This course is for students with a first degree or equivalent in any discipline, who would like to start or develop a career working with digital technologies and media to manage information resources, systems and services. The course is also ideal for professionals wishing to update their knowledge and skills within the information sector.
Information Science is a broad, interdisciplinary field, which is relevant and applicable to all disciplines. Information Scientists may work in any organisation that collects and processes information of any kind. Whilst it has its origins in the handling of the scientific and technical literature, today the subject appeals to those who enjoy working with information resources of all kinds, and who have an aptitude for the technological systems and processes related to information storage, preservation, discovery and access.
City's MSc Information Science is designed to provide you with a deep understanding of information systems and services, and their relevance and impact within different layers of society.
The course examines information infrastructures, communication processes, systems and services. Our course is grounded in the history and philosophy of information, embracing the legal, ethical, social and economic impact of information within specific subject domains, individual organisations, and contemporary society.
Content covers the fundamental concepts of data, information and knowledge, and builds on these to consider: metadata; database structure; information resources, retrieval, and access; measurement, analysis, and visualisation of information; preservation and security; information literacy; use of new and emergent technologies; methods of investigation; socio-cultural implications and policy formulation.
You will be equipped with insight into information flow within contemporary society, and its relevance and impact for communities. Throughout the course, there is a strong focus on technology, ethics, impact and influence of information on individuals, professions and society. Our focus is divided equally between theory and its application to practice. You will benefit from a high level of engagement with practitioners, and we are pleased to welcome many leaders in the profession as speakers on our modules.
City's Information Science course is approved by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). CILIP accredited courses are recognised by the American Library Association (ALA) and The Australian Library and Information Association, which means that our graduates are qualified to apply for posts requiring professional level qualifications in these countries.
Applicants should normally hold a second-class honours degree or the equivalent from an international institution in any discipline, or have LIS related work experience.
If you do not qualify for direct entry, you may wish to follow a Graduate Diploma pathway to the programme through one of our partners.
Don't meet the entry requirements? INTO City, University of London offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare you for study at City, University of London. You'll learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre.
These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry. To prepare for this degree course, learn more about the Graduate Diploma in Informatics.
City works in partnership with Kaplan International College (KIC) London to provide preparatory courses for international students. Pre Masters courses at KIC London offer comprehensive support to students wishing to complete their postgraduate study at City. Progression to this degree is guaranteed if you complete the KIC London Pre-Masters course at the required level.
For overseas students whose first language is not English, the following qualification is required:
Don't meet the English language requirements? INTO City, University of London offers English language programmes to help prepare you for study at university. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to degree courses.
If you are not from the European Economic Area / Switzerland and you are coming to study in the UK, you may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study.
The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course. There are different rules for:
For more information see our main Visa page.
Thank you for having decided to apply to study a postgraduate course at the School of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering. Please note that the deadline for applications for the 2020/21 academic year is 31st August 2020, however we may close earlier if all places are filled.
You will be expected to submit the following:
Please note: Academic references are not required when you submit your application. However, the admissions tutor may request them at a later date to help make a decision on your application.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7040 0248
Postgraduate Courses Office, A302
School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering
City, University of London
Fees in each subsequent year of study (where applicable) will be subject to an annual increase of 2%. We will confirm any change to the annual tuition fee to you in writing prior to you commencing each subsequent year of study (where applicable).
If a student leaves City after commencing but before completing their course, City reserves the right to charge the student the tuition/course fee for the full academic year (or full course for capacity limited post-graduate courses - up to a maximum of 2 years fees) in question. The student may be charged the full fee for that year or course as applicable unless the student is able to present justification that exceptional and unforeseeable reasons for their withdrawal exist.
City has introduced an instalment payment scheme which is available to certain categories of students, including taught postgraduate students. For students following the normal academic year, the annual fee may be paid in two equal instalments: the first on registering, the second on 31st January. If you wish to pay your fees by instalment you must pay the first instalment at or before registration, by cheque or credit/debit card. You must also supply your bank details or credit card details for payment of your second instalment which will be deducted automatically from your bank or credit card account on 31st January.
The School offers a range of generous scholarships, bursaries and prizes to applicants for this course:
Internships are not a part of this course, but students who wish to are usually able to obtain work experience (paid or voluntary), or to work with external organisations in completing assignments or carrying out a dissertation project. Details of opportunities are posted on our Moodle forum.
City, University of London has recently undergone a significant level of refurbishment, so that course participants can enjoy state of the art classrooms and facilities.
We work in close connection with our colleagues at City Library, who offer excellent support and advice to our students, in addition to contributing to our courses. Follow @cityunilibrary and @cityunilibresearchers on Twitter.
You will have access to our state-of-the-art mentoring service. CityLIS student Saidah Gilbert recently took part in the professional mentoring scheme.
At City, there are many programmes that help and advise students in their chosen discipline. The Professional Mentoring Scheme was one of them.
We offer a free language course for City, University of London students.
Course timetables are normally available from July and can be accessed from our timetabling pages. These pages also provide timetables for the current academic year, though this information should be viewed as indicative and details may vary from year to year.
Please note that all academic timetables are subject to change.
We offer an extensive support network during your time here at City, University of London – from Learning Support (including disability support) and counselling to financial and career advice – leaving you free to enjoy every opportunity campus life has to offer.
The teaching and learning methods we use are designed to allow your specialist knowledge and autonomy to develop as you progress through the course.
Teaching at CityLIS takes place on Mondays and Fridays, during each of the two, 10 week teaching terms. Full-time students attend on both days. Part-time students attend on Mondays in year one, and Fridays in year two. Classes may be scheduled anytime between 09.00 and 18.00, although we usually try to work between 10.00 and 17.00.
Taught modules are usually delivered through a series of 30 hours of lectures. Lectures are normally used to:
City's online learning environment, Moodle, contains resources to support face-to-face lectures, including lecture notes, further reading, web-based media resources and an interactive discussion forum.
In addition to lectures, you will have the opportunity to attend course-related workshops and seminars. You also will have access to a personal tutor, an academic member of staff from whom you can gain learning support throughout your degree.
We expect you to study independently and complete coursework for each module. This will amount to approximately 120 hours of study per module, in addition to class attendance. Each of the modules run by CityLIS is assessed through coursework, where you will need to answer a variety of assignments to show that you are able to apply your theoretical learning to practical situations. Elective modules may be assessed by examination.
On successful completion of the course's eight taught modules, you will undertake your dissertation. This is an original piece of research conducted with academic supervision, but largely independently. The dissertation allows you to demonstrate your ability to think and work independently, to be aware of and to comprehend current issues within the discipline and practice, to initiate ways of investigating and solving current problems or questions, and to deliver results, solutions and recommendations on time.
The individual project is a substantial task. It is your opportunity to develop a research-related topic under the supervision of an academic member of staff. This is where you can apply what you have learnt to a real-world problem or to develop further, contemporary conceptual theory in information science.
Communication and networking are an integral part of our Information Science masters course, and in preparation for professional practice, you will be expected to engage with blogs, Twitter and other relevant communications media as part of your studies. Face-to-face participation in student and new professional forums including research seminars, workshops and conferences is actively promoted. You will be encouraged to present your work (assignments, dissertation) to the wider LIS community for discussion and development.
The MSc in Information Science is offered as a one year full-time course, or two year part-time course.
You can expect to study for approximately 40 hours per week full-time, and 20 hours per week part-time. The actual time required will vary according to the individual, and with existing experience and prior study.
The course comprises seven core modules and one elective module. These taught modules run during the first and second terms, whilst the third, summer term is reserved for the dissertation. While we aim to run all of our advertised electives, we reserve the right to cancel an elective should this be necessary. For example, if very few students choose it. Some electives are offered by other departments, who may need to restrict access to very popular electives (though this has not happened in recent years). Please note that as some electives run on different days, students who can only attend on one day per week may be restricted in their choice of elective module.
Each of the modules counts for 15 credits, and requires approximately 150 hours work, of which 30 hours are face-to-face instruction (this may be as lectures, seminars, group work, discussion, practical work), and 120 hours are self-directed study.
On successful completion of 8 taught modules, you can progress to the dissertation. The dissertation is worth 60 credits, and takes around 400 hours. This is an original piece of research conducted with academic supervision, but largely independently.
The goal of library and information science is to enable access to, use of, and consequent understanding of information. To do this, the discipline is concerned with the processes of the information communication chain: the creation, dissemination, management, organisation, preservation, analysis and use of information, instantiated as documents.
The MSc in Information Science covers:
A thorough introduction to the principles and concepts of the information sciences. Topics include the story of documents, philosophy of information, information literacy, critical literacy, infometrics, information behaviour, information society
Provides the technical background required to store, describe, structure, manage and share information effectively. Topics include: introduction to computing, internet and web, Web 2.0 technologies (blogs, wikis, etc.), metadata, semantic web, database systems and searching, collection and analysis of information, information architecture and meaning.
Gives an understanding of the principles and practice of the organization of information and knowledge. Topics covered include metadata, cataloguing and resource description, classification and taxonomy, subject headings and thesauri, indexing and abstracting, and construction of controlled vocabularies.
Provides a broad introduction to documentary information retrieval, and to the evaluation of information retrieval systems. Topics covered include information retrieval models, search strategy and tactics, bibliographic retrieval, OPACs, web search, mobile information retrieval, image and sound retrieval, implementation and evaluation of retrieval systems.
Introduces the principles of the management of information resources of diverse kinds in a variety of environments, and the strategies and policies which make this possible. Emphasis is on the specific issues of the disciplines which manage information and documents: information resource management, knowledge management, records management and archiving, collection management, etc.
Provides knowledge and skills which are relevant in the academic environment, in the workplace and for lifelong learning. Topics covered include: nature of research and evaluation; research methods, including surveys, system and service evaluation, system design, and desk research; data analysis and presentation; literature analysis; written and oral communication; ethical issues; project management.
Provides an understanding of information provision in a variety of domains, including academic subjects, professional disciplines and everyday and leisure topics; gives an insight into subject-specific information work. Topics include information in law, business, healthcare, and the arts, in academic subject areas such as history, mathematics, chemistry and languages, for everyday and general reference.
You can choose one option from the following:
Gives a broad understanding of the ways in which the publication of recorded information is changing, and the impact which this will have on publishers, libraries, other information providers and society in general. These issues are related within a framework of forces for changes: technical, economic, social and political.
The Information and Data, Law and Ethics module covers a wide range of legal issues relevant to the information profession - such as intellectual property, data protection & privacy, cybercrime and computer misuse, freedom of information, libel, and the re-use of public sector information.
Allows you to undertake individual in-depth study of a topic which is not fully covered by other modules, and which is appropriate for independent literature-based research. Topics are chosen by agreement between student and supervisor.
Introduces the principles and practice of building dynamic web applications. Topics covered include web applications architecture, mark-up languages, web servers and protocols, connectivity with database systems, client side processing, integration of components in a functional application
The aims of this module are to teach you how design and create graphics to represent data. It will teach you to allow you to build your own data visualisation applications, identify principles of good information visualisation design and provide structured guidelines for the data visualization workflow.
Provides conceptual knowledge of database modelling with practical skills and experience of using relational databases. Topics covered include conceptual modelling, relational modelling, physical models, the SQL Data Definition Language and the SQL Data Manipulation Language.
The programme specification contains more information on how the course is organised, the requirements for progression for each part and credits required for awards.
MSc Information Science graduates have an excellent record of establishing successful careers in:
The course is also an excellent preparation for further study and research.
You can learn more about further study and research in the LIS field by visiting the Department of Library and Information Science page, and our CityLIS blog.