A major part of attending graduate school, besides all the class assignments, is figuring out how to pay for it all. Working on an advanced degree is an investment worth making, whether to expand your options in your current job or to change careers entirely. While there is government student aid, private loans, maybe a savings accounts to tap into, and a myriad of scholarships available at SJSU SLIS, financing a master’s degree is still a concern for many who are planning to go back to school.
Published: June 09, 2014 by Allison Randall Gatt more...
Ready to go back to school? In an online learning environment, you don’t really go anywhere, unless it’s to the computer on your desk. For so many reasons, this can be really wonderful and convenient. With the fully online graduate programs offered by the SJSU information school, it means that I can go to school and take care of a family. It means that many students can work full-time and part-time and not have to drag themselves out of the house in the evening to go to class. It’s much easier when you only have to drag yourself to your computer. But what about building relationships with your classmates and your professors? What about class discussions?
Published: June 03, 2014 by Allison Randall Gatt more...
Once you begin your graduate program at SJSU SLIS you will most likely hear about the benefits of attending professional conferences. These are great opportunities to explore trends in the information profession, expand your professional network, and get new ideas regarding career options. Yet if you’re like most SLIS students, you may find it challenging to afford the costs of attending professional conferences, especially national conferences.
SLIS student Sharon Cheslow recently attended the California Academic and Research Libraries (CARL) annual conference in San Jose. She was thrilled to be able to attend the professional conference on a scholarship she received from CARL, which provided $500 towards her travel expenses and registration fees.
I chatted with Sharon recently, and thought I’d share some highlights from our conversation, so you can learn more about these types of scholarships. And hopefully Sharon’s story can inspire you to consider attending professional conferences while earning your graduate degree
How did you find out about the scholarship you received?
Published: May 02, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
When I started the MLIS program I had already been working at a public library for over a year and I loved my job. By the end of my first semester I was positive I wanted to focus on public libraries and youth librarianship.
Maybe you came to SLIS, like me, after working at a job in a library or information center, hoping to advance a career you really enjoy. Or perhaps you are beginning your degree not really knowing what direction you want to take but very interested in what the information profession has to offer.
No matter how you got here, I recommend that you take a look around before you commit to any one career direction. I wish I would have taken this advice, if only for the chance to familiarize myself with all of the possibilities.
Published: April 10, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
Deciding to go back to school isn’t easy, especially if it’s been a while since you earned your last degree. You may have thought long and hard about your options, weighing the challenges versus the rewards of earning your MLIS or MARA degree. It can seem daunting to return to school but there are ways to ease the transition and make the most of the adventure in front of you.
Create a time management plan
For me, the great thing about being an undergraduate student was that I didn’t have much else going on in my life besides school and homework. Returning to school to earn a graduate degree, however, usually coincides with a job, family, and other time commitments. That’s why it is important to establish a study routine. Perhaps pick a time of day that you will choose to login to class, complete readings and assignments. You might also need to find a location that is quiet or where you can’t be bothered for a set amount of time. This plan will especially help if you start feeling overwhelmed at any point during the semester.
Published: April 04, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
As a new student you may not have even thought about your last class. You may have glossed over any mention of a final, culminating experience that is required during your final semester at the iSchool. As an MLIS student you are required to either complete the e-portfolio or a thesis during your last (or second to last) semester. MARA students are also required to complete an e-portfolio. Like most MLIS students, I chose the e-portfolio, and I am currently in the midst of compiling, writing, and editing its many pages.
Published: March 27, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
Each semester as students complete their MLIS or MARA degree, the school asks them to complete an exit survey. Although the school uses the data to identify areas to improve its programs, as a new student, survey results can help you learn about your future classmates.
The data about the December 2013 graduates from the MLIS program was recently released and posted on the school’s website. Here are some interesting details.
Around 30% of students live outside of the state of California. You will find that many of your classmates reside all over the United States, while some, about 5%, even live outside of the U.S. Because SLIS offers a fully online program, students across the globe can share a virtual classroom. Since starting my MLIS degree I have worked with students all over the country, including some students in Canada, Japan, and South Korea. Making connections with so many different classmates has allowed me to see the information profession from a worldwide perspective.
Published: March 20, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
Most everyone these days has a Facebook account, including your 96 year old aunt Mabel. So it probably won’t come as a shock that SLIS also has a Facebook page where you can learn about the latest school news, happenings, and announcements. But did you know that SLIS also has a lot of other social media channels that will bring you news about our profession and allow you to connect with our community?
Yes, of course SLIS has a Facebook page. You probably already log onto Facebook at least once a day so why not follow SLIS and join in conversations with your fellow classmates and faculty? You can post questions to the page and people will respond. Looking for help finding a resource or an idea? Posing it on the SLIS Facebook page can really garner responses. Check it out!
Published: March 18, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
I put off taking LIBR 285 Research Methods until my second to last semester in the MLIS program. I put it off because I was intimidated. I had read the description of the class, I knew I had to take it at some point, but I kept delaying the inevitable.
By now you have most likely looked at the required courses and perhaps mentally planned when you will take each one. As 200, 202, and 204 are often pre-requisites for electives, most new students take these courses right away. This opens up your remaining semesters to delve into other topics and classes. But LIBR 285 will be there, lurking in the shadows as a reminder that you haven’t really taken all of your required classes.
Don’t let the class description worry you and don’t feel like you need to put off taking 285 until the last possible moment. While I did wait, there was truly no need for me, and you, to feel intimidated.
Published: March 12, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...
What are your summer plans?
If you aren’t planning a long trip, or you don’t have big responsibilities at work or at home, you might want to consider the new i.School Open Classes program at SLIS. Recently unveiled, the Open Classes program provides the opportunity for newly admitted students to get an early start on their electives.
The Open Classes program was not designed just for newly admitted students. It allows anyone to enroll in one or more of the school’s graduate-level courses and earn college credit, including SLIS alumni who want to update their knowledge.
If you’re currently admitted to the school’s MLIS or MARA program and plan to start classes in fall 2014, you could potentially enroll for the summer session through the Open Classes program and take an elective (core classes aren’t available). You can then use the course you complete this summer towards your graduation requirements, getting you one step closer to completing your degree.
Published: February 25, 2014 by Kari Van Baalen more...