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Library and Information Science - M.L.I.S. PDFDownload to print

College of Communication and Information

School of Library and Information Science

314 University Library
Tel: 330-672-2782


The Master of Library and Information Science prepares students for professional positions in academic, public, special, school libraries, museums and other types of information agencies. Graduates with the M.L.I.S. degree can also find jobs in cultural organizations and companies of all sorts and sizes. Many M.L.I.S. graduates go on to positions in other areas of the information field besides libraries – in research, for example, or publishing, information management, competitive business intelligence and more. The American Library Association has granted continued accreditation to the Kent State M.L.I.S. program for over 50 years. An accredited M.L.I.S. is the basic requirement for professional employment in most libraries and information centers.

Students have the option to pursue the general M.L.I.S. degree or the M.L.I.S. degree with a concentration in K-12 School Library Media Licensure. Students pursuing the general M.L.I.S. have the option of focusing in one or more areas. The School of Library and Information Science provides advising to help students select appropriate courses for a variety of areas of study.  The M.L.I.S. degree with a concentration in K-12 School Library Media leads to the M.L.I.S. degree as well as the opportunity to apply for multi-age licensure in school library media*. Students are prepared to work in all types of libraries, including school libraries, and the curriculum includes library science and instructional technology courses within the College of Education, Health and Human Services. 

The degree program is available 100 percent online. 

Technology requirements: Appropriate technology and computer literacy skills are essential for each LIS course. In order to be successful in the program, all incoming students must meet the School of Library and Information Science computer competencies as well as its minimum computer hardware, software and internet access requirements before the first day of class. For details, students should consult the School's website.


A number of additional non-degree, degree and licensure options are offered:

  • The Dual Degree Master of Education (M.Ed.) and M.L.I.S. + K-12 School Library Media Licensure prepares graduates to work in all types of libraries, including school libraries, and confers initial teaching license.  The program leads to the M.Ed. and M.L.I.S. + multi-licensure in school library media, is offered in cooperation with the College of Education, Health, and Human Services, and includes professional educational requirements, as well as library science and instructional technology courses. 
  • The Dual Master of Library and Information Science (M.L.I.S.) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) is designed for managers of large libraries and information centers. Individuals in these positions need knowledge pertaining to planning, organizing, staffing, directing and controlling. Advanced education to obtain knowledge and learn skills related to these management functions enables students to take advantage of career opportunities in library settings and other information settings, both in the profit and nonprofit sectors. 
  • The School Library Media (non-degree) program is intended for students who already hold a teaching license and are interested in working in school libraries. Please see the non-degree program listing with other College of Communication and Information graduate programs in the University Catalog for more information. 


*For K-12 School Library Media Licensure 

Licensure Requirement (not required for graduation):
Candidates seeking Ohio licensure are required to pass specific assessments in order to apply for licensure. Students should consult their advisors for specific program requirements and refer to the See Ohio Department of Education-Educator Preparation website for more information on assessments specific to licensure type. Applicants interested in obtaining school library media licensure or certification outside the state of Ohio should refer to the requirements established by their state education agencies. 

Admission Requirements

Official transcript(s), three letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, writing sample, a current resume or curriculum vita and English language proficiency scores for international students. Additional requirements include a statement of exception (addressing circumstances and readiness for graduate education) and GRE scores if total GPA is below 3.0 in highest completed degree. In calculating the total GPA, all grades from all courses taken at relevant level (baccalaureate or master's) from all institutions are required. Prospective students should complete the application process no later than September 15 for spring admission, January 15 for summer admission and March 15 for fall admission. For further details on admission procedures and deadlines, prospective students should consult the school's web site. 

For more information about graduate admissions, please visit the Graduate Studies website.

Graduation Requirements

The Master of Library and Information Science degree requires a minimum of 37 hours.


Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

  1. Apply the field's foundational theories, principles, values, ethics and skills to everyday practice.
  2. Critique and synthesize research and identify appropriate research methodologies to solve problems in the field. 
  3. Analyze and engage in the changing cultural, educational and social roles and responsibilities of librarians/information professionals and the environments they work in within the global society. 
  4. Evaluate systems and technologies relevant to a particular information context.
  5. Identify needs and connect individuals and communities with information that engages and empowers them. 
Thesis/ Dissertation

Students must choose between a 3-hour culminating experience (LIS 60092, or LIS 60098, LIS 60198 or LIS 60792) or a 6-hour master's thesis (LIS 60199) to meet degree requirements. LIS 60792 Culminating Experience Practicum in K-12 Libraries is available only to students admitted to the M.L.I.S. degree with a concentration in K-12 School Library Media Licensure.


American Library Association