Jul 18, 2024  
2023-2024 University Bulletin 
2023-2024 University Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Master of Professional Studies

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Myriad changes in technology, along with other issues and trends over the past decade, are making it essential for library and information specialists to further their education in order to acquire the skills necessary for career opportunities and growth.

The purpose of a Dominican University Master of Professional Studies (MPS) degree is to provide library, information, knowledge, archival, and related professionals with the opportunity to:

  • Deepen their knowledge in particular areas of specialized study, and/or;
  • Undertake broader-based study in areas of interest that may cross disciplinary boundaries.

Either approach will be under the direction and approval of an SOIS faculty advisor. Students will be able to enroll in relevant courses in library information science or the multiple graduate programs supported by Dominican University and, where appropriate and with permission, pertinent graduate courses taken at other accredited institutions. The MPS degree is particularly relevant as a second professional degree for holders of American Library Association-accredited master’s degrees, holders of specialized information degrees, licensed school librarians, archivists educated in other programs, etc. Students enrolled in the MPS program may also earn certificates of advanced study in up to two cognate areas as part of their degree.

Students may choose to pursue a focused MPS (concentrating on one or two areas of LIS) or a customized program (broad-based) MPS.

The Focused MPS

A focused MPS degree has the following characteristics:

  • A core of at least five courses for each cognate area that is focused on a broad or more concentrated field or subfield of library information science (LIS), including fields/subfields shared with related disciplines. Such core courses will be drawn from graduate degree offerings in the LIS;
  • Concentration on one or two (maximum) cognate areas or subfields within LIS;
  • The possibility of taking courses on the same broad or concentrated areas of interest from other graduate programs within Dominican University or another accredited university. Such study can and often does cross disciplinary boundaries and creates a particularly coherent master’s degree program focused on aspects of one or two carefully delineated areas of interest.

Courses taken for a Dominican University SOIS certificate of advanced study (post MLIS) taken within five years of admission to the MPS program may be applied to the MPS degree. Only one such previously earned certificate of advanced study may be so applied. This exception only applies to Dominican University SOIS certificates. Up to two certificates of advanced study (one of which may have been earned previously; see above) may be earned as part of the focused Dominican University MPS degree.

Only a limited number of cognate areas are addressed by Dominican University’s certificates of advanced study. The degree offered for the focused MPS is awarded as, for example, (1) a Master of Professional Studies in library and information science’s youth literature (one cognate area) or a (2) Master of Professional Studies in library and information science’s archives and management (two cognate areas), etc. These cognate areas are simply examples and do not reflect the wide range of cognate areas that might be studied as part of the MPS degree.

The Customized Program MPS

A customized program MPS degree has the following characteristics:

  • A core of at least five courses drawn from graduate degree offerings in the School of Information Studies;
  • A variety of courses selected from offerings in the School of Information Studies, other Dominican University graduate programs, and/or (with prior permission) other accredited universities. Such courses are broadly unified through their relevance to one or more of the broad customized program of issues and concerns faced by contemporary library, information, knowledge, and archival professionals.
  • The MPS degree offered for the customized program MPS is awarded as a Master of Professional Studies in Library and Information Science. Specific cognate areas are only listed on the focused version of the MPS degree.

Additional Information

The course of study for the MPS requires approval by the student’s faculty advisor who will:

  • advise the student on selecting either the focused or customized program version of the MPS degree
  • approve the courses required for degree completion

On occasion, students may have to obtain supplemental departmental, school, or “other” university approval to take certain courses where such courses are offered by SOIS but require a prerequisite, another graduate program within Dominican University, or another university.

Requirements for All Graduate Degrees

  • Maintain a minimum of a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.
  • Complete the degree within six years.
  • Submit an application for graduation to the Office of the Registrar by the filing deadline for the semester when requirements will be completed.

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