Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS)
The MLIS program prepares professionals to exercise creativity, integrity and leadership in designing, implementing and promoting programs and systems for the creation, organization, management, preservation and effective use of information and collections. Graduates of the MLIS program go on to careers as librarians, information managers, researchers, analysts, interaction designers, web content specialists, and more.
The MLIS degree program offers a wide range of courses and is highly customizable based on specific student interests. Areas of particular focus include the following:
- Information sources and services
- Digital resource management
- Human-information interaction
- Information analysis and management
- Services and management of information organizations
- Youth services and literature
There are four pathways in the program and students may use these as a guide to focus their studies:
Moreover, students can add formal specializations to their degree:
What makes the program unique?
The program has strong connections to the local and provincial library community, offering opportunities for professional development, networking and job experience with more than 150 libraries, archives, museums and cultural heritage organizations.
Our wide range of hands-on learning courses offer students the opportunity to put their theory into practice through internships, job shadowing, and paid co-op experience.
Within the school students also have many opportunities to collaborate with faculty on a wide range of research projects.
The school also offers one of the only programs in North America to focus on Indigenous issues in information management. The First Nations Curriculum Concentration (FNCC) is designed to prepare information professionals to work effectively with, and within, Indigenous communities in support of ongoing developments in Aboriginal culture and languages, self-government, treaty negotiation and litigation. During their program of study, iSchool students are supported in gaining experience working in Indigenous-oriented information organizations.
The program participates in a collaborative, cross-disciplinary program called Designing for People (DFP). The DFP is a research-oriented program, structured as 12 credits of specialization components that enrich another degree program. Students receive a degree in their home department but their program is enhanced with core knowledge from anchor courses and electives. Students are required to complete a research thesis with their DFP supervisor(s).
Contact the program
Admission Information & Requirements
1) Check Eligibility
Minimum Academic Requirements
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:
Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Please review the program website carefully to understand the program requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitive process.
English Language Test
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:
TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language - internet-based
Overall score requirement: 100
IELTS: International English Language Testing System
Overall score requirement: 7.5
Other Test Scores
Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:
The GRE is not required.
2) Meet Deadlines
January 2023 Intake
Application Open Date15 February 2022
3) Prepare Application
All applicants have to submit transcripts from all past post-secondary study. Document submission requirements depend on whether your institution of study is within Canada or outside of Canada.
Letters of Reference
A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.
Statement of Interest
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
Students in research-based programs usually require a faculty member to function as their supervisor. Please follow the instructions provided by each program whether applicants should contact faculty members.
Instructions regarding supervisor contact for Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS)
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
4) Apply Online
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
Faculty at the UBC iSchool are internationally recognized for their research and contribution to the field of library, archival, and information studies. Please visit the research page on our website to read more about the current projects faculty are involved in.
Students at the iSchool benefit not only from close interactions with faculty members and fellow students, but also with practitioners from their chosen field. UBC iSchool offers students a suite of hands on learning courses including practicums, internships and professional experiences. These experiences range from hands-on work, project based or independent work, and job shadow type experiences. The school also participates in a paid co-op program for students, preparing them for careers in a variety of organizations and settings.
Tuition & Financial Support
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,807.23||$3,524.15|
|Tuition per year|
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$3,200.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$1,057.05 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,366.20 (check cost calculator)|
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. Tuition fees are reviewed annually by the UBC Board of Governors. In recent years, tuition increases have been 2% for continuing domestic students and between 2% and 5% for continuing international students. New students may see higher increases in tuition. Admitted students who defer their admission are subject to the potentially higher tuition fees for incoming students effective at the later program start date. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.
Applicants to UBC have access to a variety of funding options, including merit-based (i.e. based on your academic performance) and need-based (i.e. based on your financial situation) opportunities.
Program Funding Packages
Every year, the iSchool awards more than 30 distinct prizes and scholarships to incoming, continuing and graduating Master’s students. These awards are in addition to bursaries and other funding from the Faculty of Graduate Studies. Masters students who receive an ARL Kaleidoscope, ALA Spectrum, or SAA Mosaic scholarship will receive a complementary scholarship from the iSchool
International students may be automatically eligible for an International Tuition Award valued at $3,200 per year.
UBC has launched Canada's first Blockchain training pathway for graduate students. The Graduate Pathway on Blockchain and Decentralized Trust Technologies will be a 12-credit non-degree training program that augments existing Master's and Phd programs. Additional funding may be available for students as part of the Blockchain pathway.
Scholarships & awards (merit-based funding)
All applicants are encouraged to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund their graduate education. The database lists merit-based scholarships and awards and allows for filtering by various criteria, such as domestic vs. international or degree level.
Teaching Assistantships (GTA)
Graduate programs may have Teaching Assistantships available for registered full-time graduate students. Full teaching assistantships involve 12 hours work per week in preparation, lecturing, or laboratory instruction although many graduate programs offer partial TA appointments at less than 12 hours per week. Teaching assistantship rates are set by collective bargaining between the University and the Teaching Assistants' Union.
Research Assistantships (GRA)
Many professors are able to provide Research Assistantships (GRA) from their research grants to support full-time graduate students studying under their direction. The duties usually constitute part of the student's graduate degree requirements. A Graduate Research Assistantship is a form of financial support for a period of graduate study and is, therefore, not covered by a collective agreement. Unlike other forms of fellowship support for graduate students, the amount of a GRA is neither fixed nor subject to a university-wide formula. The stipend amounts vary widely, and are dependent on the field of study and the type of research grant from which the assistantship is being funded. Some research projects also require targeted research assistance and thus hire graduate students on an hourly basis.
Financial aid (need-based funding)
Canadian and US applicants may qualify for governmental loans to finance their studies. Please review eligibility and types of loans.
All students may be able to access private sector or bank loans.
Foreign government scholarships
Many foreign governments provide support to their citizens in pursuing education abroad. International applicants should check the various governmental resources in their home country, such as the Department of Education, for available scholarships.
Working while studying
The possibility to pursue work to supplement income may depend on the demands the program has on students. It should be carefully weighed if work leads to prolonged program durations or whether work placements can be meaningfully embedded into a program.
Tax credits and RRSP withdrawals
Canadian residents with RRSP accounts may be able to use the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) which allows students to withdraw amounts from their registered retirement savings plan (RRSPs) to finance full-time training or education for themselves or their partner.
Please review Filing taxes in Canada on the student services website for more information.
Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.
Enrolment, Duration & Other Stats
These statistics show data for the Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
Completion Rates & Times
This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.
Abdul-Mageed, Muhammad (Artificial intelligence (AI); Deep Learning; Natural Language Processing; Machine Learning; Computational Linguistics; Social Media Mining; Arabic)
Bullard, Julia (Organization of information and knowledge resources; Library science and information studies; classification systems; Cultural Institutions (Museums, Libraries, etc.); Information Systems; metadata; values-in-design)
Kwakkel, Erik (Archival, repository and related studies; Library science and information studies; Codicology; History of Libraries; History of the Book; Medieval Manuscripts; Paleography; reading)
Meyers, Eric (youth online behavior, information seeking, web search, libraries, public libraries, school libraries, academic libraries, learning, virtual worlds, collaboration, social networks, new media, digital literacy, information literacy )
Nathan, Lisa (Other social sciences; Critical studies of technology; Climate Justice; Epistiemic Justice; information policy; values in design; Indigenous Information Initiatives; Collapse | Adaptive Informatics; value sensitive design)
O'Brien, Heather (All other social sciences, n.e.c.; user engagement; user experience; community engagement; information seeking and retrieval; information access; cognitive processes related to information searching and evaluation; health technologies)
Sinnamon, Luanne Silvia (Archival, repository and related studies; Library science and information studies; human information interaction; Information Systems; information retrieval; New Technology and Social Impacts)
Turner, Hannah (Archival, repository and related studies; Library science and information studies; cataloguing and classification; Cultural Institutions (Museums, Libraries, etc.); Impacts of New Information Technologies; information practice; museum anthropology; Science and technology studies)
Library and Information Studies covers the following areas of study: First Nations Curriculum Concentration; Data services; Librarianship; Community and culture; Information interaction and design; Designing for People; Information sources and services; Digital resource management; Information analysis and management; Services and management of information organizations; Youth services and literature.