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SLIM Master of Library Science

Master of Library Science

General Program Information

The Emporia State University School of Library and Information Management (SLIM) program brings the campus to where its students live, offering programs in Emporia and Overland Park, Kansas; Denver, Colorado; Salt Lake City, Utah; Portland, Oregon; Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Las Vegas, Nevada; Boise, Idaho; and Conway, Arkansas.


The SLIM MLS program is a 36-credit hour degree program fully accredited by the American Library Association; the School Library Media Licensure program is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. The individual systems for higher education in Colorado, Utah, and Oregon have invited SLIM to operate within their boundaries and have approved the MLS program offered within their states.

Program delivery designed for non-traditional students

Many students are drawn to SLIM because it offers a unique opportunity for non-traditional students. To meet the needs of its students, SLIM offers most of its MLS courses in a non-traditional format. All courses are facilitated online for the full semester, with the majority of courses meeting for two face-to-face weekend intensive sessions during the semester. The typical student is in class four to six weekends per semester. Some courses are entirely online, but the MLS program cannot be completed in a totally online format.

Of course, students may also work through the program on a full-time basis. Four semesters—about sixteen months—is the minimum amount of time allowed to complete the MLS degree.

Cohorts provide support

Students go through the MLS degree program as a cohort. This model provides a support system and a ready-made professional network upon graduation. Students take all of the required courses together and get to know each through projects that require teamwork and collaboration.

A solid theoretical base + current practical skills = Dynamic curriculum

The goal of the SLIM MLS program is to prepare creative problem solvers who will provide proactive client-centered services in information agencies. To meet this goal, the curriculum is designed to provide the following dynamic mix of courses:

  • Core theory courses provide the foundation from which students learn the skill sets necessary for the library and information management profession.
  • Tools courses provide instruction on how to catalog and classify information, retrieve and repackage information, diagnose information needs, plan and evaluate information services, and use print and electronic information sources.
  • Applications courses amplify and extend the themes identified in the theory courses and focus on information transfer, global information infrastructure, management, and technology.
  • Elective courses are devoted to current issues in the profession and a capstone experience provides an opportunity to synthesize the educational experience in preparation for entering the field.

SLIM faculty travel to the various campus sites to teach all of the required theory courses in the curriculum and at least half of all the courses offered at each site. SLIM hires qualified practitioners in each regional location to teach certain elective courses that match their areas of expertise. In this way, SLIM students receive a quality education experience grounded in theory and in touch with the latest and best practices in the field.

Since many of their classes involve working with practitioners in the field, SLIM students benefit from outstanding opportunities for professional networking. More than 3,300 alumni across the country and around the world make a great job search network.

General Curriculum

Required Core Courses (22 Hours)

LI801 Foundations of Library and Information Science (3 hours)

LI802 Information-Seeking Behavior and Reference Services (3 hours)

LI804 Organization of Information (3 hours)

LI805 Management in Information Organizations (3 hours)

LI810 Research in Library and Information Science (3 hours)

LI855 Collection Development (3 hours)

LI880 Capstone Course: Assessing the MLS Experience (1 hour)

Technology Requirement- select one:

LI815 Information Technology (3 hours)

LI843 Web Design and Development (3 hours)

LI844 Database Design (3 hours)

Or another approved technology course (3 hours)

Elective Course Credit Hours (14 Hours)

To complete their MLS degree, students are required to enroll in 14 elective credit hours from the SLIM MLS catalog. A 9 credit hour concentration would apply towards the 14 credit hours of electives.

Total Hours for MLS degree: 36

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Admission requirements

Learn about the admission requirements for our MLS program.


For more information about the program, please contact the director of the regional location in which you are interested.