Overview of Library Science Courses and Classes

Essential Information

Library science programs prepare students to organize and catalog library materials, create and maintain information databases and assist library patrons. These programs may be offered in both on-campus and online formats. Librarians typically need a master's degree, and aspiring librarians in some states may also need to pass a standardized Library Media Specialist test and/or hold teaching certification if they work in public schools.

Here is an outline of common concepts taught in library science courses:

  • Organization of information
  • Collection/retrieval
  • Information-related behavior
  • Research methods
  • Management for information professionals

List of Common Courses

Research Methods for Library and Information Professionals Course

Participants learn the methodology and standards used in library and information science research. They discuss techniques for assisting information users with research questions. Additional materials covered include information science research project design, elementary statistics and information evaluation. Class assignments include writing research proposals.

Organization of Materials and Information Course

Instructors offer an overview of the standards, practical considerations and theoretical frameworks used to organize information. Course materials consider information storage, retrieval, transmission and archiving. Discussions examine the subject catalog, access and description systems.

Resource Selection and Evaluation Course

This class reviews the theoretical and practical framework used in evaluating and selecting information resources. Assignments present methods for identifying client needs and providing appropriate materials. Additional topics include material selection processes for public and private research institutions, schools and community centers.

Human Information Interactions Course

Instructors offer insights into the cognitive and behavioral processes involved when a person uses information. Course materials emphasize information mediators and their role in human/information interactions. Additional topics include the dissemination and use of information, recognizing information needs and resolving conflicts in human/information interactions.

Instructional and Training Strategies for Information Professionals Course

The course examines strategies and methods used in designing information literacy programs. Assignments focus on evaluating, designing and developing programs that instruct users in accessing and using information. Other topics include teaching and learning strategies, assessing user needs and modifying instructional delivery systems.

Management for Information Professionals Course

Students discuss leadership and management skills needed by information professionals. They consider practices and problems affecting the management of information organizations. Discussions include planning and budgeting tools, personnel hiring and organizational structures. Other topics include politics and policy, marketing and external funding.

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