MLIS Track: School Library Media

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The School Library Media program is an optional track within the 36-credit hour MLIS program, enabling students to earn the MLIS degree while qualifying for School Library Media Certification in Rhode Island and other states in the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement (including Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont.)

This program is accredited by American Library Association (ALA), the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP), and certified by the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE).

School Library Media Certification Reciprocity

The following regions are members of the Northeast Jurisdiction of the NASDTEC agreement and offer reciprocity with Rhode Island state approved educator preparation programs and/or current, unrestricted licenses in RI in K-12 library media.

Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ontario, Pennsylvania, and Vermont.

If you plan on working in any of these states, you will have to complete any additional requirements of that state. It is the applicant’s responsibility to determine any additional requirements. Applying for certification in another state is always easier if you hold an existing license from the state that approved your educator preparation program.

If you plan on applying for certification in a state outside of the Northeast Jurisdiction of the NASDTEC agreement, URI cannot guarantee reciprocity so this program may not be for you.


Core Courses

  • LSC 502 (3 credits) Lead, Manage, & Connect Lib Services
  • LSC 503 (3 credits) Collection Management
  • LSC 504 (3 credits) Searching for Answers; Meeting Users’ Information Needs
  • LSC 508 (3 credits) Introduction to Information Science and Technology
  • LSC 596 (3 credits, taken 3 times for a total of 9 credits) School Library Media Internship and Seminar


  • LSC 520 (3 credits) School Library Media Services
  • LSC 527 (3 credits) Planning and Developing Library Instruction

Focus on Children and Youth (Select 2 from the list)

  • LSC 513 (3 credits) Social Justice in Children’s and Young Adult Literature
  • LSC 530 (3 credits) Children’s Materials and Services
  • LSC 531 (3 credits) Young Adult Materials and Services


  • 3 credits from MLIS electives or career-related courses in other online accelerated graduate programs with the approval of your advisor and program.

Total = 36 credits

Timeline to Complete SLM Track

Due to the student teaching requirement, students are not able to complete the MLIS program with a specialization in school library media in one calendar year, even if going full time.

The timeline to complete the program as a full time student depends on the enrollment semester.

Enrollment SemesterEst. Number of Semesters to Complete Full-Time (1-2 Courses Each Session)
(No full-time option available due to course rotation and requirements. Students take 1 course each session)

Optional Tracks

Student may choose to specialize in an area of interest. Tracks will have additional required courses and specific electives from which students can choose. Visit each track page to learn more.

School Library Media

Digital Media

Libraries, Leadership,
and Transforming Communities

Information Equity, Diverse Communities,
and Critical Librarianship

Practicum and Student Teaching

The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) requires 420 hours or the equivalent of student teaching experience in the school library. Sixty hours of field experience are also completed over the course of several required classes prior to student teaching.

Students will confer with their advisor to select student teaching placement sites convenient to their location in the spring prior to student teaching.

Practicum Mentors. If you are a School Library Media Specialist with at least three years experience and are interested in being a practicum mentor, please email Mary Moen, at

Teacher Certification Program

For individuals who already have an MLIS from an accredited institution and want to be a school librarian, GSLIS offers a Teacher Certification Program (TCP) with a specialization in School Library Media. In the TCP, students complete the additional requirements of the SLM degree for RI Department of Education certification. The number of courses needed to complete the TCP will vary depending upon a transcript analysis. 

School Library Media TCP candidates must follow the same guidelines and application process as for the MLIS degree program. Upon acceptance, students will become a provisional school library media candidate.  Students admitted into the TCP are governed by the same academic standards as other GSLIS matriculated graduate students.

PRAXIS Test Requirements

Students who plan on getting their certification in Rhode Island must follow the RI Department of Education (RIDE) qualifications for certification. One qualification is to pass the PRAXIS School Librarian test #5312. Students must take the test prior to the start of student teaching. If students do not earn the passing score, they may continue in the program but will have to pass it prior to applying for RI certification.

Out of state students: Students who plan on applying for certification in another state need to check that state’s testing requirements and take them prior to student teaching. See certification reciprocity below.

Get in touch.

URI Online Student Support Center


Program Director

Dr. Lauren Mandel
Associate Professor, Director
Graduate School of Library and Information Studies
Meet Dr. Lauren Mandel