Library and Information Science BA

Frequently Asked Questions

How many hours are required for the BA in LIS?

The library and information science (LIS) major requires completion of the general education core courses as well as 39 hours of major-area courses, 15-21 hours of major requirements outside the department (including 12 hours of foreign language), an 18-hour minor or dual major in another department and enough electives to bring the total number of hours to 124. Major-area courses begin in the junior year.

What is the cost of attendance (tuition)?

Visit our undergraduate admissions for tuition information.

Will I ever need to come to the Southern Miss campus?  Is the program truly entirely online?

All LIS courses are offered online and other courses, if not offered online by USM, can be taken through the Mississippi Virtual Community College while enrolled at USM for USM credit.  You will not need to come to the Southern Miss campus.

Why is your class size is limited? I thought online courses could handle thousands?

Our classes involve students with faculty. There are real-time chats, weekly chat meetings, discussion board assignments, reading and writing assignments, basically a class taught in cyberspace. In order to properly serve our students, we limit the number of seats in our classes to ensure the faculty member can interact appropriately with the students. These are not correspondence courses. They are semester-length courses taught within a typical semester structure. The courses are NOT "come when you please and do what you like." If you are looking for a grade for enrolling, then do not apply to Southern Miss. You will have to earn a grade. It will require long hours on your part, just like face-to-face graduate classes.

I just want to take a couple of courses to see if this is what I want to do. Can I do that?

Contact the school to be advised as a nondegree student at (601) 266-4228 or by email at   


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We offer a supplemental endorsement for school library media specialists.  It is available completed online.  Find more information on the supplemental endorsement.

What if I cannot find the answer to my question here?

If you still have questions, please e-mail us at or call (601) 266-4228.

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