School Librarian Program

Currently, there are many openings in school librarianship in Kentucky and throughout the nation. Requirements for certification vary from state to state, but may normally be met by completing certification requirements within the Master of Science in Library Science (MSLS) curriculum.

Completion of the MSLS is required for school librarian certification. Further, all students seeking certification in school librarianship at the University of Kentucky need to hold a valid teaching certificate or its equivalent. A copy of the teaching certificate must be submitted to the School when applying for admission. Photocopies are accepted. Students who do not hold a valid teaching certificate may still enter the regular MSLS degree program, though they will be unable to receive school librarian certification.

Our program meets requirements set by the Kentucky Education Professionals Standards Board (see here, navigate to page 3).

Program of Study


The curriculum plan for School Media Librarian P-12 Certification fulfills requirements for certification as a school media librarian in Kentucky. Thirty-six (36) semester hours and successful completion of the MSLS are required for certification. Courses must be completed with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and adhere to all requirements of the MSLS degree (for further information, refer to the Student Handbook under the Student Resources tab on this website).

In addition to coursework, students must successfully pass the Praxis II Library Media Specialty Examination.  The current degree program includes eligibility for change in rank.  The curriculum contract outlines the courses, entrance, and midpoint requirements for school librarian program students.

Transfer Hours

The limit on transfer hours is six (6) semester graduate hours, except that the limit is nine (9) hours where transfer involves the School’s courses taken in post-baccalaureate status. Requirements for transfer hours include: 1) The hours fulfill requirements of the program, 2) the grade for the hours is a B or above, 3) the hours were obtained in an ALA accredited institution of higher learning, and 4) the hours were completed within eight years prior to the end of the semester in which the student graduates with the MSLS degree.

State Authorization

Requirements for school media librarians may vary from state to state, so it is important to take this into consideration as you plan for your degree. If you are planning to enroll in UK's MSLS degree program as an out-of-state student seeking concurrent school media certification, please know you may need to hold a KY teaching license to complete a certification program here. If you are a current student seeking concurrent certification in Kentucky but plan to move/become a school librarian elsewhere, please check with that state's certification board to ensure yours will transfer. Students may also consult UK's State Authorization by Program and Licensure disclosure by state guides.


Degree Requirements for School Librarian Program Students

The curriculum plan for School Media Librarian P-12 Certification fulfills requirements for certification as a school media librarian in Kentucky. Thirty-six (36) semester hours and successful completion of the MSLS are required for certification. Courses must be completed with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and adhere to all requirements of the MSLS degree.

Did you matriculate under a different plan of study than listed below? Please contact infosci [at] (Student Affairs) for assistance.



Core Courses (all required)

LIS 600 Information in Society
LIS 601 Information Search
LIS 602 Knowledge Organization
LIS 603 Management in Info Organizations

School Library Curriculum

School Library Specialization Requirements (all required)

LIS 644 Administration of School Media Centers
LIS 647: Current Trends in School Media Centers
LIS 648: Technology in School Media Centers
LIS 676: School Media Practicum

IT Requirement

Choose ONE from these:
LIS 636 Foundations of Information Technology
LIS 634 Information Architecture
LIS 638 Internet Technologies & Information Services
LIS 661 Intro to Data Science**
LIS 662 Data Analysis & Visualization**
LIS 665 Intro to Digital Libraries (if not used for program requirement)
LIS 668 Database Management
LIS 690 (any special topics IT course^ OR EDC 600 level technology course)
Eligible EDU 600 level courses include:
EDL 661: School Technology Leadership (3 hours)
EDL 662: Digital Age Learning and Technology Leadership (3 hours)
EDL 650: School Program Improvement (3 hours)
EDL 664: Technology Leadership and School Improvement (3 hours)
EDL 665: School Technology Leadership for Digital Citizenship (3 hours)
Please contact your adviser regarding special topics IT courses before registering to ensure the course fulfills the requirement. Not all LIS 690 courses fulfill the IT requirement.

Literature Requirement

Choose TWO from these:

LIS 610 Library Materials and Literature for Children
LIS 612 Youth Literature for a Diverse Society**
LIS 614 Library Materials and Literature for Young Adults
Other Elective

Choose ONE:

LIS 608 Research Methods, LIS 613 Info Resources and Services for Children, LIS 616 Information Behavior of Children & Youth, LIS 625 Info Literacy Instruction, LIS 627 Consumer Health Info Resources, LIS 665 Intro to Digital Libraries, LIS 690 ONLY with Advisor Approval^


^Previously filled by LIS 655, please consult your adviser if you have questions.

*There are a handful of courses which, with adviser approval, may be subsituted for LIS 655. See curriculum contract for details.

**This class was formerly an LIS 690 Special Topics course.


School Media Portfolios

All programs require the completion of a portfolio and require a practicum as well. In addition to the LIS Exit Assessment, all students in the school librarian program must complete a School Librarian Certification Portfolio as part of the coursework for LIS 676. Portfolio documents should reflect key knowledge and skills acquired throughout the program. These documents come from a variety of sources and may include entries collected during course work as well as professional development opportunities. Portfolios are finalized during the practicum and reviewed at the conclusion of the candidate's practicum experience. The portfolios are evaluated during the midpoint and final assessments, and must include required entries that document Kentucky's Teacher Standards and the AASL Standards for School Media Librarians. Copies of the Standards can be obtained from the faculty member who is responsible for the practicum or from the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board.


Exit Requirements

Please be sure you have submitted your Advanced Level Educator Packet or EPSB will not be able to confirm your enrollment in a certification program.

1. Completed 36 hours of coursework for the MSLS degree
2. Completed LIS 600, 601, 602, and 603 before the semester they wish to graduate
3. Earned a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher for LIS coursework
4. Successfully completed all School Librarian program requirements and applicable certification items including examinations (i.e., Praxis)
5. Submitted and earned a passing grade on the exit assessment and completed all graduation paperwork.
6. Successfully completed and submitted the certification portfolio for the School Librarian program.

State Authorization Disclosure

Per state laws, distance education courses and programs must be legally authorized in a state prior to offering courses or programs to students residing there. Therefore, program availability varies by state. Students should check the UK Out-of-State Educational Activities website to determine if a distance education program at the University of Kentucky is available in their state of residence.

Student Relocation Disclosure

All distance education students should keep in mind that relocating during the course of a program to another state could impact whether that student can continue in the course and/or meet the eligibility requirements of that state. If you plan to move to another state during your program, please contact your program advisor as soon as possible.

Licensure Disclosure

States may have additional requirements for programs that lead to professional licensure or certification. If you plan to use the degree to seek licensure, you should also determine if the degree meets the educational requirements for licensure in your state. Visit the UK Out-of-State Educational Activities website to learn more about your program.

Tuition Refunds & Questions

For information on how tuition refunds are processed and related tuition/fee questions, please contact Student Account Services.


If you have specific questions about the school librarian program, please , sis [at] (contact us) and we'll assist you.