CAS School Librarian Licensure Program

A flexible way to pursue your professional path

If you have a master's degree in library and information science and want to gain greater specialization as a school librarian, the iSchool has the program and people to make it happen. Our advisors will guide you through the process, our faculty will provide expertise and inspire your work, and our program will prepare you to earn an Illinois Professional Educator License (PEL) with a special PreK-12 LIS endorsement.

How do school librarians make a difference?

  • Empower youth as learners, creators, and knowledge experts
  • Build community and instructional partnerships
  • Integrate digital tools to support transformational learning
  • Ensure equitable access to educational resources for all students
  • Engage youth as participatory global and digital citizens
Kristy Rieger K-12

Halfway through my initial degree, I took a personal break to refocus and assess what I needed in my career. When I decided to rejoin the program and change to the CAS School Librarian Licensure path, the School's advisors listened to my personal challenges and made it work for me. This program truly wants to help students on AND off campus.

Kirsty Rieger (MS '14), Library/Information Specialist, Highcrest Middle School

What courses will I need?

The CAS program for School Librarian Licensure requires 16 hours of approved LIS coursework and 16 hours of required education courses, which includes both Early Field Experience (Practicum) and student teaching placements in school libraries.  Following the completion of 32 semester hours of graduate-level coursework, you will complete the CAS Special Project, an 8-credit thesis project. The CAS project is a substantive investigation of a problem in librarianship or information science that you develop in consultation with your advisor and present to your CAS committee.

Practical experience prepares you, too

To meet licensing requirements and prepare for work with young people, you will complete one early field experience, or practicum, and two student-teaching placements during your course of study. The practicum is a 100-hour supervised field experience of professional-level duties at an approved school library site. It provides you with the opportunity to work in a school environment under the supervision of an experienced library information specialist. 

After successfully completing the practicum and all required coursework, you'll register for two student-teaching placements: one in an elementary library setting and one in a secondary library setting (middle or high school). Each placement is completed under the direction of an on-site cooperating teacher-librarian and a University supervisor.

Prior to student teaching, you must receive a passing score on the Library Information Specialist (LIS) #175 Content Area Test via the Illinois Licensure Testing System. You will complete the Educator Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA), as required for licensure by the state of Illinois, within one student-teaching placement.

Questions? Contact us.

Ruth Shasteen
Ruth Shasteen, Visiting School Librarian Licensure Program Coordinator