In order to be eligible as a nominee for the Rhode Island Teen Book Award, books must conform to the following:
1. The book must be of interest to teens in grades 9-12.
2. The book must be published within two years of the creation of the nominee list. For example, nominees for the 2019 award were selected by the committee in 2018. For inclusion on the 2019 nominee list, titles had to have been first published in the United States in 2018, 2017, or 2016.
3. The primary consideration of book selection should be quality, but level of young adult interest should also be considered. Only titles published with young adults being the primary audience shall be considered.
4. There are no restrictions based on the home country of the author or whether the author is still living.