Research Overview

The CCB supports ongoing research from its faculty affiliates and other scholars in the areas of youth literature and media, its history and the history of youth librarianship, and storytelling and folklore. Please contact the director, Deborah Stevenson, to arrange for research support from the CCB.

Youth, Literature, & Culture | Closing the App Gap

Youth, Literature, & Culture

The Youth, Literature, & Culture group (YLC) is an interdisciplinary collaboration of faculty and doctoral students from the University of Illinois, Illinois State University, and Eastern Illinois University.

In formal existence since 2004, this group brings together faculty and doctoral students who share a scholarly interest in children’s and young adult literature and media. We represent various disciplines, including Education, English, History, Library and Information Science, and discuss research on young people, texts, and cultural contexts. Please email Deborah Stevenson for more details.


Closing the App Gap

App Gap Title

From Plan to Project

Since November of 2013, researchers at the School of Information Sciences have been investigating a particular facet of the digital divide: the growing disparity between kids with and without access to apps at home, at school, and in the library. In collaboration with the Douglass Branch of the Champaign Public Library, researchers Deborah Stevenson, Kate McDowell, and Cass Mabbott recently completed the Closing the App Gap project, a yearlong planning grant to learn more about the current app situation among today’s youth.

App Authors

Following the results of the recently completed planning grant, we are thrilled to announce that The Institute of Museum and Library Services has recently awarded the School of Information Sciences with grant funding to pursue “App Authors: Closing the App Gap II.”

Led by principal investigator Deborah Stevenson and co-PI Kate McDowell, this multi-year grant project will focus on hands-on app creation as a way to encourage STEM involvement among young learners from diverse backgrounds. The School of Information Sciences will partner with schools and libraries across the country to develop a curriculum for children aged eight to twelve, for eventual use in other library and school settings. Through this project, children will both develop their own apps and share them with others, highlighting their achievements and learning about others’ as well.

For additional information about the ongoing App Authors project, please click here.