The UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) partners with several other UNC-Chapel Hill schools, as well as North Carolina State University, to offer students the opportunity to pursue two degrees simultaneously. Many students find this approach offers the knowledge, skills, and integrated perspective needed to become competitive candidates and leading professionals in their targeted field.
The goal of the dual degree program is to maximize learning, minimize course and content overlap, and provide students with a means to earn two degrees as efficiently as possible while maintaining the integrity and high standards of each degree. Students can expect to complete both degrees in three academic years.
Dual Degree Options
MAH (Master in Art History) from the UNC Department of Art
This program draws on the shared interests of librarians and art historians in areas such as the preservation and documentation of works, the management and development of art collections, and the indexing, abstracting, and classification of these collections. As museums and galleries move toward digital repositories and expanded online access, art institutions are also looking for individuals who are cognizant of the correct use of newly emerging technologies in information and library science, while also understanding the peculiar challenges and opportunities offered by working in the field of art and art history.
MPA (Master in Public Administration) from the UNC School of Government
The stewardship of public information is a fundamental responsibility of a democratic society. Public information (e.g. agency records, government publications, datasets) serves as evidence of governmental activities, decisions, and responsibilities as well as of legal contracts at the local, county, state, and federal levels. Providing appropriate access to public information promotes accountability, rights of citizens, effective administration of policy, and social memory.
Archivists, records managers, librarians and other information professionals are often directly charged with ensuring that public information is accessible and meaningful over time. However, the distributed nature of both government and modern information systems places responsibility for the stewardship of public information into the hands of many other professionals, including those who develop, implement, and interpret public policies.
The MSIS/MSLS and MPA dual degree program integrates policy development, issues of legal compliance, and extensive knowledge of government structures and information with principles, values, methods, and technologies of the information professions.
Master of Health Care Administration (MHA):
Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA) within the Department of Health Policy and Management (HPM)
Professionals who understand the implications and potential for personal health information collection, electronics health records management, and other health informatics applications, as well as the needs of various patient and practitioner populations, will be eminently qualified to help humanity achieve high quality, accessible, and affordable health systems.
Issues such as public access to information, ownership of information, an individual's control over personal information, or an institution's reliance on information systems to accurately gather and analyze data all require critical legal analysis and knowledge of information systems and usage. Professionals with degrees in law and library science are employed in law schools, law firms, federal, state, and local courts, government agencies, and corporations.
80 credit hours for the Juris Doctor Degree and 48 credits for the MSLS or MSIS.
12 of the 80 credits required for the JD will count towards both the JD and the MSLS or the MSIS
9 of the 48 credit hours required for the MSLS or MSIS will count towards the MSLS or the MSIS and the JD
Students interested in the dual degree between SILS and the School of Law must apply to both during the same application term. If admitted to both, students must start in the law school due to the requirements of the Bar. The first year will begin in the law school and the second year will be in SILS. Years three and four will be blended between SILS and the School of Law.
Possession of both the law degree and the library science degree is a common requirement for entry-level positions in academic law libraries and both degrees are essential for advancement in the profession. Larger law firms are increasingly requiring that their librarians have a law degree plus an MSLS.
MA (Master of Arts in Public History) from the NCSU Department of History
Today's marketplace frequently demands that archivists, manuscript curators, and records managers have both historical knowledge and advanced information management skills. Neither a master's degree in history nor one in information and library science is ideal, by itself, to prepare the new archival workforce that must be able to appraise and describe historical records, create websites, and preserve electronic documents. To meet the needs of the archival profession, SILS, in conjunction with the Public History program at the North Carolina State University (NCSU) have established the cooperative degree program.
- Students must apply, be admitted, and accept admission to each graduate program at the same time and abide by all program requirements. It's best that individuals identify their interest in a dual degree program prior to applying to UNC. Students who decide they want to pursue dual degrees after enrolling in their first semester at SILS should apply for admission to the other program, informing the registrar and the coordinators of both programs at the time of application.
- Once students are accepted and admitted, they may enroll both programs. Students will be “term-activated” each semester for the program in which they take the majority of their classes, and their tuition will be based on the department or school in which they are “term-activated.”
- Dual degree students can “double count” a certain percentage of their classes from one program to the other. The number of credit hours can vary from program to program, but all programs are designed to enable students to finish both degrees in three years.