MS in Information and Library Science and Master of Music (MS/MA)

A Program in Music Librarianship

The job market is excellent for well-prepared music librarians. The best prepared individuals have two master's degrees: one in Music with a concentration in Music History or Music Theory and the other in Library and Information Studies. Thorough preparation also demands first-hand experience of both practical and theoretical matters in the real-world setting of a functioning music library.

Founded in 1979, the program at the University at Buffalo provides such preparation. It is rigorous and requires a minimum of four semesters and three summer sessions for its completion; there are no academic shortcuts in the program. There is some flexibility, however, for students to enhance their qualifications through individually designed projects and studies.

The University at Buffalo has a strong tradition of providing excellent preparation for careers in music librarianship through a collaborative agreement between the Department of Library and Information Studies and the Department of Music. Students have the opportunity to apply for simultaneous enrollment in graduate programs in the MA in Music History program and the MS in Information and Library Science program. Credits may not be shared (i.e., “double counted”) between programs.

Two online Music Librarianship courses are offered by the Department of Library and Information Studies. Students in the MS in Information and Library Science program may take up to 6 credits of graduate-level music courses and count these towards their MS degree. Professional librarians may take these courses for credit as non-matriculated students.

Admissions and Requirements

  • Students apply separately for admission to the Music Department and the Department of Library and Information Studies. Students should indicate their intent to pursue both degrees during the application process.
  • Students will receive advisement from each department.
  • Students considering a career in an academic library are encouraged to complete a MA thesis.
  • All students are encouraged to gain practical experience through a practicum, special project, or employment. The Music Library frequently employs graduate students enrolled in the MLS/MA degree programs.


For general information about the program or Music Librarianship as a career, contact:

Brenda L. Battleson White, PhD
University at Buffalo
Department of Library and Information Studies
545 Baldy Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260-4750
Telephone: 716-645-1486

LIS admissions requirements

For more information about applying, contact Ms. Pat Glinski in the Admissions Office:

Office of Graduate Admissions & Student Services
Graduate School of Education
University at Buffalo
366 Baldy Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260
Telephone: (716) 645-2110
Fax: (716) 645-7937