List of Courses in the UK followed by some advice on choosing courses and careers.
1. University College London
MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Library and Information Studies
If you want to progress in library or information work, you need a professional qualification, normally chartered Membership of CILIP: the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals. But before you can obtain this, you need to complete a postgraduate programme such as ours.
2. Leeds Metropolitan University
Students engage in a wide range of studies- several modules are structured to enable students to relate content directly to their own library / information management workplace contexts.
3. Loughborough University, Deparment for Information Science
Information and Library Management MA/MSc/Postgraduate diploma
The programme provides a broad understanding of the principles of librarianship and information work, of the organisation and management of libraries and other information agencies, and of the handling, storage and retrieval of information in all media. The programme is in two parts: taught modules and a dissertation. Teaching emphasises the practical development of skills as well as the exploration of theoretical concepts. We teach research methods and provide one-to-one supervision throughout the dissertation period.
4. Liverpool John Moores University
Information and Library Management MA/MSc/Postgraduate diploma
This one year MA Programme is designed for those seeking a recognised postgraduate qualification in Information and Library Management. The programme leads to two awards, the MA Information and Library Management or the Postgraduate Diploma in Information and Library Management. The Programme is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals.
5. Manchester Metropolitan University
The overall aim of the course is to enable postgraduate students to acquire knowledge and skills appropriate for careers in the diversified labour market for information professionals.
6. Northumbria University
While studying BSc (Hons) Information and Library Management students will explore these issues in a manner that will enable them to gain a career within the public library sector, within one of the many libraries that commercial organisations are increasingly employing or supporting learning and research within an academic library. This means students will gain an insight into all the questions asked above and specialise in understanding how information and media is organised, stored, managed, retrieved, analysed and disseminated.
Information is an all-pervasive commodity. The aims of the programme are to establish the significance of the dynamic role of information and library work in the 'information society and knowledge-based economy' and to develop the knowledge and skills needed to handle effectively the storage, retrieval, analysis and communication of information.
7. University of Sheffield
The MA in Librarianship prepares students in core areas of librarianship, information studies, and organisational and management skills and also allows students to study more specialist library and information-related modules in particular areas of interest. Students are thus equipped to take up jobs in a wide range of employment sectors and in positions that suit their career aspirations.
8. University of the West of England
The MSc Information and Library Management was established in 1995 at Bristol University and transferred to UWE in 2005. It is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). The teaching team is drawn from information systems staff in the Bristol Institute of Technology, staff from UWE Library Services, and senior information professionals from a range of library and information services throughout the region.
9. City University London
10. London Metropolitan University
The information profession is in a period of rapid change. New information and communications technologies have revolutionised the production, storage, retrieval and exploitation of information. The management of information services and the formulation of information policies have been correspondingly re-evaluated.
11. Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen Business School
The MSc in Information and Library Studies has been established for over thirty years and has an excellent record of student success. This practice-based course replicates the workplace environment in many of the taught modules and you will develop your problem-solving, communication and research skills. Additionally, you will learn how to evaluate and practice these skills and utilise them in a professional context.
12. University of Strathclyde
The MSc/PgDip Information and Library Studies (ILS) covers the creation, storage, retrieval and dissemination of information in organisations and in society at large and therefore encompass both public and private sector libraries and information systems and services, together with related subjects such as management, publishing and the evaluation and use of information. The course is intended for graduates in any discipline who wish to pursue a career in the field of information or library services.
13. University of Ulster
This course is designed for library staff in the public and private sectors, in education including schools, colleges or universities and in specialist libraries or information units.
Choosing Courses and Careers
The University of Manchester gives the following advice:
There are many different places to study for a postgraduate qualification in Librarianship or Information Management, and titles and focus of the courses vary. You can choose to do a postgraduate diploma or MA / MSc, and many courses offer both full and part time options. A growing number of institutions are also offering distance learning courses. Have a look at CILIP's list of courses for more information.
CILIP is the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, and it is strongly recommended that you choose a CILIP-accredited course if you are thinking of pursuing a career in the library and information sector.
Entry requirements vary with the institution, but a first degree in any discipline or an equivalent professional qualification will normally be the minimum required. Institutions vary in their emphasis on prior work experience - some insist on a substantial amount, while others will accept candidates with no prior experience. However, any experience that you can get will be extremely valuable. A number of courses offer short work-based placements within the course.
As with all postgraduate courses, applications should be made directly to the institution. You may be offered an interview or invited to attend an open day, where you can meet staff and current students and find out more about the course.
For general information on librarianship as a career, the best place to start is the CILIP website. As a member of CILIP, once you have qualified, you can begin to work towards Chartership, which is regarded as the 'gold standard' for information professionals. Chartered Librarians sometimes receive a higher salary; and Chartership is a pre-requisite for some positions. For more information on salary levels, see the CILIP salary guides.
There are a huge range of options open to you once you are qualified. As well as public and academic libraries, there are specialist libraries for law, music, maps, prisons, schools, the media, and many others. Depending on the size of the library, there will normally be a variety of positions available.
Librarianship and information management are not static careers! You will be expected to continue your professional development throughout your career, and keep up-to-date with new advances and technology. CILIP and other bodies such as NoWAL provide training opportunities to help you do so. Many information professionals work in a variety of areas during their careers, and you should have plenty of opportunities for development.