Rutgers University Online Library Science Masters Review

In any field, pursuing a master’s degree is a major investment of time (and money), and for most professionals, it’s a way to get a better, higher-paying job. For professionals in library and information science, though, a master’s degree is typically required to get most jobs. Fortunately for library science students across the country, many well-regarded colleges and universities offer this education online.

Rutgers University is one such school, so let’s take a look at what prospective students should know before they make their decisions about where to complete their library science master’s degree.

About the Program

Before we dive into what makes the Rutgers library science a good option, let’s check out some basic facts and figures about the university and what it offers.

Basics

  • Institution type: Public
  • Campus: New Brunswick, New Jersey
  • Accreditation: American Library Association (ALA)
  • Program format: Online, traditional

Tuition and fees

  • Expected total tuition: $36,000
  • Per credit-hour tuition: $1,000

Degrees & requirements

  • Library science degrees offered: Master of Information
  • Number of credit hours required: 36
  • Estimated time to completion: 26 months
  • Optional specializations: Archives and Preservation, Data Science, Interaction Design and Informatics (on-campus only), Library and Information Science, School Librarianship, Technology, Information and Management

Biggest Pros

What are the biggest factors in favor of Rutgers from the perspective of the average student?

Accreditation

In most fields, accreditation by various bodies isn’t looked at as the be-all/end-all of a program. But in library and information science, earning a degree from a program that’s accredited by the American Library Association (ALA) is more than just nice to have. In many cases, the state certifications required to get a variety of jobs is conditioned on getting a master’s degree from a program that’s earned the ALA’s stamp of approval, which Rutgers has.

Online degree

Most students will be able to earn their Rutgers information science degree entirely online. One exception is for students pursuing the interaction design and informatics specialization, as they must complete several classes and labs in-person.

Specializations

Several academic specialty options are available that allow students to focus their coursework on the area in which they’re most interested. This helps students build expertise in a niche area, which can help them secure the ideal job upon graduation.

Biggest Cons

What factors are most likely to make students think twice about attending Rutgers for their library science program?

Cost

While online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency status, that rate is quite high, especially among public institutions. Rutgers graduates can expect to pay about $36,000 on tuition alone by the time their training is complete, which puts Rutgers in the upper half of online library science degrees when it comes to cost.

Technology focus

While several specialties are available, most of them are heavily technology-focused. This means that for students who want to pursue education on the library side of library and information science, their options may be limited in the Rutgers program.

Rutgers Online Library Science Program FAQs

Here’s a look at a few of the questions students most frequently ask about the library science program at Rutgers.

Do I need to submit a GRE score?

Applicants to the Rutgers information science program who have undergraduate GPAs that fall below 3.0 must submit a GRE score to be considered for admission. The minimum score has not been published and may vary by academic term.

Are there special graduation requirements?

Yes, students must complete a capstone course in the form of an e-portfolio. This is a non-credit course in which students reflect upon and assess their experiences and coursework by compiling a portfolio showcasing their accomplishments.

Is a thesis required?

No thesis is required to earn the Master of Information degree from Rutgers’ School of Communication and Information.

Conclusion

Completing a master’s degree, in many fields, represents the pinnacle of academic achievement. Indeed, for prospective professionals in library and information science, a master’s degree is a signal that an individual has dedicated their lives to the study of this field. But a master’s degree in library and information science is more than just a sign of dedication, and the average professional in the field knows they’ll probably need a master’s degree just to get their career started on the right foot. Fortunately, Rutgers University offers an online degree in a variety of specialty focus areas, and it’s ideal for students who want their education to focus on technology.

Additional Resources

SEARCH MASTERS IN LIBRARY SCIENCE DEGREES

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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+