Frequently Asked Questions - Prospective Students

Do you require any particular BA or undergraduate course of study for admission?

We do not require a BA in any particular discipline. SLIS students enter the program with a wide variety of course work and experience. We do encourage application from prospective students who appreciate the rapidly changing nature of the profession. Therefore, we look for students who have some knowledge of or interest in technology, including web search engines, database storage and retrieval, electronic publishing, and multimedia.

How long does it take to complete the program?

The MA program is designed to be a two-year program. Students must complete 36 semester hours of credit to graduate. The maximum amount of time for which course credit can be counted toward the degree is 10 years. If the date of the course is over 10 years old, the student will have to retake that particular course again or find another one that meets the requirement.

How much does it cost?

Costs of tuition and fees per semester hour can be found at the University of Iowa Tuition and Fee Tables. From the options select the appropriate semester and the Graduate College.

What kinds of financial assistance are available?March 2011 LISSO Meeting

Scholarships are available as well as some quarter-time research assistantships. Further information about the School's financial aid.

Do you offer courses via distance education?

SLIS offers a number of both core and elective courses on-line in a synchronous delivery mode. Although courses are not currently scheduled to guarantee the completion of the degree on-line, with careful planning a substantial number of credits towards the MA LIS at the University of Iowa can be completed in this manner. Applicants who would like to take advantage of distance learning are encouraged to contact us regarding this option.

Is the GRE required?

No. Effective Fall 2013 the GRE is no longer required.

How many students apply to the SLIS program and how many do you admit each year?

Admissions to the School have become increasingly competitive. We now receive approximately 75 - 100 applications every year. Traditionally we have admitted a third of those applicants to the program.

How many students are enrolled in the program?

The number of students enrolled in the MA program varies but averages around 90 students. Additionally, there are students who are enrolled in classes who are not officially admitted to the degree program.

How do transfer credits work?

Transfer credits up to 6 semester hours from other institutions may be accepted toward the MLIS. Approval is granted by the Transfer Credit Committee on a course-by-course basis. The student applying for the transfer must fill out the appropriate request form, provide course descriptions and syllabi, and provide a written rationale explaining how the course goals and content are applicable to to his or her program.

I am not currently an Iowa resident. What steps can I take to achieve residency?

Please visit the Officer of the Registrar's web site to learn about residency requirements, and view their informative brochure on How to Establish Yourself as an Iowa Resident.