Placements & Salaries 2017: Survey Methods

LJ offered 51 accredited library and information science schools in the United States the opportunity to participate in the survey.

Survey Methods

LJ offered 51 accredited library and information science schools in the United States the opportunity to participate in the survey. Forty (one more than last year) completed our institutional survey, providing background on their 2016 graduates. Thirty schools elected to send their 2016 LIS graduates a link to the LJ web survey. Ten schools (four more than last year, each marked with *) conducted their own independent assessment of their graduates and shared some of these results with LJ: *Catholic University of America, San José State, Simmons College, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, *University of Michigan, UNC–Chapel Hill, *University of Southern Mississippi, *University of Texas–Austin, University of Washington, and University of Wisconsin–Madison. These results did not always include every question from LJ’s web survey.

The data analyzed for this article represents responses from 38% of the 4,223 graduates reported by 40 participating schools. Among the graduate surveys conducted by LJ, the response rate of graduates from each school ranged from a high of 69% to a low of 12%. Response rates among graduates reported by the independent school assessments ranged from 87% to 18%.

Four schools that did not participate last year were able to do so this year: Queens College, CUNY; Indiana University-Purdue; UT-Austin; and UW-Milwaukee.

We instituted a requirement this year that at least ten percent of a school’s graduating class must respond in order to be included in the results. Two programs did not quite reach the threshold: Louisiana State and University of California–Los Angeles. The following nine schools declined to participate, did not respond to calls for participation, or had no graduate participation: Dominican University, East Carolina University, Emporia State, Kent State, North Carolina Central University, University of Arizona, University of Denver, University of Pittsburgh, and University of Rhode Island.

Canadian LIS programs conduct their own assessments and do not participate in the annual LJ survey. This includes programs at Alberta, British Columbia, Dalhousie, McGill, Montreal, Toronto, and Western Ontario. The University of Puerto Rico also does not participate.


This report is intended to provide insight into the graduates’ experiences entering the job market and identify potential trends in comparison to prior years of the study. It is not a comprehensive examination of all employment outcomes. The applicability of the survey findings is limited in that graduates’ participation in the study is self-selected rather than a representative sample, and some respondents may not answer all of the questions. Data from some LIS schools may be incomplete, and other schools chose not to participate. Not all LJ-administered surveys are complete because graduates were allowed to skip any question on the survey or leave the survey without completing it.

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