|Syracuse University||Online MS in Library and Information Science||✓|
|University of Denver||Master of Library and Information Science||✓|
Prospective students should look for graduate education in library science that is accredited by the American Library Association. At this time, no library science programs at universities in the state of Montana feature ALA accredited degrees.
Consider a Featured Online Library Program Taking Applications
|Master||Online MS in Library and Information Science
ALA-accredited. No GRE required to apply.
|University of Denver
|Master||Master of Library and Information Science
ALA-Accredited, No GRE Required.
|St. John's University
|Master||Online M.S. in Library and Information Science
ALA Accredited. Complete in as little as 2 years.
|University of West Alabama
|Doctorate||Education Specialist: Library Media
Are There Online Library Science Degrees?
At this time, there are no online degrees in library science available in the state of Montana accredited by the ALA. However, there is a specialization in library media that is offered by the University of Montana (UM). Education for this endorsement and related Master's degrees are distributed through the Phyllis J. Washington College of Education.
University of Montana has Masters Degrees with Library Media Specialization
The Library Media Endorsement at UM is available fully online and focused on the Kindergarten through 12th grade school range. This may be implemented in the Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, but the full program is not available in an online format. There are two Master's degrees in curriculum studies that focus on elementary or secondary education.
Core subjects in the Master of Education include how to teach in classrooms with students from other cultures, research methods, and curriculum design and evaluation. Specific courses toward the specialization include collection development and assessment of library programs and services in the school. A practicum is required to apply teaching and technology skills in a school setting.
Campus-based and online ALA-Accredited library science degrees in Montana
Montana State University
|Library Media Certificate||Online|
University of Montana
|M.Ed. Teacher Librarian||Online|
Finding Montana Library Science Degrees
Students may find graduate-level programs of this type under the disciplines of Librarianship, Library Science, or Library and Information Studies. Programs that feature accreditation ensures that it has been reviewed by the ALA and has a strong curriculum and experienced faculty members that teach these courses. Optimal student resources and similar mission goals will provide the best preparation for top librarian positions.
As an alternative, a Master's degree in education and/or leadership with a specialization in school librarianship may also be considered. Along with the ALA, these programs are generally accredited by the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). Individuals looking to become a school librarian will often need a teacher's license and pass specific exam credentials.
Admission and Technical Requirements
To gain entry into a Master's degree in Library Science, prospective students should already hold a Bachelor's degree in an educational discipline. Other requirements may include transcripts showing a 3.0 GPA or higher, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. The latter should feature career goals and/or why the individual is applying to the specific institution.
Technical requirements for an online program vary based on what the university uses for the learning management system. In many cases, using a desktop or laptop computer is required with high-speed internet access and a compatible web browser. Some accessibility may be offered through mobile devices with an Android or iOS operating system.
Career Options in Library Media
Around 600 librarian workers and media specialists are recognized by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2020. These positions are spread out across the few metropolitan areas and rural parts of the state. Combined, the Billings and Missoula metropolitan area represent one-fifth of all workers in the state.
Billings is the largest city in Montana and lone location with over 100,000 residents. Montana State University has a campus location in Billings, but its main campus is located in Bozeman with over 15,000 students in enrollment. Bozeman is approximately 140 miles to the west of Billings.
Librarian Requirements in Montana
Library directors must be certified in the state of Montana for public positions. Professionals must hold at least 60 credit hours of specialized or continuing education over a four-year period, with a third of that work in library administration. Other credit hours are needed in library services, collection management, and technology.
An accredited Master’s degree from the ALA would satisfy these requirements for library directors. School librarian licensure requires a teaching license and the passing of a Praxis II Library Media Content exam. In addition, all of the school-based professionals must complete the following course: An Introduction to Indian Education for All in Montana.
Montana Library Association
The Montana Library Association (MLA) looks to enhance offerings from local libraries in all segments of the state. A number of benefits are available for members, including access to the annual conference. Hundreds of Montana-based librarians come together for the conference, and there are additional joint conferences from other states in the region.
Member benefits include access to community forms to network and connect with other professionals for innovation and solving library-related problems. Additional access to a newsletter, FOCUS, providing the latest news and what to expect from libraries at the local level. Annual membership runs between July 1st to June 30th.
Librarian Salary Estimates in Montana
Librarians in the state of Montana make an annual mean wage of $52,100 according to the BLS. This is higher than many surrounding states, including Idaho and Wyoming, but slightly lower than North Dakota. Billings and the western half of the state see a higher salary average of at least $57,000 annually.