School of Library and Information Studies

ALA Accreditation

The MLIS program at the University of Alberta is accredited by the American Library Association (ALA) Committee on Accreditation, with the status of Continued accreditation. The next comprehensive review visit is scheduled for Spring 2020. ALA accreditation indicates that the program meets or exceeds the Standards for Accreditation of Master’s Programs in Library and Information Studies, established by the COA and approved by ALA Council. The accreditation process involves rigorous, ongoing self-evaluation by the program and verification of evidence through an external review. The COA evaluates each program for compliance with the Standards, which address systematic planning; curriculum; faculty; students; administration, finances, and resources.

Accreditation at SLIS

The School’s Bachelor of Library Science (BLS) program was first accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of the American Library Association in 1970 and thus recognized by the American and Canadian Library Associations as meeting North American library education standards. In 1976, in keeping with the Canadian pattern of education for librarianship, the two-year Master of Library Science (MLS) program was established. SLIS was then reaccredited in seven-year cycles in 1979, 1986, 1992, 1999, 2006, and 2013.

Please see the External Review Panel's Final Report here.

Please see the letter confirming continued accreditation for SLIS here.

SLIS Program Presentation

What is ALA Accreditation?

Accreditation is a voluntary system of evaluation. It is a collegial process based on self-evaluation and peer-assessment for improvement of academic quality and public accountability. Accreditation by the ALA’s Committee on Accreditation (COA) assures that master’s programs in library and information studies meet appropriate standards of quality and integrity. Visit the ALA's Accreditation FAQ page for more information.

The ALA Accreditation Process

The comprehensive review included the development of two key documents:

  • The Plan for Program Presentation (submitted April 6, 2012), which outlined the process that SLIS followed as it prepared for accreditation review, and
  • The Program Presentation (submitted January 21, 2013), an outcomes-assessment document that included information derived from ongoing self-analysis, evaluation, and assessment regarding faculty and student achievements as well as educational outcomes that demonstrate the program’s success in attaining its objectives and its continued compliance with the six (6) ALA Standards for Accreditation of Master’s Programs in Library & Information Studies.
  • Since the School's accreditation in 2013, the ALA adopted new standards in February 2015. Find out more here

Info Session: All About Accreditation 2020