The University of Texas at Austin's School of Information has joined leading schools in the information field to extend their reach beyond the traditional classroom in order to broaden the educational opportunities for students. The WISE consortium uses advanced technology to enrich education and foster relationships among students, faculty and universities.

The vision of this initiative is to provide a collaborative, cost-effective distance education model that will increase the quality, access, and diversity of online education opportunities in Library and Information Science.


The WISE program began as a joint effort between Syracuse University and the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. The program focused on developing faculty training for online pedagogy, standards and metrics for high-quality online library and information science (LIS) education, and a collaborative marketplace for online LIS courses. The WISE consortium aims to increase the quality, access, and diversity of online educational opportunities. The initiative is part of a two-year, $713,492 grant received by Syracuse University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). There are now seventeen schools in the consortia.


Why Become a WISE Student?

Qualified iSchool students have the opportunity to access distance education courses through WISE member schools that have met a quality bar in online education. WISE students have access to ten times the number of special topics and electives.

For example, a student interested in digital libraries may access expertise from a wider base of faculty and research than may be normally available within his or her home school. A professional who is working on his or her degree will have greater flexibility in scheduling and have a multitude of options when considering specialized topics.

The WISE student will have the ability to select from a wide array of online courses, regardless of his or her location, and take courses with faculty who are highly regarded in their area of expertise.

How to Apply to be a WISE Student

If you are interested, think you qualify, and want to register for a class, please send your application to the iSchool's WISE contact.

To qualify to take a WISE course you must:

  1. Be a School of Information graduate student
  2. Have completed a minimum of 9 semester credit hours prior to start of the WISE class
  3. Have a minimum of a 3.5 GPA
  4. Be comfortable learning and communicating in an online environment
  5. Have convenient access to computer and network connectivity
  6. No more than six semester credit hours of WISE courses (INF 381W) may be used for the MSIS program of study
  7. Complete the application (Doc | PDF)
  8. Sign the statement of agreement
  9. Collect required signatures
  10. Deliver form or email as an attachment to:
    Carla Criner
    1616 Guadalupe, #5.202
    Austin, TX 78701-1213

Once the application has been approved, students will be registered for INF 381W with Carla Criner as the faculty sponsor.

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