How to Become a School Library Media Specialist in New Jersey

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The NJCU Educational Technology Department offers one of the largest School Library Media Specialist Programs in New Jersey, with award-winning graduates working in every county in the state.  Check out FAQ below and news and media about our students and alum. 

If you already have a NJ teaching license, you can enter our Associate School Library Media Specialist Certification program (24 credits) or get the Full School Library Media Specialist Certification by getting an MA in Educational Technology with School Library Media Specialization (36 Credits). 

Yes, you would need to have a bachelor’s degree and be admitted to our Associate School Library Media Specialist Certification program (24 credits) or our MA in Educational Technology with School Library Media Specialization (36 Credits) You would need to take an additional nine-credit sequence of educational courses.  We offer these three courses every two years in Summer I.   Here are the additional courses you will need to take:

EDTC 647

Educational Theory and Curriculum Design for the School Library Media Specialist (3 credits)

EDTC 648

Student Learning Development and Behavior Management for the School Library Media Specialist (3 credits)

EDTC 649

Teaching Methodologies for the School Library Media Specialist (3 credits)

 

 

Basically, with the Associate SLMS you need to be under the supervision of an administrator and with the full SLMS you can run the library by yourself.   Schools interpret this in a variety of ways.  Suffice it to say, graduates with both of these certifications get jobs in school libraries.  Below is the exact wording from the Department of Education:

Associate Library Media Specialist

“The associate school library media specialist (ASLMS) endorsement is required for anyone who serves as a school library media specialist in all public schools under the supervision of a certified school administrator, principal or supervisor” (https://www.state.nj.us/education/license/endorsements/2845CEAS.pdf

School Library Media Specialist

“The school library media specialist (SLMS) endorsement is required for any person who serves as a school library media specialist in all public schools”

(https://www.state.nj.us/education/license/endorsements/2855CE.pdf)

Technically, only a school district can make the request on behalf of an applicant and goes through the county office of education, not directly through the State Department of Education.  An emergency certification will allow a person without certification to work in a school library.  You must have a bachelor’s degree to apply. Emergency certification is given at any time during the academic year but will expire on July 31 regardless of when it was issued. It can be renewed up to two times and cannot last more than three years. It can be renewed only if there is progress toward to certification.   The school district that wants to hire a school librarian will have to apply for an emergency certificate through a local county office of educationFor more information see pages 27-28 here: https://www.state.nj.us/education/code/current/title6a/chap9b.pdf

Fall (early September), Fall 2 (mid-October), Winter (late December), Spring (late January), Spring 2 (mid-March), Summer 1 (late May), Summer 2 (early July), Summer 3 (late July)

For the 24-credit Associate School Library Certification you need a 150-hour supervised internship experience.  For the full School Library Certification you need an additional 75 hours of advanced field work.  Both of these are 3-credit courses within your program.  They involve supervised work at a school library and a set of assignments for the course.  The majority of candidates do the internship and advanced field experience during their lunch or prep period at the school they work at or at a local school library. 

For the MA with School Library Media Specialization, you can transfer up to 9 credits, if they have not been applied to another degree.  You cannot apply transfer credits to the 24-credit certification program.  For more details, see Graduate Transfer Credits in our Catalog.

You can apply here to our 36-credit MA with School Library Specialization or our 24-credit Associate School Library Certification

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Contact us and have an advisor get back to you within 48 hours.