Information Organization Concentration
Preparing students for careers in cataloging, indexing, metadata work, or archival organization in a wide variety of settings, including libraries, archives, museums, private corporations, government agencies, and other organizations; the Information Organization (IO) Concentration provides a way for students to formally focus their studies on information organization within the context their MLIS degree program and its requirements. The Concentration includes a mixture of theoretical and practical knowledge and skills, and will be posted on a student's transcript upon degree conferral. (Students should be aware that while the term "information organization" is not widely recognized and does not signify preparation for a specific career path, it serves as a useful umbrella term to encompass theories, principles, and practices that may be applied in a variety of specific fields and careers in which information needs to be organized.)
- Metadata Librarian
- Metadata Specialist
- Digital Asset Manager
- Information Architect
Questions?For questions, please contact
IO Concentration Coordinator
The Information Organization Concentration requires a minimum of 15 credits of coursework taken from the list of qualifying elective courses below. The prerequisite for all qualifying courses is 511 Organization of Information, required of all MLIS students and which does not count towards the 15 credits required for the concentration.
The student’s concentration program must be approved by the SOIS Information Organization Concentration Coordinator.
A minimum grade of “B” (3.00 grade points) is required in all SOIS courses applied toward the concentration.
A fieldwork of 1-3 credits with a focus on information organization is strongly recommended for students without practical experience. A maximum of 3 credits of fieldwork may be applied towards the Concentration.
A maximum of 6 transfer credits from an institution other than UWM may count toward the concentration, subject to Graduate School transfer policy. UWM graduate coursework taken prior to admission to the current degree program is subject to standard transfer limits. Any transfer credits applied toward a concentration are part of the total transfer limit for that degree.
A student may not earn a concentration and a certificate based on identical coursework.
In order to enter the Concentration, a student must submit a "Declaration of Intent" form (see above) to the IO Concentration Coordinator. The student will then be entered into the Concentrator database, have IO coursework progress and grades verified, and have the necessary paperwork processed for the transcript designation.
- The form should be submitted as early as possible after completing the 511 core course, but it must be submitted no later than the beginning of the student's final semester in the MLIS program.
- Simply indicating an interest in the IO Concentration at the time of MLIS application or elsewhere is not a substitute for submitting the required Declaration form and does not enter a student into the transcript-designated concentration.
- Students must take a minimum of 15 credits from the list of qualifying elective courses below. These courses are taken within the overall MLIS program in addition to the required core course (511).
- 711 is the basic, introductory course for cataloging and classification.
- Students interested in pursuing cataloging in greater depth, especially those interested in a career in cataloging, should, after completing 711, go on to take either or preferably both of the two complementary advanced cataloging courses: 712 Resource Description for Library Catalogs and/or 713 Subject Analysis in Library Catalogs.
- Additional advanced cataloging courses include Music Cataloging and Electronic and Media Resources Cataloging.
- Please see the list of courses with their prerequisites below.
- Note: The SOIS cataloging curriculum has undergone development and several changes within the past few years. The information on this page with regard to 711, 712, and 713 applies to all students beginning their cataloging course work as of the Spring 2013 semester. Prior to that time, students needed to take either (a) 711 or (b) 712 and/or 713, but were not to take both (a) and (b). 712 and 713 were offered under the generic 791 course number prior to the Spring 2013 semester. The coverage within these three courses has been changed somewhat since that time, such that 711 is the prerequisite for 712 and 713 as of January 2013. IO Concentrators should contact the IO Concentration Coordinator to discuss their cataloging course options if they took any cataloging courses prior to January 2013, so as to avoid potential confusion because of these changes.
- Fieldwork with a focus on information organization is very strongly recommended for those without practical IO experience, but it is not absolutely required.
- Practical experience is an critical component of preparation for a professional career. Such experience in the form of a fieldwork will count for a great deal when applying for jobs.
- Students may ask any SOIS IO faculty member to be their fieldwork faculty advisor.
- Regardless of the faculty advisor, students must also have their fieldwork placement approved by the IO Concentration Coordinator in advance.
- Fieldwork should generally be done later in a student's program, after relevant elective courses have been completed (e.g., completion of 711 before beginning a fieldwork in cataloging.)
- Fieldwork may be taken for 1, 2, or 3 credits during any one semester.
- A maximum of 3 credits of fieldwork may be included as part of the 15 credits of electives for the concentration (an additional 3 credits may count toward the MLIS, but not toward the concentration).
- Waiving fieldwork does not reduce the required 15 elective credits for the concentration.
- 511 Organization of Information (required for the MLIS and for all IO elective courses; does not count as one of the required 15 credits of IO electives).
Qualifying Elective Courses
Students must take 15 credits, which is typically five courses, from the following list. 1-3 credits of 990 or 759 fieldwork are required as part of the 15 credits, unless waived. If the fieldwork requirement is waived, the student must still complete 15 credits of IO elective coursework.
- 582 Data Science
- 619 Topics in Information Organization: (Subtitled). (Effective 01/22/2013) 1-3 credits. Undergraduate/Graduate. Study of particular topics in Information Organization. Specific topics announced in Schedule of Classes each time course is offered. May be repeated with change in topic to 9 credits maximum.
- 711 Introduction to Cataloging and Classification
- 712 Resource Description for Library Catalogs (Prerequisite: 711)
- 713 Subject Analysis in Library Catalogs (Prerequisite: 711)
- 714 Metadata
- 715 Music Cataloging
- 716 Thesaurus Construction
- 717 Information Architecture
- 750 Arrangement and Description in Archives (Prerequisite: 650)
- 719 Advanced Topics in Information Organization: (Subtitled). [Formerly 791.] Advanced study of a particular topic in Information Organization. May be repeated with change in topic to 9 credits maximum. Offerings may include:
- Linked Data, Mashups, the Semantic Web, and Web 2.0
- RDF and Ontologies for the Semantic Web
- Cross-cultural Issues in Organization of Information
- New IO courses are first taught under the generic 619 Topics or 719 Advanced Topics number. After 3 or more offerings, many become established with their own unique course number.
- 898 Master's Thesis (on an IO topic, directed by an IO faculty member)
- 990 Fieldwork in Library and Information Science Services (with a focus on information organization) (Prerequisites: all MLIS core courses and relevant IO elective courses)
759 Fieldwork in Archives and Manuscripts (with a focus on information organization)
Related Courses (recommended, but not counted toward the concentration)
- 682 Digital Libraries
- 780 XML for Libraries
- 787 Library Automation
- 788 Information Systems: Analysis and Design
Other Graduate Degree Concentrations/Specializations
Archival Studies Concentration (transcript designated)
Information Organization Concentration (transcript designated)
Information Technology Concentration (transcript designated)
Public Library Concentration (transcript designated)
Public Libraries - Children/Adult Services
Information Law, Policy & Ethics