Law librarians work in various legal settings, including law schools, private law firms, government libraries, federal, state, and local courts, and corporations. Many of these job environments prefer or require that librarians have both a master's degree in library science and a law degree. These educational requirements reflect increasing complexities of the legal system and legal research and the greater use of information systems. Librarians working in other settings draw on a legal education to support research in political science, government documents, and other areas. Many librarians find that a combined background in librarianship and law helps them manage copyright and licensing, human resources, and general administration issues.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is home to both the top rated school of information and library science and one of the top rated public law schools in the country. These two schools have joined forces to create a program where the J.D. and M.S.L.S. or M.S.I.S. degrees may be earned in four years by enrollment in the dual degrees program offered by the School of Law and the School of Information and Library Science. Admission to each school must be gained independently and all of the core courses and degree requirements for the J.D. and for the M.S.L.S. or the M.S.I.S. must be met for dual degrees to be awarded.
For the program's first year, candidates must take the complete, prescribed first-year curriculum in either law or library and information science, and, in the second year, that of the other school. The third and fourth years consist of prescribed and elective courses in both schools. The J.D. and one of the master's degrees can be completed in 113 semester hours, with a minimum of 74 credits drawn from law courses and a minimum of 39 credits from library and information science courses. For further information, see J.D./M.S.L.S or J.D./M.S.I.S. Program Structure or contact Anne Klinefelter by email email@example.com or by phone 919-962-1049.
Visit the home pages of the Carolina School of Law and the UNC School of Information and Library Science for additional information about the schools. See the American Association of Law Libraries site for more information about Education For a Career in Law Librarianship.