The Sambalpur University Act was passed by the Orissa Legislature on 10th December, 1966 and the University started functioning from 1st January, 1967. The Postgraduate Departments of Sambalpur University offer P. G. Diploma, MA, M.Sc., M. Tech, M. Phil., Ph.D., and D.Litt./D.Sc. degrees. All the departments are actively involved in research and well equipped for research facilities for NET/JRF/GATE students. Many P. G. Departments have been recognized as Centers of Excellence and have been receiving special grants for conducting cutting edge research. The central library of the university holds a large collection of books, journals, theses, and reference documents along with access to a-resources from INFLIBNET. The University has received 'Think Odisha Leadership Awards-2013' from the Chief Minister of Odisha for its remarkable contribution to the betterment of the State.
Established in 1976 as the first LIS School in Odisha, the P. G. Department of Library & Information Science has achieved excellence in teaching and research. The Department has been inducted under DRS-SAP of UGC during the period (2002-07). The Department imparts a two-year Masters Level Programme in Library & Information Science (MLISc), One-year Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.) and Ph.D. in Library & Information Science as regular courses. It also conducts One-Year P. G. Diploma in Library Automation and Networking (PGDLAN) and One-Year P. G. Diploma in Mass Communication & Journalism (MC&J) under Distance Education Mode. The alumni of this Department have been serving in almost all the national level institutions in the country including IIMs, IITs, NITs, CSIR, ICSSR & ICAR laboratories/institutions and abroad as well. The Course Curriculum has been updated as per the requirements of the industry and their libraries.
The post-graduate department of library and information science of the Sambalpur University has been the first of its kind in the state of Orissa, catering to the professional expertise by offering library and information science education to the youth of Orissa. The university grants commission made provisions for setting of the department during the fifth plan period and accordingly, the Sambalpur University introduce one year Bachelor’s Course in Library and Information Science in the year 1976-77 with the sanctioned intake of 16 students. 50% of the seats were earmarked for in-service untrained librarians. This department thus came in existence with Dr. R.K Rout as its head and the founder teacher Dr. Rout has been the guiding spirit at every stage of its development, since its inception.
Three years after its inception the nomenclature of this department was changed from library science to library and information science as per the suggestions made by the University Grants Commission in the year 1979. The curriculum was restructured, revised and upgraded to match the quality and standard else where, to cope up with the latest advances made in the field at the international level. The steady improvement in its quality and standard paved way for master degree course in library and information science, and the department has been imparting teaching at master's level since 1985 with the sanctioned intake of 08 students. Another landmark of development took place by the initiative Prof. R.K Rout, Head of the department and the faculty by introduction of M.Phil course in the subject with sanctioned intake of 05 students in 1994 for the first time eastern India, which speaks volumes about the dedications of its faculty members to the steady growth and expansion of the department and its academic excellence comparable in eastern region of our country. This new course has enabled the ambitious professionals of the region to realize their goal by perusing this pre-doctoral degree course and prepare themselves for the highest degree in this faculty by discovering new horizons of knowledge.
In the year 1995, the department shifted to its own new building. This is the latest departmental building of its kind in the eastern India funded by the University Grants Commission and Govt. of Orissa. The Department introduced two years integrated course in the year 2000, for the first time in eastern India. The curriculum as suggested by UGC-CDC with modification and up gradation was designed and introduced.
The pass out alumni of this department are associate with the department & themselve with this Alumni Association