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Library and Information Studies MA

The Library and Information Studies MA provides the ideal foundation for career progression in library or information work. The one-year programme is accredited by the professional association, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP), and offers students a wide range of up-to-date learning opportunities while helping to develop strong networks designed to enhance their employability.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2018

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year
Part time: 2 years
Flexible: up to 5 years

Tuition fees (2018/19)

UK/EU:
£9,570 (FT) £4,785 (PT)
Overseas:
£20,600 (FT) £10,410 (PT)

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 16 October 2017
Close: 27 July 2018

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.

Optional qualifications: This degree is also available as a PG Diploma with fees set accordingly.
Accreditation:

The Library and Information Studies MA/PG Diploma has been accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) as professional level qualifications for a period of five years from the 2014 student cohort intake.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Normally a substantial amount (usually equivalent to about a year) of full-time employment or its equivalent in a recognised library or information service.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

The programme prepares students for professional practice in the field of library and information studies. It strengthens traditional principles with cutting-edge approaches and helps students understand how information is produced, disseminated, controlled and recorded. It provides students with the practical skills required to identify, locate, manage and organise information.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of six core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma, six core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits), full-time nine months or flexible study 2-5 years, is offered.

Core modules

  • Cataloguing and Classification
  • Managing Collections
  • Supporting Information Users
  • Managing Information Organisations
  • Using Technology in Information Organisations
  • The Library and Information Professional

Optional modules

  • Students choose two of the following:
  • Academic and Journals Publishing
  • Collections Care
  • Database Systems Analysis and Design
  • Digital Resources in the Humanities
  • Electronic Publishing
  • Historical Bibliography
  • Information Literacy
  • Information Governance
  • Individual Approved Study
  • Knowledge Representation and Semantic Technologies
  • Manuscript Studies
  • Organizing Knowledge
  • Web Publishing

Dissertation/report

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–12,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, computer laboratory and classroom practicals, with a strong emphasis on active learning and the acquisition of practical skills. Assessment is through a mixture of essays, reports, examination and practical assignments such as website design and the creation of indexing tools.

Placement

The work placement is open to full-time (compulsory) and part-time (optional) students and forms part of G030, The Library and Information Professional module. The work placement gives students experience of how the techniques they have learned may be applied in practice. Placements last for two weeks, and are undertaken at the beginning of the third term. We arrange placements individually for each student and do our best to match the placement with their interests and experience.


Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Library and Information Studies MA

Funding

The Worshipful Company of Stationers and Newspaper Makers offers a scholarship (fees) for a full-time Library and Information Studies MA student under the age of 25 years.

Scottish applicants may be eligible for an award from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

The programme aims to be broad-based: we are not trying to produce graduates who can work in only one kind of library or information service. The skills and competences we aim to develop are intended to apply in a wide range of different sectors.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Librarian, National Library of Singapore
  • Library Assistant, University of Oxford
  • Intranet Content Co-ordinator, Baker Tilly
  • Library Assistant, The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple
  • News Reference Specialist, British Library

Employability

As a vocational Master's, this programme prepares students for employment in the library and information sector, and, in most cases, for promotion from their pre-library school role as a library assistant to a qualified librarian role, such as senior library assistant, assistant librarian, librarian and library manager. Students also choose careers in information provision, such as taxonomists and web designers. There are specialist employment agencies that place students in both short-term and permanent positions, so if students do not find their ideal post straight away, they usually find suitable employment while continuing to seek their ideal post.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL has been the home of professional library training and education since 1919. The current programme continues to attract an outstanding team of researchers, teachers, students, practitioners and information industry leaders. It combines an appreciation of the traditional library with the latest developments in internet and digital technologies to develop an understanding of the ever-evolving information environment.

Networking opportunities include a two-week work placement, regular journal club and speaker events, guest lectures by professionals and career seminars led by industry professionals. Additionally, in terms of expanding its international connections, the programme has been granted precandidacy status by the Committee on Accreditation of the American Library Association (ALA). Precandidacy status is an indication that the programme has voluntarily committed to participate in the ALA accreditation process and is actively seeking accreditation.

Students benefit from UCL's proximity to major libraries and repositories, including the British Library, UCL Special Collections and the Senate House Library of the University of London. 

Accreditation:

The Library and Information Studies MA/PG Diploma has been accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) as professional level qualifications for a period of five years from the 2014 student cohort intake.

Department: Information Studies

Student / staff numbers › 23 staff › 218 taught students › 26 research students
Staff/student numbers information correct as of 1 August 2017.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Information Studies
68% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.

What our students and staff say

Staff view

"It is a very exciting time in the library and information landscape. As a lecturer I particularly enjoy the engagement with students, who are bringing their own experience of the workplace into the classes. It's really important to develop opportunities for students to share with their peers because that helps learning happen."

Charles Inskip

Library and Information Studies
UCL Information Studies

Application and next steps

Applications

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Application fee: There is an application processing fee for this programme of £75 for online applications and £100 for paper applications. More details about the application fee can be found at www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

The MA is a broad-based programme, and the skills that graduates learn are intended to apply to a wide range of jobs within the field of library and information studies. The general framework of the programme allows plenty of scope for students to follow their particular subject interests.

Application deadlines

All applicants
27 July 2018

The initial deadline for applications is 12 January 2018. Applications received by 12 January 2018 will be considered for interview in the spring and the majority of the places on the programme will be filled following these interviews. Later applications (especially from overseas applicants) may be considered until 31 July in the year for which entry is sought, but at this stage fewer places are likely to be available.


For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Library and Information Studies at graduate level
  • why you want to study Library and Information Studies at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally and/or academically with your degree

Contact information

Page last modified on 16 November 2017 by UCL Student Recruitment Marketing

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