Master of Library and Information Science

The School of Library and Information Science offers the MLIS degree online; classes meet each week in virtual classrooms. 

Library and Information Science (MLIS)

The Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) program is flexible, allowing a balance of required courses and elective courses in order to meet the individual needs of each student. The MLIS degree is conferred upon students who have met the following requirements:

  • Earned 40* semester hours of credit consisting of 22 hours of required courses, 15 hours of general electives, and three hours of the master's project
  • Completed a minimum of 18 hours at the 600-level courses
  • Maintained a 3.00 cumulative grade point average
  • Received no grade below a C and no more than one C
  • Completed the graduate program within five years

Required Courses (22 credit hours) - The required courses provide a conceptual basis for understanding basic functions in all types of libraries and information centers.

The required courses are as follows:

  • LIS 500-LIS Orientation (*1 credit hour required for students starting fall 2012 and after)
  • LIS 501-Reference and Information Sources 
  • LIS 505-Cataloging and Classification
  • LIS 511-Collection Development and Management
  • LIS 605-Library Management
  • LIS 636-Foundations of Librarianship
  • LIS 651-Fundamentals of Information Science
  • LIS 668-LIS Research Methods

Electives (15 credit hours) Electives provide the student an opportunity to pursue an area of emphasis and to build upon the foundation of the required courses. Students may select from more than 40 elective courses in library and information science, ranging from children's literature to computers to archives administration. One of the electives must be a technology course: LIS 516, 557, or 558.

LIS 695 Master's Project (3 credit hours) - Additionally, all students are required to complete a significant research project.

During the semester the master's project proposal is submitted students take a comprehensive exam. Successful completion of the project and the comprehensive exam are required to receive the master's degree.

Field Experience and practical work experience in a library or other information center significantly complements the intellectual and theoretical focus of traditional course work. Students are encouraged to include in the graduate curriculum a practicum or field experience at a library, archives, or information center.

Degree Track Requirements and Recommended Electives:  mlis_degree_tracks.pdf

MLIS Plan of Study: mlis_planofstudy.xls 


Students may earn a graduate certificate along with the MLIS or post MLIS. Twelve credit hours of LIS credit may count toward both MLIS and LIS certificate:

Graduate Certificate in Archives and Special Collections

Graduate Certificate in Youth Services and Literature

Students or graduates with MLIS may be interested in these graduate certificates that may be earned with or post MLIS degree:

Graduate Certificate in Business Foundations

Graduate Certificate in Instructional Technology