Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Community-based Librarianship

This fall 2020, the College of Computing & Informatics (CCI) at Drexel University will offer a new Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Community-based Librarianship (CBL). This Certificate program is designed for those interested in developing impactful skills within areas such as user and community engagement and services, information and data services, digital technology services, and public or academic librarianship.

The CBL Certificate program may serve as an entry point to the Master of Science in Information program, which features graduate majors in Digital Content Management, Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience (UX), and Library & Information Science (ALA accredited).

Community-based Librarianship Certificate Program Features

  • Offered online and on campus
  • Open to applicants who hold a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Ideal for paraprofessionals and library assistants who are considering enrolling in a Master’s in Library & Information Science (LIS) program
  • Culminates in a capstone project to allow students to apply learned concepts to real-world, community-based information projects and challenges
  • Credits earned in this certificate will be fully transferable to the Drexel’s Master of Science in Information (MSI) program

Community-based Librarianship Certificate Coursework

Certificate students will complete three courses focused on library and community collaboration (over three academic quarters):

  • INFO 546 - Data Analytics for Community-Based Data and Service: In this course, students will develop civic engagement skills for community needs assessment, community project development, data-driven decision making, and community-based communication. They will determine the key steps and associated challenges of data analytics for selected domain problems, use oral and written communication skills to interact with a range of audiences through democratic, participatory engagement, choose analytics tools for loading, aggregating, analyzing, and visualizing data for community projects, and develop partnerships with local community organizations to address data-invoked problems.
  • INFO 547 - Design Thinking for Digital Community Service: In this course, students and professionals will work together to identify a community-based digital information need and design a collaborative program to address that need. Students will learn to explain the major concepts and processes of community information needs analysis, describe the major elements of design thinking, with particular focus on digital information service design, identify a significant information service need within the target community, and work collaboratively to design a problem-based information service to address the identified need.
  • INFO 890 - Community Service Capstone Project: Explores information practices as an open-ended team activity. Initiates and completes an in-depth individual or multi-term capstone study emphasizing information processes, design thinking, or technology to service people and/or organizations. The Capstone explores information and data-related issues and challenges involved in the application domain of the individual or team’s choice. Applies a development process structure for project planning, specification, design, implementation, evaluation, final report, and individual reflective piece. Research focused capstones must have a designated faculty mentor in additional capstone faculty coordinator.

Funding Available

The CBL Certificate is supported in part by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). In the first two years, six or more students will receive full tuition scholarships for the Certificate. Tuition discounts up to 25% may also be available (students must apply for discounts before academic term begins).

Learn More

Stay tuned to this page for updates on application and admissions information. To learn more about the Community-based Librarianship Certificate program, please contact us at

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