MBA/MLIS Combined Program

In this inter-faculty joint degree program, students may complete the Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS) degree in conjunction with the Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. This program typically extends over three years of full-time study. For more information on the MBA program see the Alberta School of Business.

This combined program is taught on-campus at the University of Alberta. 

Entry Routes

To take the MBA/MLIS combined program students must satisfy the entrance requirements for both programs. Prospective students apply in one of two ways: 

  1. Apply directly to the MBA/MLIS program (students will complete one application form).
  2. Apply during and up to the completion of the first year in their on-campus MLIS program. 

Application dates and deadlines may vary depending on your entry route. Refer to the MBA program for their most up to date application deadlines. Please note that admissions to the MBA program are completed on a rolling basis, and it is strongly recommended to apply early. 

Program Requirements

The MBA/MLIS program requires 81 credits (★81) for completion:

  • ★45 from the MBA program
    • ★30 in core courses
    • ★15 in electives + capping course
  • ★36 from the MLIS program
    • ★18 in required courses (core + IT)
    • ★18 in elective courses 

All students enrolled in the MBA/MLIS combined program will take each program's respective required courses (except LIS 504). The majority of courses in both programs are three credits (★3) each. 

Required Courses 

Required MLIS Courses

All students will take the following required MLIS courses

  • LIS 501– Foundations of Library and Information Studies 
  • LIS 502 – Organization of Information
  • LIS 503 – Reference and Information Services
  • LIS 505 – Introduction to Research
  • Two (2)  LIS Information Technology (IT) courses

In lieu of the required MLIS management course LIS 504, students enrolled in the MBA/MLIS combined program will take required MBA management courses (BUS 505, SEM 500, SEM 652, MGTSC 501).

Required MBA Courses

All students will take the following required MBA core courses in Year Two of the MBA/MLIS.

  • ACCTG 501 – Introduction to Financial Reporting and Analysis
  • ACCTG 523 – Accounting Information and Internal Decision Making
  • BUEC 503 – Economic Foundations
  • BUS 505 – Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility
  • FIN 501 – Managerial Finance
  • MARK 502 – Principles of Marketing Management
  • MGTSC 501 – Data Analysis and Decision Making
  • SEM 500 – Managing People
  • SEM 652 – Leadership Skills
  • One of:
    • BUEC 542 – International Business
    • BUEC 646 – The Global Business Environment
    • OM 502 – Operations Management
    • SEM 502 – Organization Strategy/Managing Organizations

Students will also take the following at the beginning of the MBA program: 

  • BUS 501 – Business Skills Orientation (★0)
  • BUS 504 – Career Management Skills (★0)

MBA students are required to take the capping exercise course SEM 641 – Business Strategy in Year Three of the program. 

Typical Program Course Structure 

Year One – ★24 MLIS

  • ★12 in LIS required courses (LIS 501, LIS 502, LIS 503, LIS 505)
  • Up to ★6 in required Information Technology (IT) courses
  • Up to ★6 in LIS Core Electives (IT or non-IT)

Year Two – ★30 MBA

  • ★30 MBA required core course

Year Three – ★27 MBA/MLIS

  • ★15 MBA
    • SEM 641
    • Four MBA electives
  • ★12 MLIS (LIS electives and up to one designated Information Technology courses)

Other Information

Advisors + Supervisors
At the time of admission, each student is assigned a Program Advisor from both the School of Library and Information Studies and the Alberta School of Business who will each provide advice and counselling in adapting the combined MBA/MLIS program to match career goals and objectives. Students should also consult the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research Graduate Program Manual, the University Calendar, and the Alberta School of Business for additional information.
Ethics + Academic Citizenship Requirement

The Ethics and Academic Citizenship Requirement, which replaces the Academic Integrity and Ethics Training requirement, provides foundational ethics education for all graduate students. The requirement for masters students consists of one zero-credit, self-paced online course: INT D 710: Ethics and Academic Citizenship.

There is no additional tuition or fees for the course, and it does not impact full-time or part-time status. 

Timelines for Completion

The timeline for completion of the Ethics and Academic Citizenship Requirement will depend on several factors, including when the student began their program and when they expect to complete their program. See the requirement flowchart for more information. 

Time Limits for Completion
A full-time student who is registered for the combined MBA/MLIS program normally will be able to complete the degree requirements in three years. Students may undertake the combined program on a part-time basis. The duration of the total program must not exceed six consecutive calendar years.