What Is Library and Information Science?
This degree can go by several different names, e.g., Library Media; Library Information and Media Studies.
Library and Information Science is usually a graduate program and it prepares students to work in libraries.
But this is about more than just books. Today, librarians are information experts. They are experts in many types of media and they have to keep up with information technology.
Sometimes these degree programs will have an educational focus and will prepare their students specifically to work in school libraries. Sometimes this focus will be reflected in the degree’s name, e.g., one might major in “School Library Media” or “Library Media Education.”
Note: Look for a degree that is accredited by the American Library Association.
Is Library and Information Science a Good Major / Degree for Me?
Are you an information junkie? Do you like to help people do research? Do you want to work in a calm and quiet environment? Are you an organized person? Do you love books? Do you like to work with information technology? Do you like to explore many forms of media? Then Library and Information Science may be for you!
High School Classes Needed for a Library and Information Science Degree:
- 4 English Credits
- 3 Math Credits
- 3 Science Credits
- 3 Social Studies Credits
- At least 2 Foreign Language Credits
Common Library and Information Science Courses in College:
- Academic Library Service
- Cataloging and Classification
- Collection Development
- Information Users and Services
- Library Media Methods
- Public Library Service
- Reference and Research
- Technology and Media
Similar Degree Programs You Might Want to Explore:
- Archives and Preservation: a course of study that prepares students to work as archivists in museums or other organizations
- Elementary Education: a course of study that prepares students to teach Kindergarten through 8th grade
- Film Studies: the study of film history, theory, criticism, and production
- History: the study of past events
- Historical Preservation: the study of how to restore and preserve historic buildings, landmarks, and areas
- Library and Archives Assisting: a course of study that prepares students to work in libraries as assistants to head librarians
- Middle School Education: a course of study that prepares an individual to teach 5th through 8th grade
- Museum Studies: a course of study that prepares students for careers as curators
Library and Information Science Careers:
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth for librarians is expected to grow more slowly than other jobs over the next several years. Yet it remains a popular major and there is often tough competition and/or a waiting list for acceptance to many programs. The BLS says though that a library degree can be used in other areas of employment, e.g., market research and computer and information systems.
Here are some sample job titles:
- Acquisitions Librarian
- Children’s Librarian
- College Librarian
- Computer and Information Systems Manager
- Database Administrator
- Information Consultant
- Market Researcher
- Public Librarian
- School Librarian
- School Media Coordinator
Note: If you want to work in a school library, contact your state’s education department and find out what courses you will need for certification.