New York Masters in Library Science

Far from the shushing school marms of decades past, today’s librarian needs to be an expert in all manner of information science, and they can work in a variety of settings, from elementary schools to public institutions to law libraries.

Pursuing a library and information science career typically means completing a master’s degree, which may be required by state law depending on the job. Let’s take a look at the graduate library and information science programs in the state of New York, as well as what students can expect to earn professionally in these careers.

New York Master of Library Science Programs

Master’s degrees in library science range from those that help set the foundation of working inside schools to those that can lead to positions in information science. Some of the possible degrees that can be earned in the field include Master of Library Science (MLS), Master of Science in Library Science (MS), Master of Information Science (MIS), Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) or Master of Science in Information (MSI).

SEE ALSO: Top Online Masters in Library Science Programs

While every program is a little different, it’s important for prospective students to consider their eventual career goals. If they’re planning to work in a library or school setting, it’s often required to complete a degree from an institution accredited by the American Library Association (ALA).

Fortunately for library students in New York, the state has more ALA-accredited graduate programs than any other state, with seven colleges and universities offering a variety of degrees in the field.

Let’s take a closer look at the schools and what programs they have available:

University at Albany (SUNY)

  • Institution type: Public
  • Delivery method: Online (master’s degrees)
  • Campus: Albany
  • Master’s tuition: $11,310 in-state; $23,100 out-of-state
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Information Science School Library, Master of Science in Information Science (STEM), PhD in Information Science
  • Graduate certificates offered: Library and Information Science

The University at Albany, within the State University of New York system, offers a fully online Master of Science in Information Science School Library that leads to initial certification as a library media specialist. Other potential degrees include a STEM-designated information science master’s degree as well as a Ph.D. in Information Science.

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University at Buffalo (SUNY)

  • Institution type: Public
  • Delivery method: Online (master’s)
  • Campus: Buffalo
  • Master’s tuition: $11,330 in-state; $13,570 out-of-state
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Information and Library Science, Master of Science in School Librarianship, MS/JD Legal Information Management and Analysis, MS/MA Music Librarianship, PhD in Information Science
  • Graduate certificates offered: Library and Information Science

SUNY’s Buffalo campus is home to several notable ALA-accredited graduate degrees in library science, led by the Master of Science in Information and Library Science. Degrees in school, music and legal library science are also available, and all four master’s degrees, including both joint degrees, can be earned online, though some also offer the option to attend on-campus.

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Long Island University Post

  • Institution type: Private
  • Delivery method: Both
  • Campus: Greenvale
  • Master’s tuition: $23,440
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Library Information Science, Master of Science in Library and Information Science (School Library Media), Dual Master’s (with New York University), PhD in Information Studies
  • Graduate certificates offered: Archives and Records Management, Public Library Administration

LIU Post, the largest campus in the university system, is home to an ALA-accredited MSLIS degree that’s based in the Palmer School of Library and Information Science, one of the best-regarded library science schools in the country. The degree is offered both online and in-person, depending on student preference, and an M.S. with a focus on school library media is also available, in addition to other degree options.

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Pratt Institute

  • Institution type: Private
  • Delivery method: Traditional
  • Campus: Manhattan
  • Master’s tuition: $36,513
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Library and Information Science, Master of Science in Museums and Digital Culture, Master of Science in Data Analytics and Visualization, Master of Science in Information Experience Design
  • Graduate certificates offered: Archives, Conservation and Digital Curation, Museum Libraries, Museum Studies

Pratt’s library and information science program has the distinction of being the oldest in North America, offering a selection of degrees that are quite unique in the industry, giving students a chance to study information and library science through the lens of creative and cultural expression.

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Queens College (CUNY)

  • Institution type: Public
  • Delivery method: Traditional
  • Campus: Queens
  • Master’s tuition: $11,090 in-state; $20,520 out-of-state
  • Degrees offered: Master of Library Science, Master of Library Science, School Library Media Specialist, MLS/MA in Library Science and History
  • Graduate certificates offered: Librarianship, Children’s and Young Adult Services in the Public Library, Archives and Preservation of Cultural Materials

Queens College, part of the City University of New York system, offers the only ALA-accredited library science master’s program at a public institution in the New York City area, and students can choose from a few possible degree paths.

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St. John’s University

  • Institution type: Private
  • Delivery method: Online
  • Campus: Queens
  • Expected total tuition: $50,203
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Library and Information Science
  • Graduate certificates offered: Management for Information Professionals

St. John’s University is home to a fully online Master of Science in Library and Information Science (MSLIS) that allows students to choose from a total of six specialty areas — academic librarianship, archival studies, management for information professionals, public librarianship, special librarianship and youth studies.

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Syracuse University

  • Institution type: Private
  • Delivery method: Both
  • Campus: Syracuse
  • Master’s tuition: $40,392
  • Degrees offered: Master of Science in Library and Information Science, Master of Science in Library and Information Science, School Media Specialization
  • Graduate certificates offered: School Media

The Syracuse University Library and Information Science program first earned ALA accreditation in 1928, around the time that the telephone became standard in homes but long before the advent of computers and the internet. Today, students can choose to earn their degree in-person or online, choosing either a traditional MSLIS or a degree specializing in school media.

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New York Library Science Outlook

New York’s average annual wage for librarians of just under $70,000 is the 10th-highest in the country and is considerably higher than the Bureau of Labor Statistics-reported national average of about $58,000. Unlike most other states, library workers in schools and other educational institutions have a higher average salary than librarians who work in other fields, and these workers earn an average of $73,130, second only to the District of Columbia.

Not surprisingly, average salaries for librarians are higher in the New York City area, though the greater metro area of the city has an average wage that’s only slightly higher than the overall state average. Librarians in the New York City area, which includes portions of several states, can expect to earn an average of just under $74,000 per year. Ithaca’s average wage is only a couple of hundred dollars behind that. School-based library and information workers can expect to earn their highest wages in Ithaca, where the average wage is just over $93,000.

At the other end of the spectrum, including all cities with available data, average wages for librarians are lowest in Glens Falls ($43,780), while school-based library workers can expect to earn their lowest salaries in Elmira ($51,960)

Employment opportunities for many types of library workers are expected to become much more prevalent in the U.S. over the next several years, and New York is one of the best for growth projections. In fact, according to U.S. Department of Labor projections, librarians should see employment rate growth of 12.6% through 2028, which is much higher than the national rate.

Library workers in educational settings have an even brighter outlook in New York. Employment of these workers is expected to grow by nearly 23% in New York through 2028, which makes the state No. 2 overall (Utah’s growth rate is the highest).

Conclusion

Helping people find the information they need is at the heart of any library and information science program, and as technology and knowledge advance along similar paths, the need will continue to grow for library and media specialists in New York and beyond.

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Sarah J

Sarah J is Chief Editor and Founder at MastersinLibraryScience.net, formerly LibraryScienceList.com (LSL). Join us today and become a community curator. We can also be found on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook. Learn more about me on Google+