Library and Information Science

This is the first version of the 2024–25 General Catalog. Please check back regularly for changes. The final edition and the historical PDF will be published during the fall semester.

Graduate degree: MA in library and information science

Graduate certificate: special collections librarianship



The School of Library and Information Science offers a graduate-level program of professional and academic preparation for careers in libraries and information centers. The program is accredited by the American Library Association. In concert with the mission of the University of Iowa, the school seeks excellence in its education of future library and information professionals, its contribution to the knowledge base of library and information science, and its service to the school's local, regional, national, and international constituencies.

Library and information professionals serve the needs of their own constituencies—children and teachers, members of academic communities, employees of profit and nonprofit organizations, and the public at large—ranging from information poor to information rich. They work in the contexts of issues such as information and communication technology, public and private information policy, managerial policy, and regional, national, and international economics.

The school offers the MA in Library and Information Science and a variety of dual degrees and certificates to specialize in different areas of librarianship, including joint offerings with the Center for the Book, the College of Law, the Department of English, and a school teacher-librarian endorsement for licensed K–12 teachers. The MA may be pursued while completing other degrees at the University of Iowa, including other master's and PhD degrees. Undergraduates at the University of Iowa may also apply for the Undergraduate to Graduate (U2G) degree program and complete their bachelor's degree in combination with the MA in Library and Information Science.

Student Organizations and Activities

All MA students in the school are automatically members of LISSO, the Library and Information Science Student Organization, which also serves as the student chapter of the American Library Association. LISSO sponsors various activities, such as speaker series, workshops, brown bag lunches, and social events. Participation in LISSO events provides students with significant opportunities for professional and extracurricular growth as well as completion of capstone portfolio requirements. Students are encouraged to join other state and national professional organizations.

Honor Society

The Beta Beta Theta Chapter of Beta Phi Mu, the international honor society for library and information science, is located at the University of Iowa. Each year new members are chosen from the top 25% of the preceding year's graduating class. To be eligible for membership, graduates must achieve a grade-point average of at least 3.75, demonstrate professional promise, and be recommended by the faculty.

Related Certificate

Certificate in Book Studies/Book Arts and Technologies

Students may apply to earn the Certificate in Book Studies/Book Arts and Technologies. The program requires 15 additional s.h. of graduate credit through the University of Iowa Center for the Book for students who are enrolled in the joint Library and Information Sciences MA/Certificate in Book Studies/Book Arts and Technologies program. For more information, see the MA and Certificate in Book Studies in the catalog.