Professional Organizations | Maryland's iSchool - College of Information Studies - Graduate Program - University Of Maryland

School of Library and Information Science

Graduate Program

School of Library and Information Science

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Professional Organizations

Other Links

For information about other organizations not listed, visit Professional Associations in the Information Sciences, a directory maintained by the School of Library and Information Science, San José State University

National Organizations

National organizations in library and information science offer students and professionals the opportunity to meet people within the same field, to exchange ideas, and to learn from experienced professionals. A wide variety of organizations exist, and students are encouraged to join those within their expected graduation specialties. Most organizations offer special, lower membership rates for students who are enrolled at least half-time in a library science program. Links are provided below to some organizations' websites.

Academy of Management

The Academy of Management (AOM) is a leading professional association for scholars dedicated to creating and disseminating knowledge about management and organizations. Founded in 1936 by two professors, the Academy of Management is the oldest and largest scholarly management association in the world. Today, the Academy is the professional home for more than 17,000 members from 102 nations. Academy members are scholars at colleges, universities, and research institutions, as well as practitioners with scholarly interests from business, government, and not-for-profit organizations. Membership in the Academy is open to all individuals who find value in belonging.


The American Library Association (ALA) is the primary professional organization for the field of library science. ALA provides national guidelines for the field, within which many smaller, more specific national organizations are included. A complete list of the ALA's divisions is available at the ALA website. Additionally, ALA membership also provides the opportunity to join round tables. Since not every field of librarianship is covered by the individual divisions of the ALA, the round tables were established to cover and promote those fields. ALA also keeps a list of affiliate organizations, which include such organizations as the Medical Library Association and the Urban Libraries Council. Additional information about the round tables and ALA itself is available at their website.

American Society for Information Science & Technology (ASIS&T)

The members of the American Society for Information Science & Technology ASIS&T) are researchers, developers, practitioners, and policy makers in a wide range of related disciplines--library & information science, communications, networking technologies, and computer science. ASIS&T publishes JASIST, the premier journal of the information science field, as well as the Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science & Technology, and a monograph series.

The local chapter is the Potomac Valley Chapter.

Association for Computational Linguistics

The Association for Computational Linguistics is the international scientific and professional society for people working on problems involving natural language and computation. The ACL journal, Computational Linguistics, continues to be the primary forum for research on computational linguistics and natural language processing. An annual meeting is held each summer in locations where significant computational linguistics research is carried out.


ACM SIG CHI brings together people working on the design, evaluation, implementation, and study of interactive computing systems for human use. ACM SIGCHI provides an international, interdisciplinary forum for the exchange of ideas about the field of human-computer interaction (HCI). SIGCHI has the following special interest areas:

  • Accessibility
  • Education [Curricula for HCI]
  • Intercultural Issues
  • Kids and Computers
  • US Public Policy
  • World Wide Web
Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Information Retrieval

SIGIR focuses on all aspects of information storage, retrieval and dissemination, including research strategies, output schemes and system evaluations.  Major activities include the annual conference on research and development in information retrieval, held every summer.


AECT originated as a network for instructional technology professionals. Student membership is available to students taking at least nine credit hours a semester. Membership includes a subscription to TechTrends magazine, job referral services, convention discounts, and discounts on publications.

Association for Information Systems

The Association for Information Systems (AIS) is a professional organization whose purpose is to serve as the premier global organization for academics specializing in Information Systems.  AIS aims to create and maintain a professional identity for Information Systems educators, researchers and professionals, provide a focal point for contact and relations with bodies in government, the private sector, and in education that influence and/or control the nature of information systems, and improve curricula, pedagogy, and other aspects of IS education.

ACM U.S. Public Policy Committee (USACM)

Serves as the focal point for ACM's interaction with U.S. government organizations, the computing community, and the U.S. public in all matters of U.S. public policy related to information technology. Supported by ACM's Washington, D.C., Office of Public Policy, USACM responds to requests for information and technical expertise from U.S. government agencies and departments, seeks to influence relevant U.S. government policies on behalf of the computing community and the public, and provides information to ACM on relevant U.S. government activities. USACM also identifies potentially significant technical and public policy issues and brings them to the attention of ACM and the community.


Beta Phi Mu is the honor society for library and information professionals. The organization promotes studies by professionals and students in the LIS field by offering grants and scholarships. the College of Information Studies is part of the Iota Chapter, along with the School of Library and Information Science at the Catholic University of America.

Information Schools - iSchools

Deans from a number of leading iSchools have joined together to leverage the power of leading iSchools in building awareness of, support for and involvement with the iField among key constituencies, principally the media, business community, those who fund research, student prospects, and users of information.

International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)

Is the trusted source for professional development, knowledge generation, advocacy, and leadership for innovation. A nonprofit membership organization, ISTE provides leadership and service to improve teaching, learning, and school leadership by advancing the effective use of technology in PK–12 and teacher education.

Society For Information Management

The Society for Information Management (SIM) is an association of senior IT executives, prominent academicians, selected consultants, and other IT thought leaders built on the foundation of local chapters, who come together to share and enhance their rich intellectual capital for the benefit of its members and their organizations. SIM aims to be recognized as the community that is most preferred by IT leaders for delivering vital knowledge that creates business value and enables personal development.

Society Of American Archivists

SAA membership costs $40 per year for full-time students. In addition to the other benefits common to most organizations, the SAA provides students with opportunities to vote for officers and council members. SAA also has an active student chapter, Student Archivists at Maryland at the University of Maryland.

Special Libraries Association

The mission of SLA is to "advance the leadership role of the special librarian/information professional by putting knowledge to work in society." With this mission in mind, the SLA provides international networking opportunities for its members. For $25 a year, students members receive Information Outlook, SLA's monthly magazine, annual conferences and exhibits, public relations opportunities, scholarship and awards, just to name a few of the benefits. SLA also has an active student chapter at the University of Maryland.

State Organizations

Each state has its own professional organizations to provide those working in the library service field a professional network closer to home than most national organizations.

Student Chapters

District Of Columbia Library Association

According to the DCLS website, student members receive all Association publications and a subscription to the Association’s listserv.  The Association holds an annual Spring workshop among other events.

Maryland Association Of School Librarians

(formerly Maryland Educational Media Organization)
MASL provides Maryland's school library media specialists with statewide support and local conferences, professional networking, and affiliation with AASL.

Maryland Library Association

Like ALA, MLA has several subdivisions, including Academic & Research Libraries, Technical Services, Children's Services, and Public Services Divisions. For more information, visit, e-mail, call (410) 947-5090 or write the MLA Office at 1401 Hollins Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21223.

MSET - Maryland Society for Educational Technology.

The mission of this organization is to provide leadership for advancing meaningful uses of technology in the educational communities of Maryland.

Virginia Library Association

Membership provides seminars and conferences, including the VLA's annual conference, access to the Virginia Library Jobline, and subscriptions to the VLA's newsletter. Applications are available on VLA's webpage.

VEMA -- Virginia Educational Media Association.

The state organization for school library media specialists whose mission is to promote: literacy, information access and evaluation, love of literature, effective use of technology, collaboration in the teaching/learning process, intellectual freedom, professional growth, instructional leadership, and lifelong learning.

American Library Association Student Chapter (Ala)

iSchool-ALA is a student chapter of the American Library Association, which seeks to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services. The student chapter strives to create professional awareness by presenting speakers and workshops as well as organized tours and events. It also promotes interaction among students and with alumni through the hosting of various social events.

School Library Media Specialist Student Association

The Association provides opportunities for students to develop professional relationships and to discuss topics such as changes in the role and perception of the school library media specialist, issues addressed by guest speakers, and innovative materials and programming ideas.

Special Library Association Student Chapter

The University of Maryland student chapter of the Special Library Association (UMD-SLA) provides students with a means to explore the diversity of opportunities in special libraries and related information center settings. Students can participate in meetings, conferences, events, and continuing education offered by the local chapters of the SLA in Maryland, DC and Virginia.

Student Chapter Of The American Society For Information Science & Technology (ASIST)

The student chapter of ASIS&T provides members with the opportunity to network with fellow students, colleagues, and other information professionals interested in current information issues. Chapter membership enables students to gain experience in the society, and to contribute to personal growth and career development.

Student Archivists At Maryland (SAM)

SAM is a student chapter of the Society of American Archivists (SAA) and provides an opportunity for future archivists to connect and exchange ideas, tour local archival repositories, and meet with those practicing in the archival field.