Degree Specializations & Pathways

The iSchool offers students the opportunity to participate in various specializations and concentrations within their degrees.



The current degree specializations and concentrations are:




Program pathways are to be used as a way to guide students wishing to focus their studies in a particular area.  Librarianship is still considered the general pathway, and we offer a wide range of courses that focus on public librarianship, academic librarianship, and/or children’s literature and services. The courses outlined within each pathway is not exhaustive and students are encouraged to meet with their assigned faculty advisors with questions about course offerings.

Currently these pathways have been developed for students in the MLIS degree program:

Data Services

This pathway is designed to develop the competencies necessary to provide services related to data, which can enable the data to be used to draw conclusions or make decisions.  An important focus of this pathway is data stewardship, which involves management and maintenance of data and metadata that ensures integrity and quality.  A secondary focus is data analysis, especially the ability to summarize and visualize data to facilitate understanding and communication.  This pathway is associated with professional work in positions such as Data Librarian, Data Curator, Research Data Manager, Data Steward, Data Scientist, Social Media Manager.

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Information Interaction and Design

The focus of this pathway will be on the development of knowledge and skills related to the ways in which humans search for and interact with information and media, and the design of social and technological systems to support those interactions.  This pathway is associated with professional work in fields such as information architecture, web design, information services, instructional design, usability testing and user-centred design.  It is associated with academic research in the fields of information behaviour, human-computer interaction, Internet research, media studies, knowledge organization and design.

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Community and Culture

The focus of this pathway will be on the development of knowledge and skills related to the collection and stewardship of cultural materials and the provision of information and cultural services to communities that support and are respectful of their needs, traditions and ways of knowing.  This pathway is associated with professional work related to community librarianship, community archives, community outreach, cultural heritage preservation and education, digitization and digital curation projects, and information policy.  It is associated with academic research in the fields of community informatics, First Nations studies, LGBTQ studies, social justice librarianship, information policy, museum studies, etc.

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This pathway is complementary to the First Nations Curriculum Concentration.



This outlines the generalist librarianship pathway as well as the specialized areas within it.  It serves a wide range of library-focused careers and is complementary to all other MLIS pathways.

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