Master of Library Science

The MLS focuses on the evaluation, preservation, collection, organization, and access to documents and data (‘information’), and it has a strong social and cultural service and values mandate, as per its American Library Association accreditation. The history of information institutions and record keeping goes back thousands of years in both the western and eastern traditions. Without reliable documents and data and their transmission, civilizations cannot come into being and continue to exist and organized peoples cannot survive and flourish; increasingly this also means that all life on earth cannot continue to exist, as well.

As a librarian or other information professional, you will be part of a tradition of service to knowledge and to life. You will enter a service profession that proudly maintains, transmits, and gives access to true information for the purpose of cultural, social, and scientific knowledge. Without your profession and work security, trust, tradition, and knowledge advancement are severely compromised.

The MLS program has a strong digital focus, but also strong core coverage and specializations in traditional documentary forms, such as rare books, manuscripts, and archives. The program reaches into the past and toward the future by means of social and cultural values and technical advances. It spans cultural documentation and scientific data. The faculty come from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds that contribute in their research and teaching to this focus.

The Skills to Navigate Information

The M.L.S. requirements and our faculty will help you develop the organizational and technical skills to evaluate, preserve, collect, organize, and give access to information. You can choose electives that fit your goals. You will intern for potential employers, such as the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian, as well as more local institutions. Almost all our MLS students work in library and documentary institutions on campus while they attend classes, such as the world-famous Lilly Library, the Kinsey Institute, the Mather Museum of World Cultures, and the many libraries within one of the largest and best academic library systems in the nation and the world, and one of the best public libraries. And you can also take specializations and dual degrees in order to explore complementary interests and increase your marketability.

The M.L.S. specializations include: