ALA and AASL: Assuring Quality in School Librarianship Education Programs

The 2010 ALA/AASL Standards for Initial Preparation of School Librarians were approved by the Specialty Areas Studies Board (SASB) of the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)  on October 24, 2010. 

All programs submitting initial program reports must use the ALA/AASL Standards for Initial Preparation of School Librarians (2010), approved by NCATE in 2010. Programs submitting revised or response-to-conditions reports may continue to use the 2003 ALA/AASL Standards for Initial Programs for School Library Media Specialist Preparation if the initial report used the same standards.

The 2010 standards consist of five standards, each with four elements. The five standards are Teaching for Learning, Literacy and Reading, Information and Knowledge, Advocacy and Leadership, and Program Management and Administration. Each standard is followed by a rubric for use by reviewers, a research piece to support that standard, and references.


Also available are the 2010 standards with supporting items (introduction, NCATE state partnerships, training for faculty and states, reviewer criteria and training, etc.).


Please Note: In July of 2013, NCATE and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) consolidated to form the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). Under this consolidation, NCATE became a subsidiary of CAEP maintaining its recognition by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation for the purpose of maintaining the accreditation of educator preparation providers until such time as said providers come up for accreditation under CAEP.


For school librarians, the appropriate first professional degree is either of the following:

The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) works with educators and practitioners from the school library community to conduct reviews of school librarianship education programs in cooperation with CAEP.

Through this review process, ALA/AASL has the opportunity to influence not only the pre-service education of the majority of school librarians who are educated in non-ALA accredited programs, but also to help teachers and administrators develop appropriate expectations for school librarians in Information Age schools.

AASL School Library program review information

AASL only recognizes master's programs. Program reviews are conducted as a part of NCATE's unit accreditation process.