UA School of Information

Welcome to the School of Information timeline. We hope you enjoy reading about how our school has evolved over the years.

The School of Information is a multidisciplinary academic department and professional school in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences focusing on the many aspects of information organization, management, or use and its impact on individuals and society. A combination of the School of Information Resources & Library Science (SIRLS) and the School of Information: Science, Technology, and Arts (SISTA), this new department plays host to faculty and students engaged in research and education around all facets of the information sciences, without regard for disciplinary boundaries.

1956-01-01 09:24:16

In the Beginning

Beginnings as an undergraduate component in school library science in College of Education.

1958-01-01 09:24:16

A New Major Created

First MEd degree with school library science major awarded.

1969-01-01 09:24:16

Library School Foundation

Graduate Library School founded. Donald C. Dickinson appointed first director of the new library school. Six part-time students admitted to the Master of Library Science (MLS) program.

1971-01-01 09:24:16

The First Master

Lawrence Clark Powell joined the faculty. First Master of Library Science degree awarded.

1973-01-01 09:24:16

Graduate Library Institute

Indian Graduate Library Institute began for Native Americans.

1974-01-01 09:24:16

ALA Accreditation

Program accredited by the American Library Association. School moved to its present location in the “pink motel.”

1975-01-01 09:24:16

GLISA founded

Graduate Library Institute for Spanish Speaking Americans (GLISA) founded and directed by Dr. Arnulfo Trejo.

1979-01-01 09:24:16

Accreditation Continues

Program reaccredited by the American Library Association. Ellen Altman appointed as director.

1984-01-01 09:24:16

New Acting Director

Margaret Maxwell appointed acting director.

1985-01-01 09:24:16

Administrative Move

School moved administratively into the Faculty of Social and Behavioral Sciences, later renamed the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS).

1986-01-01 09:24:16

New ALA Standards

MA degree reaccredited for four years under the new 1992 ALA Standards.

1996-01-01 09:24:16

A New Name: SIRLS

Changed to School of Information Resources and Library Science (SIRLS).

1998-01-01 09:24:16

Change of Department Heads

Director Charles Hurt named Associate Dean of SBS (July). Charles Seavey, Associate Professor at SIRLS, appointed Acting Director.

1999-01-01 09:24:16


Carla Stoffle, Dean of Libraries at UA, appointed Interim Director (July).

2000-01-01 09:24:16


University of Arizona withdrew its appeal; invited COA for a site visit in 2001 (May). COA granted SIRLS a two-year conditional accreditation beginning June 1, 2000. The First Law Fellow Began.

2001-01-01 09:24:16

Knowledge River Begins

Brooke Sheldon appointed Director (January). COA Accreditation site visit (October). Knowledge River Program Begins.

2002-01-01 09:24:16


ALA reaccreditation awarded for four years. Successful and positive Academic Program Review concluded.

2004-01-01 09:24:16

Director Bradley Appointed

Director Brooke Sheldon retired (May). Jana Bradley appointed Professor and Director at SIRLS (August).

2006-01-01 09:24:16

DigIn certificate program Begins

2006 ALA reaccreditation awarded for seven years. Digital Information Management Certificate Program (DigIn) Begins.

2009-01-01 09:24:16


Director Jana Bradley steps down; Tom Wilding appointed Interim Director. P. Bryan Heidorn appointed Director at SIRLS (October). MENAS (formerly NES) dual-degree program begins.

2010-01-05 12:54:44

A Video About SIRLS

Hear from faculty and students what SIRLS can offer.

2011-01-01 09:24:16

A New Master's Option

Archives Focus added as a Master’s option.

2012-01-01 09:24:16

e-society planning approved

Arizona Board of Regents approves planning of e-society undergraduate major. Joint Master’s degree with Journalism approved.

2013-01-28 09:24:16

SIRLS Granted 7-yr accreditation

SIRLS is granted 7-year accreditation by the COA of the ALA with no restrictions.

2013-02-05 04:10:43

eSociety approved by the faculty senate

Faculty Senate approved the creation of our new undergraduate program, eSociety,which will offer students the opportunity to pursue either a Bachelor of Arts degree in eSociety or an Undergraduate Minor degree in eSociety.

2013-05-19 21:21:43

Jana Bradley Retires

Jana Bradley, the prior Director of SIRLS has decided to retire effective May 19, wrapping up a forty-two year career of services to libraries and their communities. Jana came to SIRLS in 2004 and served as Director for 5 years immediately followed by a faculty position.

2013-07-24 06:07:18

Carla Stoffle retires as Dean of Libraries after 22 years

Carla J. Stoffle, Dean of University Libraries and Center for Creative Photography, has announced that she will be returning to the SIRLS faculty on July 1, 2013. Dean Stoffle came to the University of Arizona to become Dean in 1991, and during her tenure as dean, she has served as Acting Director of the Center for Creative Photography and SIRLS.

2013-08-26 08:00:43

eSociety classes begin; first majors accepted for Fall

eSociety began Fall 2013 with 6 majors and one minor declared. SIRLS began eSociety as a truly collaborative program, indeed, early planning for eSociety included colleagues from across the College of SBS as well as colleagues in other colleges, including those in the School of Information: Science, Technology, and the Arts (SISTA). This high degree of partnership across the campus and academic traditions (e.g., programming courses in SISTA alongside new social media courses offered in SIRLS) is unmatched in Arizona, and arguably nationwide.

2013-11-20 08:00:00

Learning the Archive: Knowledge River Graduate Assistants in Special Collections; Fall 2013

Each semester Special Collections hires two to three graduate assistants from Knowledge River, a program of the School of Information Resources and Library Sciences. Knowledge River encourages future information professionals to develop an awareness of Latino and Native American archival materials and a commitment to serve those populations. In this video, you'll explore the hidden recesses of Special Collections with three Knowledge River GAs, learn about what it's like to work in an archive, and discover what lures unsuspecting people into becoming archivists and librarians.

2014-06-03 08:00:00

Udall Foundation Graduate Assistants, Spring 2014

SIRLS and Knowledge River Scholars discuss their experiences as Udall Foundation Graduate Assistants in Special Collections at the University of Arizona Libraries.

2014-08-18 08:00:00

2 New Graduate Certificates

SIRLS has established 2 new graduate certificates: Law Librarianship and Legal Information and Scholarly Communication

2014-10-01 00:00:00

New Graduate Certificate

SIRLS is pleased to introduce a new graduate certificate: Medical and Community Health Information. This certificate has a secondary affiliation with the programs in the College of Nursing, including the MS in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Online Program. This is a fully online certificate program available through UA Online that provides students, librarians, information professionals, and health care professionals with the necessary skills in the acquisition and dissemination of useful, usable, and quality health information.

2015-05-11 00:00:00

M.S. Degree Approved

The School of Information is pleased to announce a second Master’s degree program! The M.S. in Information degree aims to produce generations of information professional and researchers who have the knowledge, skill, and ability to collaborate across disciplines to solve real world information problems and address grand information challenges of today and the future.

2015-07-01 00:00:00

Welcome the new School of Information

A combination of the School of Information Resources & Library Science (SIRLS) and the School of Information: Science, Technology, and Arts (SISTA), this new department plays host to faculty and students engaged in research and education around all facets of the information sciences, without regard for disciplinary boundaries. With this merge, the School of Information welcomes Kelland Thomas, Clayton Morrison, Shikhar Kumar, and Richard Thompson from the SISTA department!

2015-08-01 00:00:00

M.A. Degree Requirements Revised

The M.A. degree will now require students admitted in Fall 2015 and after to complete 37 credits for program.

2015-08-01 00:00:00

iSchool Application Submitted

Currently, the “school is applying to join the iSchools Organization, a collection of information schools dedicated to advancing the information field, which would make it the first iSchool in the Southwest.”

2015-10-01 00:00:00

New Administrative Assistant

The School of Information welcomes Lana Tupponce Real as its’ new Administrative Assistant.

2015-10-01 00:00:00

New Undergraduate Academic Advisor

The School of Information welcomes Randy Yazzie as its’ new undergraduate Academic Advisor.

2015-10-20 00:00:00

Future Directions in Digital Life and Learning

These leading panel of international experts bring substantial expertise from a range of social and humanistic sciences, representing the academic, public, and corporate sectors. This forum discusses the various aspects of building strong research infrastructures that bridge academic and non-academic sectors. Together, they will address key capacities needed in such infrastructures to foster critically important digital practices and literacies.

2015-12-10 00:00:00

“Pink Motel” Farewell

The School of Information honors 41 years of countless memories as the new School of Information checks out of the "pink motel" building located at 1515 E. 1st St and into the Harvill building!

2016-02-01 09:24:16

UA Creates Center for Digital Society and Data Studies

“One of the reasons the School of Information needed a center focused on data, digital culture, innovation, and social behavior was because the school is already a part of these larger conversations happening across disciplines,” said Catherine Brooks, an assistant professor of information and communication and the director of the new center.

UA School of Information

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