About Us

Beta Phi Mu, the library and information studies honor society, was founded at the University of Illinois in August, 1948 by a group of leading library and information professionals and educators to recognize and encourage scholastic achievement among library and information studies students.

Our name comes from the initials of the Greek words Bibliothekarios philax mathesis, meaning “librarians are the guardians of knowledge.” Our motto, Aliis inserviendo consumor, meaning “Consumed in the service of others” was selected by the founders based on the concept of the dedication of librarians and other information professionals to the service of others.

In 1969, Beta Phi Mu was formally admitted to membership in the Association of College Honor Societies. In 1998, Beta Phi Mu became an official affiliate to the American Library Association.

Beta Phi Mu houses its archival collection in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign archives. The Graduate School of Library and Information Sciences is home to Alpha Chapter, the original chapter of Beta Phi Mu. To see more information about the Archives use this link: Archives.