Library Science Graduate Programs and PhDs

In order to become a librarian, it is imperative that you complete a library science graduate program. A master's degree in library science, librarianship, or library and information studies is the least amount of education needed to become a librarian. Some people, however, go above and beyond this and acquire a PhD in library science. Those who aspire to this level of education usually wish to gain leadership positions, teaching positions, or wish to research a particular area of the library science field.


Getting Into a Library Science PhD Program

Getting into a doctoral library science graduate program can be difficult. Like most PhD programs, admission is competitive. You must have a master's degree in a field related to library science. If you do not (and the program accepts you and recognizes your willingness to learn), than you will probably be required to take extra classes to catch you up with the other students who already harbor a vast knowledge of the field. Usually, people who seek a PhD in library science are already librarians who have years of experience under their belt. So, before seeking a doctoral degree in library science, it is recommended that you get a master's degree in librarianship or a related field and a position at a library.

As stated before, many people wishing to acquire PhD in library science already have experience in the field. These people have usually risen to mid-level in the hierarchy of librarianship. A PhD program would provide them with the leadership skills they need to become a senior librarian, the one who runs the show. Leadership is a large aspect of the curriculum in a library science doctoral program.

Other people seeking a PhD in library science are people who have a passion for education. These people have a love of library science and wish to pass on their knowledge to others. Well, since others must have at least a master's degree to become a librarian, one needs to have a PhD to be able to teach those programs. Teaching library science is also a great way to stay on top of all the new trends in the field.

A third reason for wishing to pursue a doctorate degree from a library science graduate program is to conduct research in a particular area of library science. PhDs require a person to write a dissertation, that is a very long (and I do mean long--though the actual length varies depending on the university program of your choice) research paper. Research is usually conducted on specialized topics of library science. Intellectual freedom and censorship is an example of a dissertation topic. If you wish to become an expert in a particular area or facet of library science, than a PhD is a great way to do just that.

In short, there are many reasons one might want to work for a PhD in library science. A greater education is always a good thing (and often yields higher salaries). If you want a leadership position, a professorship, or simply wish to learn more about your field, than why not research library science graduate programs and start your journey towards a PhD today?