The Fast Track program is an accelerated degree program for the iSchool’s Master in Information Management (IM) or the MS in Library and Information Science (LIS), including the school media specialization.
Fast Track allows students to receive the IM or LIS degree in just one year of full-time graduate study by taking their graduate courses in their senior undergraduate year.
Unlike other accelerated or 4+1 programs, Fast Track also gives you the option to enter the workforce after graduation and complete the remainder of your program online and part-time.
Fast Track is available to all junior standing Syracuse University undergraduate students. It is also available to undergraduate students from our partnership schools:
- Lemoyne College
- Mercyhurst University
- Stonehill College
Syracuse University undergraduate students that have junior standing (between 54–83 total cumulative credits) are eligible for Fast Track.
We encourage you to apply by February 1 or earlier; however, the deadline to both indicate interest and apply is May of your junior year.
Fast Track Timeline
- Complete the online application for admission to the graduate programs.
- If a Syracuse University student: With your academic advisor, complete an academic plan for your senior year. Submit a copy of your academic plan to Tess Schaufler (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Jose Tavarez (email@example.com)
- Notification of admission is on a rolling basis. Admission to the graduate program will be conditional based on completion of the undergraduate program.
Spring and Summer of Junior Year
- If a Syracuse University student: Make an appointment with Tess Schaufler (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Jose Tavarez (email@example.com) to register for your Fast Track summer courses.
- Enroll in Summer Gateway Courses (IST 601 and IST 621 for IM; IST 601 and IST 511 for LIS), which are delivered on campus and in a condensed mode in July.
- Syracuse iSchool BS in Information Management and Technology (SU IM&T) students are not required to take IST 601 or IST 621, so summer registration is optional.
Fall and Spring of Senior Year
- Enroll in IST 614 (3 credit hours) and IST 618 (3 credit hours). LIS School Media Specialization students should seek
advisingon fall and course selection
- You should take one course each semester. Campus or online options are available.
- SU IM&T students are not required to take IST 614 and may choose another course with approval from your academic advisor.
Summer or Fall after Graduation
- Submit an official degree-bearing transcript to Syracuse University Graduate School Enrollment Management.
- After receipt of your transcript and upon validation that you are in good academic standing, you will officially enter the MS in Information Management program, or the MS in Library and Information Science program.
- The remainder of the program can be completed within one year (3 terms) if you study full-time.
- Once you reach graduate standing, you are eligible to apply for the iSchool's merit-based scholarships. No need-based financial aid is provided at the graduate level.
- If preferable, you can complete the program part-time, and/or in the online mode. Even students who pursue full-time job opportunities after completing their undergraduate degree can continue to complete their M.S. part-time in the online mode.
Frequently Asked Fast Track Questions
Can the federal loans I use to pay for my undergraduate courses also pay for my graduate-level courses?
No. Loans from government agencies intended for undergraduate education cannot be used to fund graduate courses.
Can I use my graduate courses to count toward my undergraduate degree?
No. Graduate courses cannot be used to meet credit requirements for an undergraduate degree if they are applied to a graduate degree.
Am I considered a graduate student once I start taking graduate courses?
No. You enroll in the outlined graduate courses as an undergraduate student. After receiving your bachelor’s degree, your graduate credits will be applied to your graduate program. Only then are you considered a graduate student.
When can I start taking my graduate courses?
Once you are admitted to the Fast Track program, you may begin taking courses the summer before your undergraduate senior year.
What courses should I register for?
You should register for only the courses outlined in the timeline prior to obtaining your undergraduate degree. The only exception is for Syracuse University iSchool IM&T students, who can choose alternate courses with the approval of their academic advisor.
How many graduate credits can I take while still a full-time undergraduate?
You are allowed to take a maximum of 10 graduate courses as an undergraduate, typically taking 4 credits over the summer, 3 credits in the Fall semester, and 3 credits in the Spring semester. During the academic year you may take one graduate course (3 credit hours) in addition to your full time undergraduate course load.
Questions? Contact us!