What Types of Librarian Degrees Are Available?
If you love to organize things, conduct research and help people learn, you may like a career as a librarian. Most jobs for librarians require Master of Library Science (MLS) or higher-level degrees. Read on to learn more about your degree options. Schools offering Library Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Librarian Degree Options
Your degree options to become a librarian will depend on where you want to work and what you've established as your career goals. Most employers typically require that you earn a master's degree or higher in library science or information science. Some states don't require a master's in library science, if you wish to work as a school librarian in K-12 schools; however, it is likely that you'll still need to pass additional educational licensing requirements or complete a related master's degree. These requirements will differ depending on your state of residence. You might also be interested in pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Library Science or a Ph.D. in Information Science if you enjoy research and theory of information.
Master's degrees in the library sciences are appropriate for almost all types of librarians, including community librarians, research librarians and technical service librarians. These programs typically last 1-2 years and include an internship in a professional library. Several programs offer you the option to specialize or concentrate on a particular area of librarianship, such as curating or archiving. The name of the degree awarded to you depends on the institution you attend; programs you may come across include the following:
- Master of Science in Library Science (MSLS)
- Master of Library Science (MLS)
- Master of Arts in Library and Information Science (MALIS)
- Master of Information Science (MIS)
If your interests lie in information science research, library administration or advanced college-level teaching, they you might want to consider earning a Ph.D. in Library Science. The length of these programs varies, depending on the time it takes for you to write and defend a dissertation. It is possible to spend 5-6 years completing your doctoral degree. Most of these programs will encourage you to publish research, teach undergraduate students and take advanced-level courses in your focus of research.
To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below: