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Program Bulletin

Accredited by

Fall 2012

Member of

vision, mission, goals and instructional objectives

Classes in library science were first offered at the University of Kentucky in 1918. During its formative years, the program emphasized school librarianship. However, by the mid 1950’s the program had expanded to include all aspects of library science. In 1982 the name was changed to the School of Library and Information Science in recognition of the expanding scope of the School’s teaching and research programs. The School awards a master’s degree in library and information science and an undergraduate minor in information studies. The master’s in library and information science is one of approximately 60 educational programs in the United States currently accredited by the American Library Association. It is the only such program located in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The School is a member of the Association for Library and Information Science Education.

Goals 1. To provide a strong and flexible educational program that is responsive to the immediate and long-range needs of students, the profession, and those the profession serves. 2. To attract and admit a diverse, talented and promising student body. 3. To provide an educational environment that fosters effective teaching and learning. 4. To produce competent information professionals who can facilitate the flow of information in a rapidly changing society. 5. To contribute to the advancement of theory and practice through systematic and continuing research and publication.

Vision The School of Library and Information Science will be one of the nation's 20 best Schools for information professionals, excelling in teaching, scholarship, and professional service.

Mission The mission of the School of Library and Information Science is: through teaching, to prepare men and women for an ever-expanding array of careers in the information field; through scholarship, to contribute to society's fund of information and knowledge of ways to store, retrieve, and use that information; through professional service, to assist in the transfer of the discoveries of research to the improvement of lives.

6. To expand research and development in library and information science for faculty and student scholarship. 7. To develop an infrastructure for collaborative research involving library and information science faculty, students, other UK departments and Schools and the professional community. 8. To increase visibility through faculty and student leadership in professional associations, conferences, networks, and consortia at the local, regional, national, and international levels. 9. To contribute to professional practice and the activities of professional organizations through continuing professional service. 10. To recruit, develop, support and retain a diverse, talented and promising faculty and staff.

11. To develop and maintain collaborative relationships with individuals and units within the College and University to further the mission of the School. 12. To develop and maintain a program of financial and other support that will supplement the financial support provided by the University in order to advance the School’s mission.

Program Learning Outcomes Students will: - examine and apply appropriate methods of information management, including information acquisition, storage, organization, description, and retrieval. - employ appropriate methods to match users to needed information through the identification, selection, evaluation and dissemination of information. - examine the roles of information agencies in curating and preserving the cultural record. - critically evaluate key philosophical concepts and principles of librarianship through an examination of the history and context of librarianship, and alternative theoretical perspectives. - examine ethical issues and describe how they should be applied to the practice of library and information science. - define their ethical responsibilities as information professionals both as individuals and as part of the collective. - examine major information policies and policy theories impacting the national and global information society. - identify and evaluate key issues that lie at the intersection of librarianship and information policy.

- apply instructional strategies in the provision of information services. - describe the role of professional associations in the field of library and information studies. - describe how professional service advances the field of library and information studies. - interpret and evaluate research. - apply research to the analysis of professional problems. - describe the symbiotic relationships library and information science shares with other disciplines. - identify the characteristics of diverse and underserved populations within the United States. - examine and evaluate programs for diverse and underserved populations within different information organizations. - examine and evaluate information resources that can support diverse and under-served populations within different information organizations. - examine and assess various information technologies and describe how they can be used to meet system and user needs. - experiment with appropriate technologies and tools to be prepared to implement them in a variety of information environments. - identify methods for assessing the needs of the constituencies served by an information organization. - describe methods for integrating needs assessment data into strategic planning. - examine management concepts and identify best leadership practices as they relate to the management of information organizations. - communicate effectively in writing.


Student Awards Students of the School are eligible for a number of special awards, including membership in Beta Phi Mu, the international honor society for library and information science graduates; the Melody Trosper Award, given by the School to a student chosen by the faculty in recognition of excellence in scholarship, leadership, and service; and the LISSO Leadership Award, given by LISSO, the Library and Emily Aldridge and Julie Information Science Student VanHoose Organization, to a student chosen by the students in recognition of a leadership contribution to the student body. Awards are presented at the annual banquet, which is held each year at the end of the spring semester.

Student Organizations All students enrolled in the School are members of LISSO, the Library and Information Science Student Organization, which serves as the students’ voice in educational matters and fosters fellowship among the students. The President of LISSO is a member of the School Council. In addition to LISSO, there are student chapters of American Library Association (ALA), Special Libraries Association (SLA), and American Society for Information, Science and Technology (ASIST).

Placement Job announcements are regularly posted on our program listserv. Student groups schedule an annual resume review/interview workshop with local managers and employers. Additionally, the School’s Lunch & Learn sessions regularly bring various professionals on campus to talk about what kinds of skills they require for their particular information agency. In addition, students and graduates of the School may use the services at the University Career Center.

Online Instruction The School offers enough of its courses via online instruction that a student can complete the degree solely through online instruction. This is a direct result of increased interest in online courses as well as a general shift to online instruction throughout higher education. Online courses do not have any required campus visits. According to Distance Learning Programs at UK, those students who opt for solely online instruction will be charged the much lower resident (as opposed to non-resident) tuition rate.

For Individual Needs Degree requirements allow a student considerable freedom to design her/his program to suit individual needs and interests. The curriculum is sufficiently varied to permit opportunities to build both breadth and depth into the course of study. The student is assisted in this endeavor by a faculty advisor who provides guidance and counsel. Advisor assignment is based, when possible, on student interests and preferences.


Development Opportunities Students in the UK School of Library & Information Science have excellent development opportunities - two of which include alternative spring break programs in conjunction with the Library of Congress and the National Library of Medicine. Our School’s Lunch & Learn series regularly bring various professionals Alternative Spring Break Participants from a wide variety of library and information agencies to campus to talk to students. Our course, LIS 675 Professional Field Experience, allows students the opportunity to gain real world experience while also earning course credit.

Alumni There are over 4000 graduates of the School, many of whom hold major positions in libraries and other information agencies throughout the United States. The School publishes an electronic newsletter semiannually for alumni and other interested parties for the purpose of maintaining communication between the School and its graduates. We also stay in touch with our graduates through a School listserv, Twitter and Facebook. The Alumni Association supports the School in a number of ways and annually presents the Outstanding Alumna/us Award.


School administrative and faculty offices, five smart classrooms and The McConnell Center for the Study of Youth Literature are located on the third floor of Lucille Little Fine Arts Library (LCLI). The McConnell Center for the Study of Children’s Literature is a joint project of the School and the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives. It provides an examination and research collection of recent children’s and young adult literature, reference materials, criticism and reviews; and it serves as a resource in book selection for university students, authors and others in developing an appreciation and understanding of the creation, use, teaching, and criticism of children’s literature. The University library system, whose flagship is the William T. Young main library, constitutes a major laboratory for School students. University libraries are supplemented by other libraries in the area, including Transylvania University Library, Lexington Public Library, Lexington Theological Seminary Library, the Veteran’s Administration Medical Center Library, the State Department for Libraries and Archives in Frankfort, along with academic and public libraries in nearby communities. They provide opportunities for professional field experience placements and for part-time employment.

education program

Master’s Program The School conforms to the University of Kentucky Graduate School in offering three forms of the master’s degree: the Master of Science in Library Science (MSLS) and the Master of Arts (MA), plans A and B. Most students elect the MSLS degree. Students who are interested in pursuing original research, or who plan on continuing in a PhD program might select the MA program. Stated broadly, the educational goal of the School is to prepare students for careers as information professionals in all types of libraries and the rapidly growing information industry. All students enrolled in the master’s program must include the four required courses and a qualifying technology course in their program of study. Beyond these courses, a student, with the assistance of her/his advisor, can select electives to develop a program of study that is tailored to the student’s professional interests and career goals.

General Program Requirements In addition to the specific degree requirements below, students must complete a minimum of 18 hours of courses numbered 600 or above, at least 15 hours of which must be University of Kentucky library and information science courses.

Degree Requirements To successfully complete either the MSLS or MA program, a student must complete four required courses and one qualifying technology course. The required core courses are LIS 600 Information in Society, LIS 601 Information Seeking, Retrieval and Services, LIS

602 Information Representation and Access, and LIS 603 Management in Library and Information Science. Qualifying technology courses are LIS 636 Foundations of Information Technology, LIS 637 Information Technology, LIS 638 Internet Technologies and Information Services, and LIS 668 Information Systems Design. Beginning fall 2011, students must either complete a program portfolio or a thesis to satisfy University requirements. The Master's in Science in Library Science (MSLS) requires successful completion of 36 hours (21 hours of electives along with required courses described previously) and a program portfolio. With the faculty advisor's prior approval, as many as 6 elective hours may be taken in a cognate area of study. The Master's of Arts in Library Science (MA) requires 42 hours (12 hours in Dean Birdwhistell required courses plus 3 hours qualifying technology course as described previously, 6 hours in a cognate area, 21 hours of additional coursework) and successful completion of a thesis (plan A) or program portfolio (plan B). MA students can select their additional coursework to develop a specialization such as information technology or medical informatics. In the Plan B (non-thesis option), students must take six hours in advanced coursework. In the design of the core courses, emphasis has been given to both the conceptual foundations of library and information science and to the acquisition of professional knowledge and skills that will provide students with a common foundation upon which to build their personalized programs of study. Other courses in the curriculum assume, and build upon, the foundation that is established by the

education program

four required courses. For this reason, students are urged and expected to take the required courses in their first 18-24 hours.

Cognate Courses After admission into the program and with prior approval of the advisor, students may take as many as 6 credit hours of graduate courses outside the program in library and information science and have the courses apply to degree requirements. Used wisely, the cognate course option should enhance a student’s program of study. The cognate course option is neither a vehicle to permit a student to receive credit toward master’s program requirements for courses taken prior to enrolling in the master’s program nor a means to permit a student to take courses at another institution solely for reasons of convenience.

While in the PhD program, students with an “Information Studies focus” may continue to work with School of Library and Information Science faculty and research projects, along with those in other units of the College. Like many doctoral programs, it often takes four or five years to complete the degree and dissertation.

Program Portfolio Candidates for the MSLS must produce a satisfactory program portfolio which is used to evaluate the candidate’s ability to discuss significant aspects of library and information science in an integrated and coherent manner. A student who has an I grade or who is on academic probation is not permitted to submit a portfolio. A final evaluation is required of all master's students at the University of Kentucky. Ultimately, it is the student’s responsibility to see that all School and Graduate School requirements are met prior to submitting a program portfolio.

Doctoral Study Opportunities Opportunities exist for doctoral study at UK College of Communications and Information Studies following the MSLS degree program. The College of Communications and Information Studies offers a PhD program in Communication, in which students enrolled in the School may take courses while completing the MSLS degree. Admission to the PhD program is a separate process, normally initiated after completing at least 12 hours in the master’s program. Once admitted to PhD studies, students may undertake interdisciplinary studies related to information transfer, drawing on the faculties and other resources of Library and Information Science, Communication, and Journalism and Telecommunications.

Transfer Of Credits Under certain circumstances and with the approval of the student’s advisor and of the School’s Director of Graduate Studies, transfer credit may be given for courses taken elsewhere and applied to the 36 credit hour requirement of the master’s program. Also, any of the School’s courses taken while in post-baccalaureate status must be treated as transfer credit in order to be applied to degree requirements. The limit on transfer credit is 9 hours. Thirty of the 36 semester hours required for the master’s degree must be in library and information science. Graduate credits that may be considered for transfer include any combination of the following, to a maximum of 9 credit hours:

education program

• • •

courses in the School’s program taken while in postbaccalaureate status courses in library and information science taken at another ALA accredited program courses with the prior approval of the advisor taken as part of the MSLS program

Graduate transfer credit may not be used to meet the cognate subject minor requirement for the School’s MA degree option. Graduate transfer credit is not automatic, but is granted only when educational justification exists. Graduate transfer credit must meet the conditions specified above, have been earned while the student was enrolled in an accredited graduate school, and must have been graded B or better. No credit may be given for graduate work completed more than six years prior to the end of the semester in which the student completes the program of the School. Moreover, The Graduate School Bulletin states: “In no case will independent work, research, thesis or dissertation credit completed as part of the degree requirements for one program be considered to satisfy requirements of a subsequent master’s or specialist program.” Requests for graduate transfer credit are made by petition on the part of the student, after s/he has been admitted and has begun taking classes in the School of Library and Information Science. If the student’s faculty advisor and the School’s Director of Graduate Studies believe that transfer credit is appropriate, recommendation is made to the Graduate School that it be awarded. However, final decision about awarding transfer credit rests with the Graduate School.

School Media Librarianship Students who possess a valid teaching license can also pursue school library certification while working on their master's in library and

information science. With careful course selection, certification can be completed in the 36 hours required for the master's degree. Students from outside Kentucky should apply for a Kentucky teaching certificate (or letter of eligibility to teach) when they are admitted to the program. This is required prior to starting the school library practicum. Once the program is completed, students will submit their Kentucky endorsement to their home state for local certification.

Required GPA; C Grades While enrolled in the program, students must adhere to rules and regulation from both the School of Library & Information Science and the University Graduate School. A grade point average of 3.00 (B) must be maintained. Failure to do so results in academic probation and will result in dismissal, if, in the prescribed time, the grade point average is not raised to 3.00 or higher. A student who earns a third C (or lower) grade is dismissed from the program, even though the student may have earned the required minimum 3.00 grade point average. Students who are on probation are not eligible to submit the program portfolio or to graduate.

I (Incomplete) Grades For graduate students, any I (incomplete) grade must be replaced by a regular final letter grade within 12 months of the end of the semester or term in which the I grade was assigned, or prior to the student’s graduation, whichever occurs first. If at that time the I grade has not been changed to some other regular final letter grade, it will be changed to a grade of E.

applying to the program

Application Our program receives more applications than we can accept. We urge prospective students to apply early as they will be evaluated once their application is complete. In order to apply to the master’s program, separate applications must be made to the School of Library and Information Science and to the Graduate School.

Application Items Application to the School of Library and Information Science requires the application, personal statement, transcripts and three recommendations, all of which must be received by the application deadline. The application should be submitted electronically and the recommendation forms can be downloaded. Application to the Graduate School requires completion of a separate application. It is to be submitted to the Graduate School, along with the required application fee and other required documents. An application is not acted upon until it is complete, including transcripts and Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. The applicant must have the registrar at each college or university attended send 1 official transcript to The Graduate School, University of Kentucky, 106 Gillis Building, Lexington, KY 40506-0033. The applicant should also send 1 copy of all transcripts to the School of Library and Information Science, 320 Lucille Little Fine Arts Library, Lexington, KY 40506-0224. All applicants except those with an earned doctorate must submit GRE scores. We do not accept other exams in place of GRE scores. For this purpose the UK Graduate School does not consider a JD an earned doctorate.

Notification When an application is completed with the Graduate School, the School of Library and Information Science is asked to recommend that the applicant be admitted or denied admission. If admission is recommended, the Graduate School notifies the applicant. If admission is not recommended, the School notifies the applicant, who is told why admission was not recommended. If admission is recommended, the School contacts the applicant with further information regarding setting up UK computing accounts, course registration, etc.

Application Deadlines Deadlines for domestic applications are July 1 for fall, November 15 for spring and March 15 for summer. All supporting materials (including transcripts and GRE scores) must be received by the deadline and not merely postmarked. For fall admission the application deadline is January 15 in order to be considered for a Graduate School Multi-Year Fellowship and March 1 in order to be considered for a Graduate Assistantship or Internship.

International Applicants Applicants for whom English is not the native language must meet the Graduate School's required scores for the TOEFL exam. Although the School uses the same application form for US citizens and for international applicants, the Graduate School has a different form for international applicants. The Graduate School sets earlier deadlines for international applicants. The dates and other useful information

applying to the program

are available at the International Applicant Menu, at

Admission High enrollment and a continuing large number of applications make it impossible for the School to admit all who meet the admission criteria. The School’s budget and number of faculty limit enrollment. Therefore meeting the GPA and GRE criteria (see below) does not guarantee admission. Admission decisions are competitive, based on analysis of a variety of relevant factors regarding the applicant and enrollment in the master’s program, which determines the number of applicants who can be admitted. The goal of the admission criteria is to enable the School to estimate the applicant’s potential as a graduate student and information professional. Three primary factors are considered in deciding whether to admit an applicant to the School: • •

a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or higher, and a grade point average of 3.0 or higher on any prior graduate work, in both cases on a scale with A = 4.0 Graduate Record Examination scores of 450 or higher on the verbal section and of 400 or higher on the quantitative section or a 4.0 (or 400) or higher on the analytical section; Scoring for the GRE general exam will change during fall 2011. It is not known at this time what scores on the new exam will be comparable to our existing requirements.

Other factors considered in the admission decision include personal references, work experience, academic background, other graduate work, progressive academic improvement, and the cultural and geographic origin of the applicant. School faculty expect all students

to have certain computer competencies before entering the program, including using popular computer operating systems, word processing software, spreadsheet applications, and web based communications such as email, video conferencing and instant messaging software.

Conditional Admission The Graduate School Bulletin states that a person who is “temporarily ineligible for regular graduate admission status may be recommended by the Director of Graduate Studies [in the program in which the person wishes to take courses] for conditional admission.” However, the School of Library and Information Science rarely recommends conditional admission, preferring to award openings to those who present a completed application and meet the admission criteria. Requests for consideration for conditional admission must be in writing to the School’s Director of Graduate Studies. If the Admissions Committee recommends conditional admission, the conditions that must be satisfied for regular admission will be conveyed in writing to the applicant. Provisional status is limited to 12 hours.

funding your degree

Funding Your Education Fellowships, Scholarships, Assistantships, and Internships are available on a competitive basis. Multi-Year Fellowships require no service. Their purpose is to attract outstanding first-year graduate students, and thus they are not available to those already enrolled in the graduate program. They are open only to individuals nominated by their UK graduate programs who meet GPA and GRE requirements established by the Graduate School; they are not open to off-campus students. Because of the schedule the Graduate School sets for these awards, it is essential that an application for admission be received by January 15. The School will nominate only those who, in the School’s judgment and experience, are strong candidates. Lyman T. Johnson Fellowships are available from the Graduate School to increase the number of underrepresented graduate students and first generation students. The Fellowships match an award the student receives through the academic program. Graduate Assistantships require the student to provide service, generally 15-20 hours per week. Most Assistantships are awarded to begin the fall semester. The application deadline is March 1. The application form for a Graduate Assistantship can be downloaded from our web site. For information about other fellowships and scholarships, visit the Graduate School web site at Scholarships from the School are also available. Scholarships include the Helen E Fry, Vivian J MacQuown, SLIS Alumni Endowed Fund, Hallie Day Blackburn and Williena Burdine Broyles Memorial Scholarships. For more information on SLIS scholarships, go to

The Kentucky Library Association has offered the Kentucky Library Association Scholarship for Minority Students the past several years. More information about that scholarship can be found at Other groups that may offer funding for library students include the American Library Association, the Medical Library Association, and the Special Libraries Association. All applicants and students are encouraged to apply for Federal financial aid by submitting their FAFSA.

Academic Common Market The Academic Common Market enables a resident of Arkansas, Delaware, Virginia, or West Virginia to enroll in the School’s master’s program and pay in-state tuition. Information is available from: Arkansas: Academic Common Market Coordinator Arkansas Department of Higher Education Delaware: Academic Common Market Coordinator Delaware Higher Education Commission Virginia: Academic Common Market Coordinator Virginia State Council on Higher Education West Virginia: West Virginia State College and University Systems Information about the ACM is available at

undergraduate program

Undergraduate Minor Beginning Spring 2013, the School of Library and Information Science is offering a new undergraduate minor in Information Studies. The minor, which can be completed entirely online, is an excellent complement to any major program. During the 18 hours, the student will learn how to effectively navigate, manage and analyze information. For more information, see our website –

Fall 2012 Program Bulletin  

Program bulletin for UK's School of Library and Information Science.