How Do You Get a Library Science Degree?


Quick Answer

Obtain a library science degree by enrolling in master's program at an American Library Association accredited educational program. In general, applicants for a program need a bachelor's degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0, acceptable GRE scores, letters of recommendation, computer skills and personal interviews. Most libraries with positions that require advanced degrees require ALA accreditation.

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Full Answer

Most academic programs complete in two years with full-time status. Some programs finish in one year. Many schools have online or distance learning opportunities, plus there are satellite schools on some campuses. Some courses occur at night for students with daytime jobs.

In general, programs prepare degree holders for careers in libraries and information science, including advanced positions at public, school and academic libraries. Specializations include art, business, legal and health librarianship. Library and information science degrees also prepare candidates for jobs as archivists and database designers.

As of October 2014, 58 institutions have ALA accreditation in the United States and Canada. Six universities have conditional status, meaning programs must meet certain conditions in order to comply with standards beyond a certain date. As the field of library science and librarianship changes, the ALA's Committee on Accreditation periodically updates educational standards to meet industry norms and trends.

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