Library Science Majors
Library and Information Science
Information science is an academic field which is primarily concerned with analysis, collection, classification, manipulation, storage, retrieval, movement, dissemination, and protection of information. (Wikipedia) This field also looks at the overall picture of information exchange and learn how people interact with, use, and sell information.
Common career paths for people with degrees in Library and Information Science include:
- Data curation expert
- Digital library manager
- Digital archivist
- Community outreach specialist
- Information literacy architect
- Museum archivist
- Information broker
- Business research specialist
Library and Information Science majors end up in Academic, K-12 and Public Schools, Public, Law and Special Libraries, Archives, Information Technology positions and other areas. Archival positions can be found at museums, government institutions, historical societies, and religious organizations and deal with management, protection and access to records and archives. Moving forward, the digitization of records might also be within this scope to a larger degree.
A Master’s degree is required to become a librarian, archivist or information specialist. However, roughly a dozen US colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degrees in library and information science. Degrees may be called any of the following: Library Science and Media, Information and Library Science, Library Informatics, Information and Library Services, Information Science, Information Studies and Education and Library Science.
However, there might be better undergraduate degrees to go with your MLIS degree, depending upon the organization in which you might ultimately want to end up. For instance, if you wish to become an archivist, a History degree might well serve you, whereas Political Science might best prepare you to work in a Law library. English or communications, as well as Computer Science or Information Technology are also good areas which suit the skills required in most Library and Information Science positions.
IS Career Resources
- American Library Association - American Library Association is the oldest and largest professional organization for librarians in the world.
- Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) - The Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) is the only professional association that bridges the gap between information science practice and research. For over 75 years, ASIS&T has been leading the search for new and better theories, techniques, and technologies to improve access to information.
- International Society for Knowledge Organization - The International Society for Knowledge Organization, or ISKO, is a professional association for scholars of knowledge organization, knowledge structures, classification studies, and information organization and structure.
- Special Libraries Association - Special Libraries Association is an international professional association for library and information professionals working in business, government, law, finance, non-profit, and academic organizations and institutions.
Majors and Concentrations
Most librarian positions require a master's degree. Library professionals with a bachelor's degree can pursue careers as library aides, technicians, and assistants. (See Overview Education section for more detail on program options).
Library Science programs offer courses in:
- Library Science and Media
- Information and Library Science
- Library Informatics
- Information and Library Services
- Information Science
- Information Studies
- Education and Library Science
Other professional development:
Specialized skills, leadership training, and teaching licenses lead to additional career opportunities for library science majors.
Jobs and Experiences
Who hires people with degrees in Library and Information Science?
Most positions fall under interpersonal interaction, digital services and administration, and are available in schools, communities and professional/government agencies.
The largest employer for these grads is elementary and secondary schools, but education in general (including higher education institutions) plays a large role. Positions can also be found in medical and surgical hospitals, archives, museums, art galleries and similar organizations.
Library Science and Administration
Library and Archives Assisting
Library and Information Science
Children and Youth Library Services
K-12 School Librarian
Data curation expert
Digital library manager
Community outreach specialist
Information literacy architect
Business research specialist