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Inspire a lifelong love of learning, reading and discovery in students. In Dominican’s School Library Media Program, you’ll train to serve as an information innovator and leader for students and fellow educators.

School library information specialists play one of the most important roles in today’s complex and dynamic educational landscape. They serve as experts in information literacy and equity, empower students of all backgrounds and abilities to follow their curiosities, and help shape learning curricula.

Ours is one of the most respected graduate programs in school library media in the Chicago area. That’s because of our record of developing highly qualified school librarians who advance the mission of their schools and communities in lasting ways.

Our Chicagoland location means you’ll be studying in a dynamic region full of options for completing your clinical practice and finding employment in the field. And, you can study for your school library media endorsement in a format that works for you.

  • Courses offered in a mix of online, in-person and hybrid formats
  • Choose master’s degree or endorsement-only paths, depending on your goals and prior experience 
  • Select from multiple in-person class times, including evenings
  • Put your learning to work immediately in our vast network of clinical practice settings
  • Connect to a strong alumni network of school library leaders

Take the next step. Request information

What You’ll Learn

In a comprehensive curriculum drawn from Dominican’s outstanding Library and Information Science graduate program, you’ll study the principles of librarianship with a special focus on service to children and youth. You’ll examine the core concepts of teaching and learning as well as information access and delivery. You’ll learn to integrate library services and school curricula, and you’ll master the subtleties of information literacy and instructional technology, as well as program administration, assessment and advocacy. The program places special emphasis on the philosophies of elementary, middle and secondary schools, and on the developmental psychology of students at those grade levels.

Areas covered include:

  • General principles of librarianship with particular focus on service to children and youth
  • Information literacy and instructional technology
  • Integration with the school curriculum
  • Program administration, assessment, and advocacy
  • Leadership and strategic communication

You’ll be prepared to guide both students and your fellow teachers in accessing, evaluating and managing information. More broadly, you’ll be ready to make ethical, value-centered decisions, facilitate user learning, organize knowledge systems, and integrate information resources into the full learning experience.

Multiple Pathways of Study

MLIS + School Library Licensure and Endorsement

Students who are not already licensed to teach can earn the full Master of Library and Information Science degree, plus an Illinois Professional Educator License (PEL) with a PK-12 Library Information Specialist (LIS) Endorsement in as little as two years.

School Library Media (endorsement only program)

For educators already licensed to teach in Illinois, we offer an option to add the Library Information Specialist Endorsement to an existing Illinois Professional Educator License (PEL) in a program of study that can be completed in as little as one year.

Quick Program Details
  • 36 credits (MLIS + School Library Licensure/Endorsement) or 18 credits (endorsement only)
  • A mix of online, hybrid and in-person courses on our River Forest campus
  • Complete in as little as one year, or two if you’re seeking the full master’s degree along with your endorsement
  • Dominican’s MLIS is accredited by the American Library Association (ALA)*

What to Expect as You Earn Your School Library Media Endorsement

The School Library Media Program is one of the iSchool’s most popular and powerful career pathways. The program qualifies you for an Illinois Professional Educator License with a Library Information Specialist Endorsement PK–12.

At Dominican, we pride ourselves on the hands-on experiences and personal attention our students receive. You’ll have a chance to put your learning to work immediately at a school drawn from our vast network of clinical practice settings. The Butler Children’s Literature Center offers special opportunities to learn first-hand about books for children and young adults. All this is offered within the supportive context of a values-based, relationship-centered learning community.

Renowned School of Information Studies (SOIS)

Dominican’s School of Information Studies sets the standard for excellence among the best School Library Media programs in the Chicago area. We continually re-evaluate our rigorous academics to make sure our students gain the skills needed to be successful in today’s ever-changing environment. See what sets us apart

Nationally recognized faculty

Our faculty are nationally recognized leaders in the information field. In the School Library Media Program, they include veteran teachers from school districts that support state-of-the-art instructional technology. Our small class sizes allow them to get to know you—and become the foundation of your professional network. Meet our faculty

Areas of faculty expertise within the School of Information Studies include:

  • Digital libraries and digital curation
  • Information policy
  • Media and services for youth
  • Archives and cultural heritage
  • Informatics
  • Cataloging and classification
  • School library media
  • Management
  • Leadership and advocacy
Strong graduate retention, achievement and career outcomes

Graduates of Dominican University’s School of Information Studies continue to meet and exceed program standards and completion rates—and enter into a wide variety of professional positions in the field upon graduation. See our graduates' completion, achievement and career outcomes (pdf)

Financing Your Degree

Along with opportunities for financial aid through loans and grants, the School of Information Studies offers a variety of departmental scholarships, depending upon your area of study.

Contact our Office of Financial Aid to learn more. We can be reached at (708) 524-6809 or at

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What does a school library information specialist do?

School library information specialists guide students and fellow teachers in accessing a wide range of resources and technologies to support the educational curriculum and foster a love of learning and exploration. School library information specialists also serve as advocates for information literacy and equity, as well as freedom of intellectual inquiry.

What can I do with a School Library Specialist Endorsement?

With your Illinois Professional Educator License and Library Information Specialist Endorsement PK–12, you will be qualified for service at the elementary, middle and high school levels. Our graduates find work in varied roles and educational settings across the state of Illinois. They include school librarians, library media specialists, teacher-librarians, library directors, and information literacy specialists.

How do I apply?

To apply, students must submit an online application, a personal essay and official undergraduate transcripts. Before you apply, make sure you review our full application and admission requirements.

Ready to take the next step? Apply now online

Still have questions? See our detailed FAQs

Prepare for a Career Where You Can Make a Difference

School librarianship is a complex and impactful profession that makes learning curricula exciting and dynamic, fosters a lifelong love of learning and teaches students to become discerning and effective users of information and technology. Be a part of something meaningful and in-demand. Request information today

*On January 20, 2023, ALA's Committee on Accreditation voted to continue the Dominican MLIS's full accreditation status for another seven-year term. The next comprehensive review will take place in 2029. View the 2022 MLIS program presentation (pdf opens in a new window)