MLIS Thesis Option Guidelines

Thesis Coursework

Students choosing the thesis option must take at least three credits of thesis coursework in addition to the 36 credits required for the proficiency examination option, making the minimum credits required for the thesis option 39 credits. However, only 3 credits of thesis coursework may count towards the total degree credit requirement of 39.

Dual Degree Program Requirement

Students who choose the thesis option in the dual master's degree programs also need to take an additional 3 credits of thesis coursework. Total degree credits vary among the dual master's programs. The MLIS component of each requires 33 credits of SOIS coursework three of which would be taken as thesis credit. Students pursuing thesis options in both programs will be required to fulfill each program's thesis requirement.

Research Methods Credit Requirement

Students in the thesis option also must take a minimum of three credits of research methods beyond INFOST 591. More may be required by individual circumstances, but only the first three credits may count toward degree credit requirements. Either INFOST 890, Advanced Research Methods in Information Studies, or a comparable course chosen in consultation with the major professor, can contribute towards satisfaction of this requirement.

Students must complete the 4 core courses in addition to the research methods requirement before defense of the thesis proposal can occur. Students must register for a variable credit thesis research course: INFOST 898, Master's Thesis, 1-3 credits, during every semester of thesis work. No more than three credits of INFOST 898 may be counted towards the degree.

Declare Thesis Option Early!

Students may select the thesis option at any point in their course of study, but are encouraged to make this decision and form their thesis committee as early as possible to avoid the necessity of taking additional coursework. Likewise, a student may withdraw from the thesis option and pursue the proficiency examination option; however, the student would need to meet registration and other requirements for the proficiency examination set forth in the SOIS policies and procedures.

Students must pass an oral examination in defense of the thesis. 

The thesis defense may be repeated once.


Master's Thesis Checklist

UWM Graduate School Thesis and Dissertation Formatting:

UWM Graduate School - Thesis/Dissertation Defense Deadlines: