2022-2023 Graduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 23, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Library and Information Science, MS

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Megan Oakleaf
Program Director
Hinds Hall
(315) 443-2911




As part of the School of Information Studies, the Library and Information Science (LIS) program provides foundational grounding in the knowledge, skills, and values of librarianship by educating leaders in the library and information profession who will implement and advocate for information justice, equity, and community engagement in their communities of practice. LIS coursework stresses both the theory and practice of library and information science. It includes educational opportunities beyond formal coursework through one-on-one interaction with the faculty; hands-on learning in libraries and information centers; exposure to leaders in the profession; and direct participation in research projects. The program is offered in both campus and online learning formats and can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. The focus on information justice, equity, and community engagement will be applied and demonstrated through core courses focusing on access and use of information, community information use and users, cultural responsiveness, organization of information and knowledge, evaluation of knowledge, knowledge producing, dissemination and preservation systems, leadership, advocacy, social justice, and best practices for information management.

Student Learning Outcomes

By the completion of their program, MSLIS students will be prepared effectively to:

  1. Advance information equity and justice by applying professional ethics, values, and standards to work towards a just and equitable information society.
  2. Connect, engage, and collaborate with users and their communities through the provision of inclusive resources, services, and spaces.
  3. Design and innovate to create equitable, just, and engaging information artifacts, including services, systems, spaces, resources, and technologies. 
  4. Lead and manage people and projects in an equitable, just, and culturally responsive manner.
  5. Demonstrate information literacy and technological agility.


The 36-credit LIS curriculum is designed to prepare librarians who have the broad range of knowledge and skills needed for exemplary practice in the library and information profession. Students in the School Media specialization should consult the School Media specific curriculum.

I. Core Knowledge and Skills (15 credits)

LIS core courses provide a solid grounding in the knowledge, skills, and values of the library and information profession. The 18-credit LIS core has three parts:

Introductory Core (3 credits)

IST 511 Cultural Foundations of Information Studies

Management Core (3 credits)

II. Electives (18 credits)

Students take 18 credits of electives allow students to extend their core knowledge and skills in directions of their choice. Electives can be selected from graduate courses in the iSchool, including those from the Information Management or Data Science programs. In selecting courses that are not LIS-focused, the student should consult with his/her faculty advisor to ensure their appropriateness. A student should consider how any elective will add to his/her knowledge and skill set as an emerging professional.

III. Exit Requirement (3 credits)

The exit requirement for the LIS degree is IST 773, a three-credit reflective portfolio.

Students are expected to take IST 773 in the final term of the MSLIS program to facilitate a holistic, comprehensive, and reflective demonstration of the competencies they’ve learned in the program by drawing from across their classes and experiences to show what they have learned.

The primary purpose of this course is to allow students to reflect on their body of work and make explicit connections among coursework and experience.

Programs of Study for Specific Types of Libraries or Library Positions:

The generalist core provides a solid grounding in the knowledge and skills of librarianship. Most electives are designed to provide conceptual and practical knowledge and skills that apply across types of libraries. For students wishing to prepare for a specific type of library or position, there are many ways to tailor your program of study to these interests. These include:

  • Choosing topics pertaining to your areas of interest for papers and projects in core and elective courses.
  • Choosing an iSchool Certificate of Advanced Study to combine with the master’s degree.
  • Choosing electives that are particularly appropriate for a particular type of library or position: see the section on advising guides below.
  • Developing an elective internship that gives you practical experience in your area of interest.

Your advisor can work with you to plan a program of study that will prepare you for positions in your area of interest while also providing you with a solid generalist knowledge that will allow you to take advantage of unexpected opportunities.

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