Experiential learning is a cornerstone of our degree programs. Field experience, practicum, and our Partners Program are all available to you.


The Partners Program

The Partners Program provides on-campus Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) students with the opportunity to pursue their education while gaining related work experience in Pittsburgh-area libraries, archives, information centers, and cultural institutions. The Partners Program allows students to experience the work environment of information professionals and to add this learning opportunity to their resume.

The recruitment process begins in early spring upon receipt of a student’s application to the Partners Program; Placement is coordinated by staff. The work commitment for the Partners Program is 10-15 hours per week. Each placement is for three terms; therefore, you will gain a significant amount of experience before entering the job market. To be eligible to participate in the Partners Program, students must be full-time or part-time, on-campus MLIS students who are U.S. Citizens.

Field Experience

A field experience (3 credits/150 hours of supervised professional work in an approved information environment) is recommended, especially if you lack professional experience. Placement positions allow students the opportunity to apply their learning to a practical work experience. Placements are available in corporate libraries, medical libraries, legal libraries, academic libraries, public libraries, archives, as well as other organizations.

Practicum

As part of the SLCP specialization, students are required to complete a practicum experience in a school library under the supervision of a cooperating teacher librarian working collaboratively with teachers, teaching information literacy skills, providing services to students and teachers, and managing resources.

Other ways to get experience

The School of Computing and Information has relationships with local institutions that are seeking students for part-time, project-based, or volunteer positions. We collect this information in a directory and make it available to students, encouraging them to contact the institutions directly. To see the full list of these opportunities, students must log-in to the Intranet.