MLS Admissions | Maryland's iSchool - College of Information Studies - Masters Degree - University Of Maryland

Graduate School

Graduate School

Information Studies

Faculty of Information

MLS Admissions

You can access the MLS Application HERE

What do we look for in an MLS applicant?

Like so many things it is, to a certain extent, something that “you know when you see it.” There are, however, certain characteristics that make an applicant and/or student stand out. These are characteristics that best-reflect the skills needed and the personality best suited for working in the field of information as it is now.

  • Adaptability

    Access to and the availability of information is ever changing. Those who choose to work in the information field have a responsibility to adapt with these changes. Whether it’s learning new classification systems or learning new methods of instruction, those entering the information profession must be willing and eager to continually learn and adapt to how people use information and the kinds of services that they need.

  • Creativity

    Whether there are issues of funding, changing user-expectations, or changing demographics within a service community, those in the information profession must be prepared to go beyond the status quo, beyond the “but we’ve always done it that way.” Our students have a willingness to try new techniques, programs, and services, and they actively seek information about trends and best practices. They also have a willingness to take risks, to fail, to learn, and to try again.

  • Leadership Potential

    We put great focus on the development of leadership skills that will help students effectively navigate the changing needs of the organization they join. Our students have a strong ability to communicate and are able to adapt their leadership style to their environment. They are self-reflective enough to know when to be constructively aggressive and when to provide others with the opportunity to lead.

  • Tech-Savvy

    The technology we use to identify, organize, and access information is changing at an ever-increasing pace. Students in the MLS Program must be tech-savvy and have a desire to continually adapt and update their tech skills. Students should be eager to learn how to use new devices, be comfortable with social media platforms, apps, analyzing data, and develop coding skills. To all this, students must approach technology through the lens of usability and accessibility.

  • Service-Oriented

    At the heart of the information profession is service. Applicants and students have an obligation to focus on the end-user and to providing inclusive services for the user’s benefit. Students must ensure that services whether they be programming, literacy instruction, data analysis, or records management be designed and implemented based on the actual needs of their users.


Admissions Criteria

Applications are due on February 1. 

All applicants to the College of Information Studies must meet the minimum requirements set by the University of Maryland Graduate School. These are:

  • Applicants must have earned a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution, or an equivalent degree from a non-U.S. institution.
  • Applicants must have earned a minimum 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) in all prior undergraduate and graduate coursework.
  • Applicants must provide an official hard copy of a transcript for all of their post-secondary work.

Required Application Materials

​*Please submit your targeted essay in the upload area for the Statement of Purpose. 

GRE Scores

Applicants to the MLS program may waive the GRE requirement if they meet the following criteria:

  • Domestic applicants with a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.5 or higher are not required to submit a GRE score
  • Domestic applicants with a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher AND who have earned another graduate degree are not required to submit a GRE score

** ALL international applicants are REQUIRED to submit GRE scores

GRE scores must be sent directly to the College of Information Studies - UM from the Educational Testing Service.

  • Institution code 5814
  • Scores must be no more than 5 years old at the time of application

Average GPA and GRE Scores of MLS Students:
The average GPA for students admitted for Fall 2013 was 3.55, and the average GRE percentile rankings for those recommended for admission were 84% Verbal, 48% Quantitative, and 61% Analytical. Typically, for GRE Scores we want to see students with scores that are at or above the 50th percentile.


Applicants must send official, sealed undergraduate and graduate transcripts from all post-secondary schools they have attended.

Transcripts should be mailed to:
University of Maryland College Park
Enrollment Services Operation -- Attn: Graduate Admissions
Room 0130 Mitchell Building
College Park, MD 20742

Application Submission Process

All application materials are submitted electronically through the Graduate School’s ApplyYourself/Hobsons application system. To ensure the integrity of the application process, the University of Maryland authenticates submitted materials through TurnItIn for Admissions.

The electronic submission of application materials helps expedite the review of an application. Completed applications are reviewed by an admissions committee in each graduate degree program. The recommendations of the committees are submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School, who will make the final admission decision. Students seeking to complete graduate work at the University of Maryland for degree purposes must be formally admitted to the Graduate School by the Dean. 

Information for International Graduate Students

The University of Maryland is dedicated to maintaining a vibrant international graduate student community. The office of International Students and Scholars Services (ISSS) is a valuable resource of information and assistance for prospective and current international students.  International applicants are encouraged to explore the services they offer, and contact them with related questions.

The University of Maryland Graduate School offers admission to international students based on academic information; it is not a guarantee of attendance.  Admitted international students will then receive instructions about obtaining the appropriate visa to study at the University of Maryland which will require submission of additional documents.  Please see the Graduate Admissions Process for International applicants for more information.

Help with the Application

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Hobson’s helpdesk for any technical issues.  For questions related to the ApplyYourself applicaiton process, prospective students may contact the Graduate School.

Deferring Admission

Applicants who are accepted to the MLS program may defer their program start date by 1 academic year. If an applicant wishes to attend after the 1 year deferment has passed he or she must reapply to the program.   

Contact Information

Admissions questions should be directed to:

Student Services Office
College of Information Studies
Room 4110, Hornbake Building South
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742-4325
Tel: (301) 405-2038
Fax: (301) 405-9145