Master of Science in Library and Information Science (MSLIS)

ALA Accredited

The Master of Science in Library and Information Science program at Chicago State University is accredited by the American Library Association (ALA) Committee on Accreditation, with the status of initial accreditation. The next comprehensive review visit is scheduled for 2027.

Learn more about the Library and Information Science program at Chicago State University by reviewing our latest newsletter, The Informatico!; perusing bios of some community members; and/or reading this feature on CSU alumna K.C. Boyd, School Librarian of the Year! #CSUProud

Join us online for an information session!

Upcoming dates include:

June 11th 5:00-6:00 pm CDT

Zoom link for meetings is here.

You may also find this CSU LIS FAQ and/or this recording from a recent information session helpful. 

About the Program

The Chicago State University Library and Information Science Program prepares future librarians, archivists, and other information professionals to work in a variety of settings including schools, colleges and universities, public and state libraries, and other settings. The program offers courses in both the theoretical foundations and practical application of various subjects in Library and Information Science, which include the essential theories, research and foundations of library and information science, management and organization of library and information services, organization of information, information sources and media, information literacy, information services, information technology for Library and Information Services, plus other LIS-related topics.

The program offers a Master of Science degree in Library and Information Science with a specialization in the following areas:

  1. School libraries (initial licensure, advanced master’s degree/endorsement to become a School Library Information Specialist in the state of Illinois)
  2. Archives and Records Management
  3. Academic Libraries, and
  4. Public Libraries.

In addition to the master's degree, the program offers an endorsement-only option in the area of School Library Information Specialist to licensed teachers in Illinois and a post-baccalaureate certificate in archives and records management.

The program received approval from the Higher Learning Commission in 2013 to offer more than 50% of its program of study online. Currently, all of the MSLIS courses are offered online. [Note: Those pursuing school library specialization may still need to complete in-person and additional requirements.]

Library and Information Science Program Options:

  • Master of Science Degree in Library and Information Science with a specialization in school libraries, academic libraries, public libraries, or archives and records management (MSLIS)
  • Non-Degree Endorsement in School Information Specialist for Licensed Teachers
  • Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Archives and Records Management

The Master of Science degree in Library and Information Science (MSLIS) prepares professionals to design and manage library and information services in a variety of settings. The program is designed to reflect an urban focus with the specializations of students' choice. The student learning objectives for the Master of Science in Library and Information Science program are based on the American Library Association’s Standards for Accreditation of Master’s Programs in Library & Information Studies.


Students master the following objectives by end of their programs study: 

Manage Recordable information and knowledge

  • Describe the social, political, ethical, cultural, economic and legal aspects of information creation, access, and use.
  • Demonstrate the knowledge necessary to sustain the cycle of recordable information and knowledge in society.

Provide information and instructional services to address the diverse needs of users

  • Assess user information needs in order to determine what is needed to improve service for constituents.
  • Develop and implement information and instructional services to address specific needs.
  • Demonstrate leadership in the provision of information and instructional services.

Integrate and use current research to advance the LIS professions

  • Leverage the evolving body of knowledge from relevant fields to guide decisions and practices.
  • Conduct original research that advances the field’s knowledge base and candidate’s professional knowledge.

Employ information technologies to enhance services

  • Evaluate situations to determine the best technical solution.
  • Effectively utilize technology to add value to the field.
  • Assess how changing technologies impact the field.

Provide specialized LIS services

  • Demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to perform within his/her specific specialization.

MSLIS Curriculum

The MSLIS is based on 12 courses (~36 credit hours) of coursework plus a 1-credit portfolio.

Required Courses  - all specializations (15 credit hours)
  • LIS 5050: Foundations of the Information Professions
  • LIS 5060: Organization of Information
  • LIS 5070: Introduction to Reference Services
  • LIS 5080: Information Technology for Library and Information Agencies
  • LIS 5090: Research Methods in Library and Information Science

Directed Electives (18 credit hours)

Students will select one of the following specializations and complete the sequence of courses listed:

  • LIS 5300: The Academic Library
  • LIS 5390: Management and Organization of Libraries
  • LIS 5510: Database Design for Information Storage & Retrieval
  • LIS 5970: Field Practicum
  • Two electives selected with an advisor
  • More information
  • LIS 5200: Archives and Records Administration
  • LIS 5970 Field Practicum
  • Four electives selected with an advisor (2 may be taken outside of the department)
  • More information
  • LIS 5350: The Public Library
  • LIS 5390: Management and Organization of Libraries
  • LIS 5510: Database Design for Information Storage & Retrieval
  • LIS 5970: Field Practicum
  • Two electives selected with an advisor
  • More information
  • LIS 5710: Literature and Services for Children
  • LIS 5720: Literature and Services for Young Adults
  • LIS 5520: Cataloging and Classification
  • LIS 5120: Administration of Media Centers
  • LIS 5130: Curriculum in the Media Center
  • LIS 5180: Clinical Experiences in School Library Media Centers
  • LIS 5185: Certification Exam Review
  • LIS 5190: Student Teaching and Seminar plus Professional Education Coursework Sequence (approx. 18 credit hours additional courses required) for candidates without an Illinois Professional Educator License (PEL)
  • More Information
  • LIS 5980 Project (3 credit hours)
  • LIS 5990 MSLIS Capstone (1 credit hour portfolio)

LIS students work with their academic advisor to develop cohesive programs of study. Some course substitutions are permissable with instructor and/or advisor persmission.

How to Apply To CSU's LIS Program


A complete application includes:

  1. Completion of the online application
  2. Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended
  3. Payment of the application fee
  4. Resume
  5. Personal goals essay (a one to three page essay describing how attaining this degree will help you reach your professional goals)

For more information about admissions, please contact Ms. Gloria Adams at or (773)995-2404.

More Information

Financial Aid Scholarships Tuition & Fees

Financial Aid is available

Tel: (773) 995-2304

Toll Free: 877-278-8898


Office of Student Financial Aid
ADM 207

CSU scholarships

General scholarships for LIS

The Bursar Office

Bursar Tel: (773) 995-2470

Cashier Tel: (773) 995-2029


ADM - Room 212 
More information

For more info:

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Program Assessment - Student Learning, Placement, and Retention Information (2023):

Average time to degree: 2.4 years

Placement within 12 months of graduation:

  • 88% LIS employment
  • Retention Rate: 90%

Career Resources: