


The Master of Arts (MA) degree in Children’s literature offers specialized study of books for children and young adults to students who are, or who intend to be, involved in teaching, library work, editing, publishing, writing, affiliated professions, and/or further research and scholarship in the field.


Learning Outcomes

Students leave Master of Arts (MA) in Children’s Literature with an extensive theoretical context and a broad knowledge of contemporary literature for children and young adults. In graduating, they have:

  • Developed a critical voice and demonstrated the capacity for original argument;
  • Analyzed literature for children and young adults;
  • Assessed and interpreted scholarship in the field of children’s and young adult literature;
  • Applied critical perspectives across genres in children’s and young adult literature;
  • Understood historical works, contexts, and influences in the field;
  • Valued the diversities of human experiences (re)presented in literature for children and young adults and in the scholarship in the field; and
  • Demonstrated individual and collaborative leadership.


Requirements for entry into program

Admission requires a baccalaureate degree, often with a major in English and American and/or comparative literature from an accredited institution. The program also welcomes applicants with majors in elementary or secondary education, fine arts, social sciences, or sciences who have done work in English, art, or children’s /young adult literature. Applicants must submit official transcripts of all degree work, two letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, a resume, and, for international students, the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). An interview, though not required, is strongly recommended. Admission deadlines are rolling for all three semesters. A maximum of four semester hours of transfer credit will be allowed toward the degree; the petition for transfer credit is due at the time of application.



Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements (36 credits)

Graduate students in the MA degree program typically carry between eight and ten (8 - 10) credits in the fall, spring, and summer semesters after their first semester. Students considering registering for more than 10 credits per term must consult with the graduate program director.
CHL 401Criticism of Literature for Children


CHL 403The Picturebook


CHL 413Contemporary Realistic Fiction


CHL 414Fantasy and Science Fiction


Plus 4 credits of courses designated as (h) in the list of elective courses above.


Elective courses:
The remaining 16 credits are completed by drawing from a variety of two- and four-credit electives. Electives cover a range of academic and professional interests. See the list of general electives above. A student’s academic advisor will be an invaluable partner in determining which electives to take to meet the student’s immediate interest and to build their professional portfolio.