By Jeff Murphy, March 1, 2023
WARRENSBURG, MO – Recognizing a program that will help individuals prepare for jobs in an information-rich industry, OnlineMastersDegrees.org (OMD) recently named the University of Central Missouri among colleges and universities that offer the Best Masters in Library Science (MLS) Online Programs for 2023.
In its recent online feature, OMD ranked UCM’s Master of Library Science #14 on its list of the top 40 institutions across the nation for pursuing the online MLS. In announcing its rankings, OMD noted that its goal is to help prospective students ensure they choose a master’s program that gives them the best chance to get ahead in their career.
UCM was notified of its MLS ranking in an email by Kim Day, OMD marketing and outreach administrator. She noted that the organization’s research team worked over the past few months to find institutions that provide graduate students with the best overall library science programs by looking at key factors such as tuition affordability, online component availability, student/faculty ratio, and the accessibility of student and career support services.
“As we enter another new year, it is as important as ever for prospective master’s students to know their top options for getting a high-quality and affordable graduate education. It is our privilege to help these students learn about the top-notch library science program from your school,” Day stated in her email to UCM.
Jenna Kammer, Ph.D., associate professor and MLS program coordinator, commented on making the OMD list of best programs, noting, “We are very proud of our online library science program and are thrilled that it is recognized with this ranking. We offer a great value for students and love to see the program recognized publicly and on par with other larger institutions.”
UCM was one of only two Missouri institutions of higher education recognized as having a Best Masters in Library Science Online Program. The overall list covers an area that extends across the United States, reaching as far west as Honolulu, Hawaii, and east to Boston, Massachusetts.
OMD notes that an online MLS gives students an understanding of the history and development of the field, builds awareness of new and emerging technologies, and offers curricula that help students develop proficiency in data management and information services, information classification, and both quantitative and qualitative research. Most programs blend theory-based learning with interactive experiences geared toward practical application. On its website, OMD states that most programs require students to complete a sequence of core courses with a cohort while building foundations in information science. Hands-on or specialized requirements also are required.
Offered exclusively online, UCM’s MLS incorporates a core curriculum of 24 credit hours designed to meet American Library Association (ALA) Core Competencies of Librarianship, plus students can also choose 12 hours of electives. The School Librarian concentration is available within this masters program, and is designed for graduate students who want to work at a school library.
In addition to qualities such as affordability and student support, Kammer added about UCM’s library science program, “We also feel that our student-centered approach to teaching and advising is one of our biggest strengths. Even though our program is online, our faculty really get to know our students and support them to reach their career goals as much as possible.”
She added, “Our library science program is AASL (American Association of School Librarians) recognized and CAEP (Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation) accredited. Our graduates are well-prepared to work in school libraries and with youth in information settings. In addition to our online MLS, we also offer an online EdS (Education Specialist) which is excellent for preparing librarians to work in educational settings and to teach library and information literacy skills.”
Individuals who want to know more about UCM’s Master of Science and Information Science can visit the program website or contact Kammer at email@example.com or 660-543-8879.