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Admissions Requirements for MLS Degree Program

General Requirements (for all applicants)

Our MLS in Information and Library Science degree program features flexible options that offer (1) both fall and spring admission, and (2) programs online, in a seated environment, or through a mixture of both.

Want to know more about the program prior to applying? Watch one of our MLS Information Sessions!

The applicant should have received an undergraduate bachelor degree with a GPA of 3.0 or better by the intended beginning semester. Applications with lower GPA’s may still be considered and granted a “conditional admission” (see below for more information). To apply for admission to the MLS in Information and Library Science or MLS in School Library Media program, please submit the following materials by the deadline:

  • A completed online application.
  • Unofficial transcripts from each institution that you have attended. Applicants who are currently at UB or have studied at or graduated from UB do not need to submit an official UB transcript.
  • Three letters of recommendation. If you have graduated within the past 5 years, you must submit two academic references (professor) and one professional reference.
  • Statement of Education and Career Goals. Please write a detailed statement describing your reasons for pursuing a graduate degree in the information and library studies field. Include your professional goals and objectives and indicate any area of special interest within the field.
  • Application fee of $50.00 submitted either electronically with your application

Application Deadlines

Admission is rolling.

Application requirements for international applicants

In addition to the requirements noted above, international applicants should submit the following:

  • ALL transcripts / mark sheets and completed degrees / diplomas for ALL post-secondary schools attended;
  • GRE score report (no more than five years old): UB institution code is 2925 - GRE departmental code is 4701.
  • TOEFL or IELTS score report (must not be more than two years old from the time you begin classes. The required minimum TOEFL score is a 213 for a computer based test, 550 for a paper based test and 79 Internet based test. The required minimum IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score is 6.5 overall with no individual sub-score below 6.0.
  • A copy of your passport biographical page.
  • Financial documentation as outlined by the University at Buffalo Graduate School; international graduate applicants must document their ability to pay for all costs incurred while studying in the U.S.
  • An official bank statement translated into U.S. dollars

All financial forms and supporting documentation must uploaded to your application with required signatures, and must be dated within one year of the time the applicant intends to enroll at UB. No action will be taken on dossiers of applicants who indicate no financial support.
More information about cost of attendance as an International Student at UB.

For additional general information on international admissions see:

Conditional Admit/Provisional Status

A student may be admitted provisionally to the MLS in Information and Library Science when s/he does not meet all admissions requirements (most often because of an undergraduate GPA below 3.0) but his or her personal statements, transcripts, employment history, and letters of reference demonstrate potential for success. At the end of the semester in which the student has attempted 12 credit hours in the program, the student’s academic standing will be reviewed by a member of the LIS staff.

At the time of the review, if the student meets all the conditions of good academic standing and has no Incomplete or Unsatisfactory grades, provisional status is automatically lifted and the student is considered to be in Good Academic Standing.

Applicants to the SLM program will not be admitted with a GPA below 3.0, UNLESS they already have another master’s degree. Applicants with a low GPA who would like to take the SLM program may apply for conditional admission to the MLS program. Following completion of 12 credits and a GPA of 3.0, a student may apply to be in the SLM program. This provides students to undertake graduate work and test their success.

See the LIS Academic Regulations for more details.

Special Notes

  • Online/Seated option: when filing your online application, please be sure to indicate whether you’re interested in completing the MLS in Information and Library Science program online or in a seated setting. Information of the online or seated option of the MLS in Information and Library Science program can be found on our Academic Program page.
  • Former/Maiden Name: Please be sure to provide us with your former/maiden name if you have one. When requesting transcripts, please ask the sending institution to indicate your current name and former/maiden name.
  • English Language preparation (international students only): International students are strongly encouraged to attend the six-week summer intensive English language program before enrolling in MLS courses. For more information, please visit the Intensive English Language Institute (IELI).

Admissions Requirements for Advanced Certificate

You must have a master's degree in LIS or in a related field. You will also be asked to come for an admission interview to review your program objectives. Current MLS students need not supply transcripts or letters of reference.

The link to apply online can be found on this page.

Please visit the advanced certificate page for more information.

Admissions Requirements for Non-Matriculated Students

Individuals not formally accepted into the MLS in Information and Library Science or the Advanced Studies Certificate Program, but taking coursework at LIS, may be admitted as Non-Degree Students. If a Non-Degree Student is later admitted into the MLS degree program, a maximum of 6 credit hours of non-matriculating courses may be transferred.

A new online Non-Degree Student application form must be completed each semester.

Please visit our non-matriculated page for more information.