This program does not directly admit students. It is a degree for students admitted into the PhD Information who leave the PhD program without fulfilling all the PhD requirements but who have completed all requirements for the Masters of Science: Research.

This master's program is offered for work leading to the Ph.D. Students may not apply directly for this named option, and should instead see the admissions information for the Ph.D.

Graduate School Resources

Resources to help you afford graduate study might include assistantships, fellowships, traineeships, and financial aid. Further funding information is available from the Graduate School. Be sure to check with your program for individual policies and restrictions related to funding.

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

Review the Graduate School minimum academic progress and degree requirements, in addition to the program requirements listed below.

Named Option Requirements


Face to Face Evening/Weekend Online Hybrid Accelerated
Yes No No No No


Minimum Credit Requirement 30 credits
Minimum Residence Credit Requirement 16 credits
Minimum Graduate Coursework Requirement 15 credits must be graduate-level coursework. Details can be found in the Graduate School’s Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) policy (
Overall Graduate GPA Requirement 3.00 GPA required.
This program follows the Graduate School's GPA Requirement policy
Other Grade Requirements Within the student's total program, one grade of BC or C is allowable in either a required or elective course if it is balanced by a grade of A or AB earned either prior to or concurrently with the unsatisfactory grade. Students receiving a BC or C move into probationary status. A second grade of BC or C or any grade of D or F will normally result in the student being dropped from the program. In addition, a student's graduate-program cumulative grade point average must be maintained at 3.00 or above.
Assessments and Examinations No formal examination is required.
Language Requirements None.

Students in the MS Information Research Option must complete any 30 credits from the below list of approved courses.

Approved Courses

L I S 910 Smr-Research Design & Methodology for Library & Information Studies3
L I S 925 Professional Writing and Reading (PWR) Seminar1
L I S 931 Seminar in Information Policy, Management and Institutions3
L I S 940 Seminar in Information Use and Users in Context3
L I S 950 Seminar in LIS Foundations: Histories, Philosophies and Debates3
L I S 975 Seminar in Information Organization and Access3
L I S 603 Research and Assessment for Information Professionals3
COM ARTS 762 Communication Research Methods3
JOURN 658 Communication Research Methods4
L I S/​COM ARTS  705 Introductory Analytics for Decision Making3
STAT 371 Introductory Applied Statistics for the Life Sciences3
SOC/​C&E SOC  360 Statistics for Sociologists I4
SOC 362 Statistics for Sociologists III4
ED PSYCH 760 Statistical Methods Applied to Education I3
ED PSYCH 761 Statistical Methods Applied to Education II3
COMP SCI 319 Data Science Programming I for Research3
SOC/​C&E SOC  365 Data Management for Social Science Research3-4
L I S 768 Digital Humanities Analytics3
ELPA 823 Data Management for Education Policy Analysis3
ED PSYCH 551 Quantitative Ethnography3
STAT 303 R for Statistics I1
STAT 304 R for Statistics II1
STAT 305 R for Statistics III1
L I S 639 Pedagogical Theory and Practice for Information Professionals3
CURRIC 818 Teaching Controversial Issues3
CURRIC 844 Culturally Relevant Pedagogy3
L I S/​CURRIC  620 Field Project in Library and Information Agencies3
L I S 999 Independent Reading and Research1-4

Graduate School Policies

The Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures provide essential information regarding general university policies. Program authority to set degree policies beyond the minimum required by the Graduate School lies with the degree program faculty. Policies set by the academic degree program can be found below.



Graduate Work from Other Institutions

The program will not accept credits taken outside of UW-Madison to be used toward the degree.

UW–Madison Undergraduate

The program will allow up to 3 credits of approved MS Information or computer science coursework taken as an undergraduate to be counted toward the degree.  The coursework must be from the approved MS curriculum or approved by an Information School advisor.

UW–Madison University Special

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of coursework numbered 300 or above taken as a UW–Madison University Special student. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements. 


Registration is not a guarantee of enrollment under conditions of unsatisfactory progress. Students who fall into unsatisfactory progress will have an academic hold placed on their record; they should discuss clearing the hold with their adviser.

  1. Good standing: progressing according to standards.
  2. Probation: not progressing according to standards but permitted to enroll; potential loss of scholarships.
  3. Unsatisfactory progress: not progressing according to standards; not permitted to enroll, dismissal, leave of absence.

A student may be placed on probation or suspended from the Graduate School for low grades or for failing to resolve incompletes in a timely fashion. In special cases the Graduate School permits students who do not meet these minimum standards to continue on probation upon recommendation and support of their advisor.   See iSchool Student Handbook.


All continuing students are required to meet with the staff advisor prior to registering for each semester in order to remove registration holds and ensure timely progress towards degree completion.  Students may switch advisors at any time by completing a change of advisor form.


15 credits (however, 12 credits are highly encouraged)


The maximum period for completion of the M.S. (under special circumstances) is seven calendar years. Contact the department for more information.

This program follows the Graduate School's Time Limits policy.


These resources may be helpful in addressing your concerns:

Students should contact the department chair or program director with questions about grievances. They may also contact the L&S Academic Divisional Associate Deans, the L&S Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning Administration, or the L&S Director of Human Resources.



Graduate School Resources

Take advantage of the Graduate School's professional development resources to build skills, thrive academically, and launch your career. 

Contact Dr Rebekah Willett, Information School PhD Program Chair.