Information & Library Science

All programs require that you submit your application online.

In the IU Bloomington Graduate Admissions Application system, you will first select an Academic Program. The Department of Information and Library Science programs are listed as follows:

  • Information and Library Science Graduate
  • Information and Library Science Nondegree
  • Information and Library Science Ph.D.

The next step will be to select an Academic Plan – (such as MIS or MLS) The GCIA (Graduate Certificate in Information Architecture) is listed under Information and Library Science Nondegree.

Please note that the I.U. online application has general information for all departments. You need to review the ILS-specific admissions criteria on the ILS website.

If you need to submit additional materials by mail, send them to the appropriate address below. (International applicants should submit materials to these addresses, not to the Office of International Admissions.)

Information & Library Science Degrees
ILS Admissions
Department of Information and Library Science
Indiana University
1320 East 10th Street, LI 011
Bloomington, IN 47405-3907


We admit students with a wide variety of academic backgrounds. Every academic discipline is being influenced by our field. Academic diversity among our students and faculty has led to creativity and innovation.

You do need to have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. You do need a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) in your undergraduate studies, and a minimum of 3.2 in your graduate degree work (if any). If you do not have this GPA, you can submit GRE (or GMAT) scores - and an additional statement regarding your academic record.


Reference Letters need to be from professors or employers who are familiar with your abilities and can estimate how well you would do in a rigorous graduate program. Three reference letters are needed. Letters from professors who are familiar with your academic skills are preferred. Letters from employers and professionals who are familiar with your abilities and work habits are also acceptable. We will take letters in any format, as long as contact information is included. Letters may be submitted by recommenders using the online application system. Letters on letterhead or letters that are sealed (with a signature over the seal) are also acceptable.

We will accept letters by mail, email (, or fax (812) 855-6166 that include contact information. Reference letters can be sent prior to application, and will be held in a preliminary file. Students may check with the ILS office to confirm receipt of application items.

If the recommender is not fluent in English, they should submit a letter in their language - plus a translation. Brief forms are not adequate for this admissions requirement.


GRE or GMAT scores are not required, except:

  • if your undergraduate GPA was below 3.0
  • if your previous graduate GPA was below 3.2
  • if your first language is not English, the TOEFL will also be required.
  • if you want to make your application especially competitive for financial aid and admissions
Personal Goals Essay

Personal Goals Essays are important. They need to be a minimum of 500 words in length, and should describe your academic and professional goals. Professional jobs in the field of library and information science value leadership, teamwork, creativity, and the ability to work with people. For your essay, think about why you want to come to graduate school in this field. Your writing skills demonstrated in this statement are also considered as part of the admission decision. Essays should be in your own words, and written with academic integrity.


Transcripts from every previous college (U.S. and international) attended should be sent directly from the institution to the Department of Information and Library Science. If you attended Indiana University, we can print that transcript. You do not have to send IU transcripts.

If you would like to provide supplemental information about your college or about your academic record, you may send an email directly to the ILS Admissions Director (  You need to have the equivalent to a four-year US Bachelor’s degree from an accredited school to be eligible for admissions. Students enrolled in their Bachelor’s degree can still apply – but, a final transcript showing the degree granted will need to be sent upon completion.

If you completed less than 15 hours from a school, and if those courses are reflected on a final undergraduate transcript, you are not required to send that transcript.

Transcripts can be received before you apply.

International Applicants

International students, and students whose first language is not English, are required to take the TOEFL and GRE (or GMAT) tests. In addition, all international students and students whose first language is not English, are required to take the IU English Proficiency Test to determine if any additional English coursework is needed. The test is given during the international orientation period offered before classes begin by the IU International Center.

TOEFL minimum 100 (or 600 - paper test) IU's institutional code is 1324; the IU departmental code is 99. The ILS code is 90.
GRE - minimum V = 500, Q = 500, A = 4.5 or GMAT - minimum 31 in each area; the IU institutional code is 1324, the ILS Library Science code is 4701, the ILS Information Science code is 0404.

If your first language is not English, but you have completed a bachelor's degree in the US, you can petition the ILS Director of Admissions to waive the TOEFL, GRE or GMAT tests.

joint degree programs

ILS offers a number of dual-degree programs with other units. When applying to a dual-degree program, you need to submit separate applications to each department. The admissions processing for each area is handled separately. Students would follow the same process for pursuing concurrent, but separate, master's degrees at IU.

For ILS specializations or certifications, application items are sent directly to ILS for initial processing. For the ILS dual MIS/MLS, you need to address your professional and academic goals for both degrees in your "Personal Goals Essay".


Applications are processed on a rolling basis. Priority deadlines for students not applying for ILS financial aid packages are May 15 for the fall semester, November 1 for the spring semester, and March 15 to begin the second summer session. We do accept applications beyond these dates. Students are admitted to ILS for the fall, spring, and second summer sessions.

International students should allow a minimum of six months processing prior to their anticipated start date. The priority deadline for summer or fall admission is December 1. International applications should be submitted to the IU Office of International Admissions - that office then routes the application to ILS.

financial aid deadlines

January 15 is the deadline to apply for ILS Financial Aid packages. Students must have a completed application with ILS by this date. International students should allow eight weeks of processing time (or more) with the IU Office of International Admissions. About 30% of our students receive ILS aid packages. These merit-based packages are highly competitive.

Loans are a separate process handled by the IU Office of Student Financial Assistance. Students are encouraged, if possible, to keep loans to a minimum.

Can I take courses as a Non-Degree student?

You can register as a ILS Graduate Non-Degree student and take up to six credit hours of graduate coursework - prior to admission - that, if admitted, would count towards your degree. Contact our ILS Admissions Office for details.