iSchool in No. 2 spot in U.S. News rankings

By Doug Parry Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The University of Washington Information School held the No. 2 spot in the latest rankings of U.S. master’s degree programs in library and information science by U.S. News & World Report. The rankings of “America’s Best Graduate Schools” were released March 30.

“This ranking is based on the input of our peers across the country, and a ranking of No. 2 means that they continue to see our Master of Library and Information Science as a leading national program,” iSchool Dean Anind Dey said. “I give credit to the program's leadership, faculty, staff and students who work every day to make our program better.” 

The iSchool rose steadily up the rankings through the past two decades, reaching No. 2 in the last iteration of the U.S. News rankings in 2017.

Professor Michelle Martin, the MLIS program chair, credited the iSchool faculty’s dedication and the hands-on experience the program gives students through directed fieldwork and community-based research.

“This ranking recognizes the excellent teaching that happens in the MLIS program and the faculty’s commitment to helping students develop as culturally competent leaders who understand the importance of ‘inward gazing’ to serve diverse communities well,” she said. “As we constantly work on improving the teaching, research and service in the MLIS program, we’re intentional about remaining a ‘high-touch’ program where students know the faculty care and want them to succeed.” 

In addition to ranking No. 2 overall in a tie with the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, the iSchool placed highly in several of the specialty areas. U.S. News ranked it second in Information Systems, tied for second in Digital Librarianship, tied for third in Health Librarianship, tied for fifth in Services for Children and Youth, and 11th in School Library Media. The UW ranks No. 1 in Law Librarianship, which was not reranked this year.

To create the rankings, U.S. News surveys deans, program directors and select senior faculty of more than 50 accredited library and information science programs. Questionnaires, sent in fall 2020, asked individuals to rate the academic quality of each institution’s programs on a scale of 1 (marginal) to 5 (outstanding).

Dozens of other UW schools and departments placed highly in the 2022 rankings, including medicine, nursing, education, public health and public affairs.

Pictured at top: MLIS students (from left) Amanda Chin, Fatima Machado, Annabella Abrao and J. Clare Morrison show their project at Capstone 2019.