South Carolina Library Science Degree Programs

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Updated on October 25, 2023
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South Carolina is a southern state next to Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee. South Carolina has hot summers and mild winters. It is a beautiful state with plenty of beaches, state parks, beach towns including Myrtle Beach, island towns including James Island and Hilton Head, lake towns, and large cities including Charleston and Columbia. They also have various small towns and close community towns away from tourist areas. Clemson is one of these towns, and it is a college town that many residents love, and they congregate around the Clemson Tigers. 

South Carolina offers great options in higher education for those pursuing a degree in library science. The University of South Carolina offers a bachelor’s degree in information science, a master’s degree in library and information science (MLIS), and a Ph.D. in information science. The American Library Association (ALA) has accredited the MLIS program. ALA sets the standard in librarianship in the U.S. and Canada. 

This article will highlight what to expect from each program in library and information science and the admissions process. It also looks at the opportunities for librarians in the largest cities in South Carolina and their educational opportunities. Additionally, the article covers how to become a librarian in the state and the career and salary opportunities available. 

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  • Top-Ranked MLIS Program
  • ALA-Accredited
  • Complete in 18 Months

Syracuse University

Master of Science in Library and Information Science Online


Syracuse University offers an online MS in Library and Information Science. The program can be completed in 18 months and includes the option to specialize in School Media. No GRE is required.*

  • ALA-Accredited Program
  • Top Faculty & Support
  • No GRE Required

University of Denver

Master of Library and Information Science Online


University of Denver’s Morgridge College of Education offers an online, ALA-accredited Master of Library and Information Science program. Learn from practitioners and gain the service-based skills needed to connect communities with information in the digital age. No GRE is required.*

  • Become a Literacy Leader
  • Top 10 M.Ed. Program
  • 100% Online

Arizona State University

Master of Arts in Education Online, Literacy Education Concentration


The Master of Arts in Education with a concentration in literacy education will equip you to be a literacy leader in any educational setting.*

  • ALA-Accredited Program
  • 2-Year Program
  • 100% Online

St. Johns University

Online Master of Science in Library and Information Science


Gain the advanced expertise that information specialist positions require with the online M.S. in Library and Information Science program from St. John’s University.*

Bachelor Programs in Information Science in South Carolina

There is one undergraduate degree in information science offered in South Carolina, and the University of South Carolina offers it. The career outlook for this degree is expected to grow by 28% within the next few years, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Additionally, graduates earn a large variety of careers with this degree. One example is a graduate from the program at the University of South Carolina who is now a Pilot for Envoy Air. 

Bachelor’s in Information Science at the University of South Carolina

An undergraduate degree in information science from the University of South Carolina includes coursework in data organization, information management, computer science, human-computer interaction, business management, information literacy, and more. Students also experience real-world problems and hold leadership roles through internships, community involvement, and research. The undergraduate degree is a total of 120 credit hours, which include core classes, degree courses, electives, and an internship. 

How to apply

To qualify for admission, students need a 2.25 GPA or higher on a 4.0 grading scale. Applicants need to fill out an online application and send in transcripts. Contact the undergraduate program for more information. 

ALA Accredited Library and Information Science (MLIS) Programs in South Carolina

The American Library Association (ALA) accredits the only MLIS degree in South Carolina. Accreditation means the degree meets the standards most employers are looking for when hiring librarians and information specialists. Students who graduate from an ALA-accredited program, know how to manage a library, organize information, conduct research, find information, and serve their community through information and technology. To learn more about this program and the opportunities it offers, keep reading. 

Master of Library and Information Science at the University of South Carolina

This degree is offered completely online and is a 36-credit hour degree. 18 hours are dedicated to core classes in library science and introduction to information organization, creation, and retrieval. Students will be competent in today’s technology, leadership, professional development, research, provisions in information services, and information organization. They also offer a certification track for those pursuing a career in school librarianship in South Carolina. Students can also add a minor in Informatics, which is the study of information technology and society’s relationship to it. 

How to apply 

Applicants need to create an online account and fill out an online application. Applicants also must submit transcripts, two letters of recommendation, and a resume. For the Fall 2023  semester, GRE scores are optional. 

Ph.D. in Library Science Programs in South Carolina

A doctoral degree in library and information science will give graduates expertise in the field of library science. During their degree and after they graduate, they will have the opportunity to publish scholarly research within this field. Many information science researchers are looking for more research on information technology, how society interacts with technology, how to serve communities with technology, and the best ways to produce and retrieve quality information. Additionally, doctoral students can become library directors and professors. 

Ph.D. in Library and Information Science at the University of South Carolina 

Ph.D. students must complete 54 credit hours, including 12 credit hours dedicated to the student’s dissertation. Students also must maintain a 3.0 GPA throughout the program. Some of the programs may be online, but 18 credit hours and three consecutive semesters must be taken on campus. Oral and written comprehensive exams are also required before graduating. Graduate students are studying a variety of topics and collaborating with other students and faculty members. 

How to apply

Applicants need a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 grading scale and the competency to write scholarly work. Applicants must submit an online application and pay the application fee. They must also submit an updated resume, three letters of recommendation, and all transcripts from other colleges. An interview will also take place before admittance into the program. 

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  • Top-Ranked MLIS Program
  • ALA-Accredited
  • Complete in 18 Months

Syracuse University

Master of Science in Library and Information Science Online


Syracuse University offers an online MS in Library and Information Science. The program can be completed in 18 months and includes the option to specialize in School Media. No GRE is required.*

  • ALA-Accredited Program
  • Top Faculty & Support
  • No GRE Required

University of Denver

Master of Library and Information Science Online


University of Denver’s Morgridge College of Education offers an online, ALA-accredited Master of Library and Information Science program. Learn from practitioners and gain the service-based skills needed to connect communities with information in the digital age. No GRE is required.*

  • Become a Literacy Leader
  • Top 10 M.Ed. Program
  • 100% Online

Arizona State University

Master of Arts in Education Online, Literacy Education Concentration


The Master of Arts in Education with a concentration in literacy education will equip you to be a literacy leader in any educational setting.*

  • ALA-Accredited Program
  • 2-Year Program
  • 100% Online

St. Johns University

Online Master of Science in Library and Information Science


Gain the advanced expertise that information specialist positions require with the online M.S. in Library and Information Science program from St. John’s University.*

How to Become a Librarian in South Carolina

The state of South Carolina requires public librarians to have a certificate. There are four levels of certification. The highest level is a professional librarian and they must have an MLIS degree from an ALA-accredited program and three years of professional library experience. A Provisional Professional librarian must have an MLIS degree that ALA accredits. A Pre-Professional Librarian must have a bachelor’s degree in any field and 18 semester hours of MLIS coursework from an ALA-accredited program. Provisional Pre-Professional Librarians need a bachelor’s degree in any field. Applicants for certification can apply online

What Else Can You Do with a Library Science Degree in South Carolina?

ZF Group in South Carolina employs 147,797 people. They are a research, design, development, and manufacturing company. They hire various types of engineers, accountants, data protection and information security consultants, and logistics facilitators. There are also large hospital groups and automobile companies that hire information specialists. 

For those wishing to go into the career field as a historical researcher and archivist, South Carolina is a great state full of rich American history. The South Carolina Department of Archives and History maintains many historical documents and materials. The department also provides information and services to educators and researchers. They have genealogy records, Native American records, and African American records. There are also various historical sites throughout the state that the department oversees. 

Charleston Library Degree Programs and Career Opportunities

There are 18 library branches as part of the Charleston Public Library System. The system offers outreach programs, and a mobile library sends books to neighbors and various facilities. They offer programs for school-age children and teens, business services, job search resources, South Carolina history, art, special collections, and events for teens, children, and adults. One program they offer on a regular basis is story time for young children. 

There are four colleges that are four-year colleges, and there are two more colleges that offer two-year programs. The College of Charleston is the largest college in Charleston, and they have over 9,000 undergraduate students. The college has two libraries, a special collections library, and a research center. They also offer students research appointments, various study rooms, and technology support. 

Columbia Library Degree Programs and Career Opportunities

There are 13 library branches that are a part of the Richland Library System, which is the library system in Columbia, South Carolina. Many of the library branches have children’s areas, maker spaces, meeting spaces, and teen areas. The larger library branches have courtyards, auditoriums, art galleries, and studios. The main library offers a farmer’s market at certain times of the week as well. The system has services in social work, career searching, various community resources, and a library of things for users to check out microscopes, various tools, and recreation items. They also staff librarians for the research in local materials and genealogy records. 

The largest university in Columbia, South Carolina, is the University of South Carolina. They have over 20,000 undergraduate students. They also offer master’s and doctoral programs. They are the only university in South Carolina that offers an MLIS degree accredited by ALA. They also offer a bachelor’s and a Ph.D. in Library and Information science. It is a great school for library science students, and they provide many librarian positions. 

Columbia also has Benedict College, Columbia College, Columbia International University, Fortis College, South University, and Midlands Technical College. 

Salary Opportunities in South Carolina for Librarians

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, South Carolina employs 1,940 librarians, and the median wage for librarians is $57,950 annually. Entry-level librarians make $35,500 on the lower end, and library directors and other high management positions make as high as $78,530 annually. Surrounding states have similar wages. Neighboring states also provide more librarian positions. North Carolina employs 4,010 librarians, and Georgia employs 3,640 librarians. 

Additional Links

For more information about library and information science go to https://www.ala.org/

For more information about libraries in South Carolina and the job opportunities, go to https://www.scla.org/

Library Science Degree Programs in Other States

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