Client Report

Graphic Novels, Comics and Manga: Educating Juvenile and Young Adult Readers

Client: Celia Strickland

Prepared by Shannon Leaper

Submitted May 2, 2011

Section I: Search Request On April 24, 2011 I received your search request via email. Your research topic: Can graphic novels, comics, or manga boost either the motivation of children and young adults to read or their reading ability and comprehension? In your request you also indicated acceptable information would be dated 2000 to 2011 and would be from scholarly journals, web pages or any other source of legitimate research. You also indicted the audience would be college students and that you preferred information in English, although foreign resources were okay. Additionally, you requested at least three resources with statistics and/or graphs. On April 24, I requested the following additional information to clarify the results you were looking for: 1. Have you already done research on this subject? If so, where there articles you felt gave you some insight on the information you were looking for that could be expounded on? 2. How do you intend to use this information? Will you be doing a research paper later or is this a subject you are interested in and wish to learn more about? 3. Do you wish to focus more on motivating readers or on the comprehension level of readers? 4. You mentioned children and young adults as your focus. Is there a particular age range you wish to know more about or are you looking for any data which shows an improvement in reading regardless of age? Your response on April 26 indicated that although you have not done specific research on the subject, you have read an article within the last year that indicated graphic novels helped circulation statistics. You also expressed an interest as to whether graphic novels help educate readers in any way. You are looking for evidence that shows graphic novels do more than just entertain and indicated if you could prove educational or instructive value, you would have more support for requesting a budget increase in this area. You also mentioned that although resources that focus on any age range would be helpful, you would like the opportunity to use the results for developing both the Young Adult and Juvenile collections.


Shannon Leaper

Section II: Sources Consulted For you search request, I consulted the following databases: Academic Search Complete This daily updated, multi-disciplinary database covers 10,600 publications and provides content going back as far as 1887. Research Library (at ProQuest) Providing coverage from 1971 to present, Research Library supports full-text access to thousands of articles on a variety of academic subjects. Library Literature & Information Science (H.W. Wilson) This database created for librarians, indexes articles and book reviews from library and information science periodicals and contains over 242,000 records dating back to 1980. Gale Group Magazine Database (in DIALOG) A general interest database containing indexes, abstracts and full text records from more than 400 popular magazines. H.W. Wilson’s Graphic Novels Core Collection database Found at this subscription database highlights approximately 2,000 titles with descriptive and evaluative annotations. Section III: Search Strategies I began searching your request in a general subject database called Academic Search Complete. I originally focused on the terms graphic novels, comics and manga as well as young adult readers and juveniles. A search of Subject Terms in Academic Search Complete led me to the following terms: - graphic novels - comic books, strips, etc. in education - manga (Art) - children’s literature in place of juvenile literature - young adult literature and young adult fiction in place of young adult books Additionally, I located the following terms I deemed of interest: - reading comprehension, reading enrichment - education - literacy programs However, when searching, I discovered limits to using any form of terms increase or promote in conjunction with the term reading. In Academic Source Complete and Library Literature and Information Science I used some form of the following two searches: graphic novel* OR comic book* OR manga* AND educat* 3|Page Shannon Leaper

graphic novel* OR comic book* OR manga* AND increase* N3 read* In Research Library I used: cabs(educat*) AND cabs(“graphic novel*” OR “comic book*” or manga) Truncation in all cases was the most useful although in many cases the subject terms were indicated in the plural. I set the date limiter to 2000-2011 in all three databases. I identified two databases in DialIndex to search in DIALOG, Gale Group Magazine Database and Library Literature and Information Science. Since the Gale Group Magazine Database resulted in more hits with my initial broad search, I used that database. Section IV: Key Findings Graphic novels have often been disregarded as a form of literature but as more teachers are discovering their value as tools to lure reluctant readers, graphic novels have become main stream. Now recognized as a tool for supporting literacy, comprehension, knowledge and creative thinking, manga and graphic novels are finding their place onto library shelves and into the hands of juvenile and young adult readers. Several studies claim that graphic novels and manga require multimodal reading skills and sharp critical thinking skills. Often these manga is used not only as tool for teaching reading skills but also as a tool for teaching cultural studies. Reluctance on the part of teachers to allow students to read graphic novels in the classroom has melted away in face of students actually reading something they are interested in. More teachers are discovering graphic novels and incorporating them into their lessons. Teachers are finding use for graphic novels as a source for increasing student confidence as readers and developing their enjoyment of reading, thereby promoting literacy for juveniles and young adults. Librarians are discovering they cannot keep manga and graphic novels on their shelves as students and patrons check out the genre at a dizzying pace. Section V: Make Recommendations In this digital and graphic age, new possibilities for learning and creating knowledge are emerging. Studies show students engaging in learning from new kinds of curriculum such as graphic novels. As you have indicated an interest in increasing your libraries graphic novel and manga collection if you could prove educational or instructive value, I would make the following recommendations as a source of research for developing your collection: The American Library Association’s Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) maintains a list of Great Graphic Novels for Teens list as well as a Top Ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens list. These graphic novels are nominated yearly. 4|Page Shannon Leaper

Another interesting source of literature comes from the website of the National Association of Comics Arts Educators www. is the homepage of NACAE, the National Association of Comics Art Educators. The association’s objective is to provide resources for educators to share ideas in comic art. There are several teaching resources available that provide teaching materials as well as a directory of comic educators. Although not necessarily focused on graphic novels and manga, this organization helps educate teachers on the use of comics as a way of teaching objectives. Finally, H.W. Wilson’s Graphic Novels Core Collection subscription database available to public libraries, colleges, universities and school media centers includes two thousand suggested titles with brief descriptions, annotations, partial reviews and age appropriateness ratings.

Section VI: Bibliography Resources with statistics and/or graphs: Weitkamp, E., & Burnet, F. (2007). The chemedian brings laughter to the chemistry classroom. International Journal of Science Education, 29(15), 1911-1929. doi:10.1080/ 09500690701222790 Williams, V., & Peterson, D. V. (2009). Graphic novels in libraries supporting teacher education and librarianship programs. Library Resources & Technical Services, 53(3), 166-173. Wright, G., & Sherman, R. B. (2006). Comics redux. Reading Improvement, 43(4), 165-172. Other resources: Allen, K., & Ingulsrud, J. (2003). Manga literacy: Popular culture and the reading habits of Japanese college students. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 46(8), 674-683. Botzaki, S. (2009). Adult fans of comic books: What they get out of reading. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 53(1), 50-59. Bringelson, C., & Glass, N. (2010). Comics in the educational sphere. School Library Monthly, 26(10), Carlson, I. (2008). Graphic novels in the classroom. School Librarian’s Workshop, suppl. School Begins, 29(1), 22. Cho, G., Choi, H., & Krashen, S. (2005). Hooked on comic book reading: How comic books made an impossible situation less difficult. Knowledge Quest, 33(4), 32-34. Crawford, P. (2004). A novel approach: Using graphic novels to attract reluctant readers and promote literacy. Library Media Connection, 22(5). Cred for comics. (2008). School Library Journal, 54(6), 16. Downey, E. M. (2009). Graphic novels in curriculum and instruction collections. Reference & User Services Quarterly, 49(2), 181-188. Fisher, D. (2008). Struggling adolescent readers. (What works). Teacher Librarian, 35(3), 36-37. 5|Page Shannon Leaper

Frey, N., & Fisher, D. (2004). Using graphic novels, anime, and the internet in an urban high school. English Journal, 93(3), 19. Griffith, P. E. (2010). Graphic novels in the secondary classroom and school libraries. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 54(3), 181-189. Gorman, M. (2008). Educational manga?. Library Media Connection, 26(4), 49. Leckbee, J. (2005). I got graphic! Using visual literature works!. Young Adult Library Services, 3(4), 3031. McPherson, K. (2006). Graphic literacy. Teacher Librarian, 33(4), 67-69. McTaggart, J. (2005). Using comics and graphic novels to encourage reluctant readers. Reading Today, 23(2), 46. Schwartz, A. & Rubinstein-Avila, E. (2006). Understanding the manga hype: Uncovering the multimodality of comic-book literacies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 50(1), 40-49. Schwarz, G. (2010). Graphic novels. Curriculum & Teaching Dialogue, 12(1/2), 43-65. Scordato, J. (2004). Getting graphic! Using graphic novels to promote literacy with preteens and teens. Library Media Connection, 23(1), 85. Seyfried, J. (2008). Graphic novels as educational heavyweights. Knowledge Quest, 36(3), 44-48. Stauffer, S. M. (2007). Developing children’s interest in reading. Library Trends 56(2), 402-423. Viadero, D. (2009). Scholars see comics as no laughing matter. Education Week, 28(21), 1-11. Weiner, S. (2004). Show, don’t tell: Graphic novels in the classroom. English Journal, 94(2), 114-117. White, B. (2011). The world in words & pictures: How graphic novels can help to increase reading comprehension for students with hearing loss. Knowledge Quest, 39(3).


Shannon Leaper

Section VII: Search History Appendix Figure 1. Search performed in Academic Search Complete.

Figure 2. Search performed in Academic Search Complete.


Shannon Leaper

Figure 3. Search performed in Research Library (at ProQuest).

Figure 4. Search performed in Library Literature and Information Science (H.W. Wilson).


Shannon Leaper

Figure 5. Search performed in Gale Group Magazine Database (in DIALOG).


? S S1 AND (MOTIVAT?(4N)READ?) 1345 46552 510220 746 28 S1 MOTIVAT? READ? MOTIVAT?(4N)READ? S1 AND (MOTIVAT?(4N)READ?)


Figure 5. Demonstration search performed in the H.W. Wilson’s Graphic Novels Core Collection database tutorial (.pdf of tutorial only, not an original search).


Shannon Leaper