Booklist Selection Criteria

The criteria:

The aim of the Premier’s Reading Challenge is to encourage a love of reading for pleasure, interest, and information.

In order to achieve this, the booklist panel undertakes to provide a list of diverse and interesting books of the highest quality, which are easily accessible for libraries and schools through publishers. The booklists include:

    • Fiction
    • Non-fiction
    • Illustrated and picture books
    • Poetry and drama
    • Classic, modern and contemporary books
    • Graphic novels
  • Each book will be in one of the four recommended age-appropriate reading lists: Reception—2, Years 3-5, Years 6-9 and Mature (Years 9-12).
  • Each book will include an annotation and be allocated to at least one category to indicate what the book is about.
  • Recommendations come from many sources including teacher librarians, teachers, public librarians, students, reviewing journals and websites, Children’s Book Council of Australia notable and shortlisted titles, publishers, authors, and booklist panel members.
  • Books will only be included if they are of the highest quality for each of the reading levels and of a similar level to those already on the booklists.
  • Selections are made with attention to the integrity required for a program bearing the Premier of South Australia’s name.

When selecting books, the panel will consider:

  • The diverse interests of students including recreational needs
  • Respecting inclusivity
  • Students with specific needs
  • The Australian Curriculum
  • Ready availability of books
  • Publishing dates of books to keep lists current, if relevant
  • Books reflecting the local community, South Australian and Australian heritage as well as books covering global issues
  • Whether the content is already well represented in the booklists
  • A range of formats, including Braille, large print, electronic, and audio books
  • Ability to allocate into a specific reading level
  • The authority and reputation of the authors and publishers
  • Appropriateness of the plot, theme and characters for the year level
  • Well-designed, high quality books with clear print and illustrations that complement the text, enhancing the reading experience
  • Editorial rigour in proofing, editing, layout and illustrations
  • Avoidance of bias, stereotypes and clichés
  • Novelty books and products generally will not be accepted
  • Non-fiction books should:
    • be current, with relevant and accurate information and illustrations with captions
    • be organised with information made accessible through such things as layout, a table of contents, index and a glossary
    • include such things as diagrams, maps, graphs, photographs, and drawings which are labelled and acknowledged.
  • The panel has expertise in selecting books for school and public libraries and meets regularly to update and review the booklists. Books are occasionally removed to keep the booklists current or because of a request to review the book.


  • All selections are made in line with: Department for Education (2020) Selecting and using resources for educational purposes guideline


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Have a question about the Challenge?

Please email our Premier’s Reading Challenge mailbox or call for assistance. We look forward to hearing from you.