Completing the MLIS Candidacy Approval Form


Completing the MLIS Candidacy Approval Form

Note: The SJSU Petition for Advancement to Graduate Candidacy form has changed. Please be sure you are using the most current form, available from this location.

Quick Links

  1. Student Information
  2. Degree Information
  3. Proposed Graduate Degree Program
  4. Required Signatures
  5. How to Submit Your Candidacy Form
  6. Tracking your Candidacy and Making Changes to your Approved Plan

This page contains instructions for MLIS candidacy applicants. Instructions for MARA candidacy applicants can be found on the page, Completing the MARA Candidacy Approval Form. Note: Your form will not be approved for candidacy if your CUM GPA is below 3.0. You must have 9 units of graded classes on your transcript before you may file a Candidacy form.

Candidacy Approval Form. The requirements for completing this form are fairly strict. Following the instructions below will help you successfully complete the form and avoid the delays and problems associated with needing to resubmit it. You can view a sample completed form.

You will need the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC (free to download). Be sure to:

  • Save the candidacy form onto your computer -do not try to fill it in online -Adobe Reader will give you an error message if you try to use it to sign an online PDF
  • Be sure to use Adobe Reader DC

You can also download the Adobe Creative Cloud Software (including Adobe Acrobat) that is free to students -but with restrictions and limitations based on semester enrollment.

  1. OPEN the Candidacy Approval form [PDF].
  2. Do a FILE/SAVE AS to your computer, renaming the file as follows: [YOURLASTNAME_YOURFIRSTNAME_STUDENTIDNUMBER].pdf.
  3. Open this file from your computer and, using Adobe Reader, TYPE directly into the form you see displayed on your computer screen.
  4. SAVE to your computer desktop.
  5. Upload the completed form to Canvas -see Steps to Submit the Candidacy Approval Form (below)

1. Student Information

Disregard the statement at the top of the form: “This completed form should be emailed to the appropriate GAPE evaluator, submitted to Window G in the Student Services Center, or sent through interoffice mail to extended zip 0017,” as you will be submitting the form to iSchool who will then gather necessary signatures and forward the form to GAPE directly on your behalf.

  1. Last Name/First Name, etc. — Click in the area marked “Last Name” and type in your last name. Complete the rest of this section by moving to each field and clicking in the area where you wish to type.
  2. Student ID: Enter your MySJSU ID
  3. Current Address, City, State and Zip: Enter your most up to date information in these fields.
  4. Daytime Phone/ Email Address: Include your most recent telephone number and email address.

2. Degree Information

  1. Degree Sought, e.g., MBA; Type in “MLIS”.
  2. Leave the Major and Concentration fields blank.
  3. Plan — iSchool students taking the INFO 289 e-Portfolio course should choose “B)” (Non-Thesis) button. If you are writing a thesis to satisfy the culminating requirement, choose “A)” the 299 thesis option.
  4. Means of satisfying GWAR Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement: type in “LIBR 200 or INFO 200.” For University: type “SJSU” and then enter the semester and year you completed that course.


3. Proposed Graduate Degree Program

Section 3.A Courses

When listing your courses, follow the format in the example below. List all of the iSchool courses that you have taken or that you plan on taking. Be sure to list semester units, grades received, and the semester it was or will be completed. List the courses in order taken, not numerically. For future classes, leave the Grade blank, but fill in the Semester Completed and Semester Units.

You must complete 43 units for the MLIS degree (3 of these units will be Culminating Experience units listed in section B). Do not list more than the required number of units needed for the program! If you have taken more than the required number of units, do not list more than the 43 units required. Be sure to list the required classes of 200, 202, 203, 204, and 285. List your Culminating Experience course (INFO 289 or INFO 299) in Section B below; do not list it here. List courses taken as LIBR through Summer 2015; then list them as INFO starting with Fall 2015. List any MARA or INFM courses taken as electives here as well. The course grades listed on the candidacy form must result in an overall GPA of at least 3.0 (B). Students who carry an “Incomplete” grade will not be permitted to apply for candidacy. World Languages classes are to go in Section A. iSchool students may have no more than 15 units worth of Credit/No Credit coursework as part of their total 43 units for the MLIS degree.

List only the classes that have a grade of C or higher. Do not list any classes with a grade of C- or below. If a student gets a C or better, it will count towards the degree. If a student gets a C- or lower, that class cannot be used on the Graduate Candidacy application or counted toward the degree. Instead, the student will have to take another class in substitution to get up to 42 or 43 units.

Use the titles on your transcript or MySJSU class list. You can also find course titles on the iSchool Course Descriptions list.


Section 3.B Culminating Experience

In this section, list how you intend on fulfilling the culminating requirement. This can be either INFO 299 Thesis or INFO 289.

If you plan to complete the e-Portfolio option to satisfy the University’s graduation requirement, check the second box Last completed project or comprehensive exam-preparation course (Plan B). If you plan to do a Thesis, check the “299 Thesis (PlanA)/ Creative Work (Plan C)” box and indicate the units you plan to do for your Thesis and the semester in which you plan to complete the Thesis. Remember to type in “INFO” on the Course Prefix/Catalog No. line to the left and list the units and semester in the columns on the right, but do not list a grade. INFO 289 and 299 are not offered in the Summer. They can only be taken in Spring or Fall. Your culminating experience class counts toward your final 43 units.


Section 3.C Transfer Courses

In this section, list any courses that you wish to transfer from other schools. Be sure to list grades received, semester units, and the semester it was or will be completed. Classes taken through iSchool Open Classes are to be listed in section C. (Open Classes courses do not need to be approved of as transfer credit. Just list them on section C). WISE classes are taken as INFO 298 and should be listed in section A on the Candidacy form. Before doing this, please carefully read the information on the Transferring Units page. The total units should not exceed 9 units. Note that iSchool will not approve any substitute for a required iSchool class. Do not supply a “Substituted for” class. Leave those fields blank. Only list the information from the institution where you took the courses.

Total Units — Fill in the number of units from Sections A, B, and C and the Total. You must complete 43 units for the MLIS degree. 

4. Required Signatures

Student Signature — Use Adobe Acrobat to provide a digital signature on the Student Signature line, or sign it electronically (if you have an electronic signature using another program). Click here for help with how to sign a PDF. Leave all other signatures blank. The iSchool office will review it, obtain the necessary signatures, and submit your form to GAPE.

Example Signature for fake student “Chelsea Smith”


5. Steps to submit the Candidacy Approval Form.

  1. Proofread carefully to be sure you have correctly completed all the requested information.
  2. Save to your own computer/desktop; save file as [YOURLASTNAME_YOURFIRSTNAME_STUDENTIDNUMBER].pdf.
  3. Make sure to upload your Candidacy Form to the appropriate Canvas drop box in the iSchool Advising and Administration site before the GAPE deadlines. All MLIS students are automatically enrolled in this Canvas site. Log in to your Canvas account and look under Courses > iSchool Advising and Administration. The drop box link is available from the course site home page.

  • iSchool staff will print a hardcopy of your form, review it, obtain signatures, and deliver it to the GAPE office.

6. Tracking your Candidacy and Making Changes to your Approved Plan


GAPE takes at least a couple of months to properly evaluate your candidacy petition. You will know when if your candidacy has been approved in two ways: you will see it under “Other Indicators,” on MySJSU and you will receive an email. Make sure MySJSU has your correct and current e-mail and mailing addresses. The School of Information has no information as to the status of your candidacy application; please do not contact the iSchool for this information.

1. If you make any changes in actual course titles after your Candidacy form has been approved, you will need to submit a course substitution form to the Advising site on Canvas. Submit course substitution forms as soon as you have made changes to your course plan so that your graduation file is current when GAPE evaluates your Candidacy in the weeks immediately following your final semester. Failure to submit a course substitution form will delay your graduation. Watch your service indicators for messaging from GAPE in the weeks following your final semester.

2. If you change the date you plan to graduate after you have submitted an Application for Award of Master’s Degree form, you must submit a Change of Graduation Date Form and pay the $10.00 fee online.