LIS Practica and Special Projects

To publicize information about practicum opportunities please contact Barb Routhier (routhier@buffalo.edu) or send an announcement directly out to our UBMLS-L listserv.

A Practicum (LIS 526) is a field experience allowing MLS in Information and Library Science students to observe and practice in a real library or information center under the supervision of a practicing professional and an LIS faculty member. Practica may provide an overview of operations or concentrate on particular aspects of service.

Practicum are mainly for LIS students not seeking Library Media Specialist Certification.

Special Projects (LIS 527) are narrow, focused projects such as cataloging a collection or creating a website.

Registering for LIS 526 Practicum and/or LIS 527 Special Projects

  • Print the appropriate form.
  • Arrange for Practicum or special project by responding to the department's emailed postings of Practicum Opportunities sent through the LIS student listserv, or by contacting an informational professional of your choice directly.
  • Contact an LIS faculty member to approve the practicum project.
  • Complete form and obtain all appropriate signatures. Be sure to include the number of credit hours you wish to be registered for.
  • Submit the completed, signed form to the LIS office (534 Baldy) and it will be processed.

Completing the Practicum and/or Special Project

  • It is recommended that the student contact the faculty member during the practicum/project to discuss its progress and any problems should be brought to the attention of the faculty member.
  • It is recommended that the faculty member have an exit interview with the student to discuss and evaluate the experience or the student should provide a written evaluation of the experience.
  • At the conclusion of the practicum/project, the supervising information professional submits a written evaluation of the student's performance by mail or e-mail to the faculty member; a copy is placed in the student's file. The format of the evaluation is left to the discretion of the faculty member, but should indicate how successfully the student learned new skills and performed the practicum/project tasks.
  • The faculty member consults the evaluation when determining the final S/U grade.

Credit Hours

Entry into 526 or 527 requires completion of at least twelve credit hours toward the degree. Students may take no more than 9 credits in combination using LIS 526, 527, 598, and 599. Combinations of 526 and 527 may not exceed six credit hours. One credit hour is given for each 40 hours of field experience.