Circulation of YA Materials



Ann Reed (OR)


I think I always get a bit confused ever since we broke out YA programming.


I recall we discussed this some years ago with the upshot of most states were counting circ of YA materials with total circ, but not children’s materials circ.  I see the definition of children’s materials doesn’t have an age on it to indicate if we are just talking about circ of a juvenile or picture book collection vs. a YA one.


Am I hallucinating??



SDC Comments:


Juan Lee (UT)


Hi Ann,

It could have been mass hallucination (you never know what they put in the water at SDC Conferences) because I seem to recall the same conversation. However, my own definitions do not have an age specified for CIRC. We do use age for PROGRAMS though:


Children are defined as persons age 11 and under, outlined in The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES): Children and Young Adults Defined [Services and Resources for Children and Young Adults in Public Libraries, August 1995, NCES 95357].



Bruce Pomerantz (MN)


YA is not counted as Children’s materials for circulation. I use the designation Adults for all non-J and include YA there: young adults, adults, older adults, senior geezers, etc.



Susan Mark (WY)


My impression of the children's circ situation when we split out YA programming is that no one wanted to pick up that particular blob of jello and nail it to the tree. I had a vague idea that long, long ago there was a reference to 14 years and under as juvenile circ, but that was not in the official PLSC definition. We simply left ages on children's circ undefined for the time being. I just ask for children's circ from my libraries and don't get too nitpicky, although I think at one point I had the 14-year-old thing in the instructions.


So, should we define that more clearly? What flavor jello would you prefer?



Dianne Carty (MA)


Well, this is what I have in place for definitions since the discussion several years back:


Children:  11 and under

YA:  12 through 18

Adult: over 18



Edie Huffman (IN)


We actually use the definition from ALA’s YA group in our standards for materials and programs (they have to provide YA materials and programs).  Circulation is still children and adults, and really, adult is anyone over 18, so yes, it covers a lot but we should not be subdividing adults by age-too much of labeling already.



IMLS Response:


I located the conversation about circulation of children’s materials and YA posted on the “Questions Comments Feedback Input Corrections” PLSC wiki page.

Circulation - Total, Children and do we separate out Young Adult?  (there is an additional question on this page dated 2/4/2010)


I had also posted Carlos’s response from that conversation  (10/21/2009)  on the 551 Circulation of Children’s Materials definition’s wiki page


A couple of SDCs asked about children's circ being in 2 groups (children and young adult).
Carlos’s response:
Our understanding of the children’s circulation data element is that it is neutral with respect to age. That is, the circulation number is based on the movement of children’s holdings, not the age of the patron checking out the material. Indeed, the definition expressly says that it refers to circulation of children’s materials “to all users” (see below). In short, there would be no reason to redefined the children circulation element for people 11 and under.


Wording of children’s circulation data element: The total annual circulation of all children’s materials in all formats to all users, including renewals.



Ann Reed (OR) 


Carlos’s comment completely misses the point.


By phrasing the element as children’s material circulation, it puts one in mind of Easy, Juvie fiction and Juvie non-fiction material types.  So where to count the circulation of YA material type?  I was including it with children a long time ago, but during the discussion where we broke out YA programming and tried to nail jello to a tree vis a vis YA circulation it came out that most states count YA material circ with adult or total circ.


Since I started to conform to the norm, there has been an outcry from YA  librarians about how YA materials circ belongs with children’s materials circ, except that then children’s materials circ should probably be renamed to youth materials circ. 


To keep the ravening mob off my doorstep, I told them that I’d look into it and maybe suggest some rewording on this in the coming winter.