This chapter contains reports and summaries of the data on curriculum as reported by the responding schools for the 1997-1998 academic year.
For those schools on the quarter system, the notation "qt" is used. Some schools have indicated that "units" or "courses" are used instead of a specific number of hours of credit as guidelines for degree requirements. In such cases these units are indicated as the respondents reported them. Following each table is additional descriptive information that does not fit the general reporting pattern of the table but is useful in the interpretation of the question.
All 56 ALA schools reported this year; two non-ALA schools also submitted data. All of the questionnaires received were usable; however, as has been the case each year, some respondents did not complete all the questions; therefore, the totals in all tables may not always add up to the 56 responses received.
In a departure from past years, tables III-1 through III-29 describing the structure of the schools' programs (type of academic year division, number of weeks in a term, number of credit hours for various degree programs, joint degree programs, minimum and maximum time for completion of degree programs, methods of course reduction, residency requirements, credit transfer, fieldwork requirements, graduation requirements and the like) are not included in the printed version of the Report but are published only in the web version (http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curriculum). Only highlights from these tables are included below in the print version.
Following some preliminary comments on structural changes that have occurred in the past year, the remainder of this chapter presents data on more volatile aspects of curriculum issues, e.g., distance education, use of regular and adjunct faculty, faculty teaching loads, cross-listed courses, curriculum committees, and curricular changes.
Brief comments with references to the web-published tables are provided for tables III-1 through III-29.
- Academic Year. Most schools (53)
are organized in a semester or trimester basis; 3 follow a quarter
system (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-1.html
Table III-1 - Type of Academic Year Division and
http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-2.html Table III-2
- Number of Weeks Per Term by School).
- Undergraduate Degree. The number
of schools offering undergraduate majors in some aspect of LIS increased
from 9 to 10; the number of undergraduate minors increased from
12 to 13. (See
http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-3.htmlTable III-3 -
Undergraduate Major Degree Academic Hour Requirements and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-4.html
Table III-4 - Undergraduate Minor Degree Academic Hour Requirements).
- Master's Degree. Length of program
is generally between 36 and 54 hours for Master's degrees. (See
III-5 - Master's Degree Academic Credit Hour Requirements and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-8.htmlTable
III-8 - Summary of Degree Hour Requirements by School).
- Post-Master's Programs. The number
of schools offering a post-master's degree (variously labelled Sixth
Year, Specialist, Advanced Certificate) increased from 33 to 36.
III-6 - Post-Master's Degree Academic Credit Hour Requirements and
III-9 - Certificate Programs by School).
- Doctoral Programs. The number
of schools offering doctoral degrees increased from 22 to 25. (See
Table III-7 - Doctoral Degree Academic Year Requirements.
- Joint Programs. Twenty-eight schools
report offering 78 joint degree programs (up from 26 schools offering
75 programs last year). History and Law are the most common. (See
III-10 - Joint Degree Programs Academic Hour Requirements.
- Program Length. The maximum and
minimum times to complete degree programs varies widely. The minimum
ranges from 8 to 24 months for the Master's degree, from 8 to 18
months for the post-Master's and from 15 to 48 months for the doctoral
degree. Maximum times range from 3-10 years for the Master's degree,
2-7 years for the post-Master's and 4-14 years for the doctoral
http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-11.html Table III-11
- Minimum Time for Completion of Degree Program, http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-12.htmlTable
III-12 - Maximum Time for Completion of Degree Program, and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-13.htmlTable
III-13 - Minimum and Maximum Times for Completion of Degree Programs
- Status of Courses after Maximum Time.
This table was omitted in this year's edition but data from the
1998 edition are available at http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-14.htmlTable
III-14 - Methods of Course Revalidation after Maximum Time.
- Residency Requirements. Thirty-four
of the ALA schools had some kind of residency requirement for the
Master's degree; twenty-two had none. The majority of schools reporting
had no residency requirement for the post-Master's degree. Undergraduate
and doctoral program residency requirements varied widely. (See
III-15 - Residency Requirements for all Degree Programs by School).
- Required Course Work. Requirements
range from 6 to 48 hours of courses in Master's programs on the
semester system and from 30 to 60 hours for those on the quarter
system. The average, among schools on the semester system, is 19
hours. The average number of required hours for the post-master's
is 5 and the average number for doctoral programs is 22 hours. (See
Table III-16 - Required Course Work Hours by Schools and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-17.html
Table III-17 - Required Course Work by Hours.)
- Exemption from Required Courses.
Most schools provide opportunities to exempt courses at the Master's
level; fewer offer the option for the post-Master's or doctorate.The
most common method is evidence of a similar course taken elsewhere
via a transcript and/or syllabus. Seventeen schools offer written
exams as an exemption method. In programs that allow exemption of
required courses, 23 allow the exempted courses to count toward
the Master's degree and seven toward the doctorate. (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-18.html Table
III-18 - Exemption of Required Courses by Degree Program, http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-19.htmlTable
III-19 - Methods of Exempting Required Courses, http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-20.htmlTable
III-20 - Credit Gained through Exemption of Required Courses, and
III-21 - Number of Hours that may be Exempted.)
- Credit Transfer. The majority of schools allow either 6 or 9 hours transfer credit for the Master's degree. Fifteen schools will accept courses for credit taken at non-ALA accredited schools; 37 will not. (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-22.html Table III-22 - Credit Hours that may be Transferred into Programs and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-23.htmlTable III-23 - Acceptance of Credit from Non-ALA Schools.)
- Thesis Requirements. Thirty schools
offer a thesis option for the Master's degree; eight require it.
Eight schools offer the option for the post-Master's degree and
11 require it. All schools offering a doctorate require a thesis.
Most schools require 6 hours for the thesis for both the Master's
and post-Master's. (see http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-24.htmlTable
III-24 - Thesis Requirement by Degree Programs and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-25.htmlTable
III-25 - Number of Hours Required for Thesis.)
- Field Work. Eleven schools require
fieldwork and 38 schools offer it as an option for the Master's
degree. Some schools also offer a fieldwork option for post-Master's
work and the doctorate. When fieldwork is available, it is commonly
awarded 3 semester hours of credit. (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-26.htmlTable
III-26 - Field Work for Credit by Degree Programs and http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-27.htmlTable
III-27 - Number of Hours Given for Field Work by Degree Programs).
- Graduation Requirements. The most
common graduation requirement for all degree programs was a comprehensive
exam. Other requirements mentioned were language, master's project
or portfolio, computer proficiency, among others. (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-28.html
Table III-28 - Special Requirements for Graduation by Degree Programs.)
- Entrance Requirements. The most frequently indicated tests required were the TOEFL for foreign students and the GRE and MAT tests for general admission. (See http://ils.unc.edu/ALISE/1999/Curric/tb3-29.html Table III-29 - Prerequisites for Entering Programs.)
Respondents indicated a number of ways in which they offered courses away from their home campuses at distant sites.This year 45 schools (compared to 40 schools last year) offered a total of 533 courses taught as distance education. The range is from 1 to 55 courses and the average is 12 courses per school were offered. Table III-30 contains the data reported by the respondents related to courses taught in their distance education programs.
Thirty schools indicated that they expect to change their distance education programs.