GSLIS, FTRF announce intellectual freedom course and scholarship opportunities

Posted: March 29, 2016

GSLIS and the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) are pleased to announce a partnership to offer an online graduate-level course on intellectual freedom for library and information science (LIS) students around the country. The course, in its third year, will be taught by GSLIS Assistant Professor Emily Knox, who was awarded a 2015 Instructor of the Year award by the Web-based Information Science Education (WISE) consortium for the course. It is a project of the Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund.

“Intellectual Freedom and Censorship” is a two-credit course that will meet online Tuesdays August 23-October 11, 2016. It is open to any student enrolled in an LIS degree program. As part of the collaboration, FTRF staff and volunteers will lend their expertise as guest speakers, and FTRF and ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) archival materials will be made available to students.

“Our culture is at a tipping point, a shift in its tolerance for the First Amendment. It is imperative that today’s library students have a deep and thoughtful exposure to the value of free speech. And who better to receive it from than the 2015 WISE instructor of the year?” said James LaRue (MS '81), director of OIF and FTRF.

“I’m excited to teach the intellectual freedom and censorship class again this Fall,” said Knox. “The course is one of the highlights of my semester. I, like the students, enjoy listening and learning from our weekly speakers and I love our spirited class discussions.”

To encourage students outside the University of Illinois to participate, FTRF is offering four half-scholarships ($700 each). Applications for the scholarships are due May 2, 2016.

Students enrolled in programs affiliated with the WISE consortium will be provided course credit automatically upon completion of the course. Others will need to coordinate course credit with their home institution.

For more information and questions regarding registration, contact Karla Lucht, graduate studies advisor at GSLIS, klucht [at] (by email) or at (217) 244-3810, or contact staff at the Freedom to Read Foundation at FTRF [at] or (312) 280-4226.

Filed Under: Education of Information Professionals, Information Access, school news, intellectual freedom