5 Best Library Science Degrees

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Before the time of social media and online books, people actually had to go to a library if they wanted to know the answer to something.

While we might not realize it today, libraries have transformed modern day society. Literacy rates have been improved, more people are informed about their rights, and communities have developed a place for engaging activities. The first libraries were created with the goal of organizing collections of documents. Overtime strategies of how to catalogue and manage information were developed, and thus the field of Library Science emerged.

Students interested in studying Library Science not only have a passion for books and reading, but also for engaging the community.

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What type of Bachelor’s in Library Science can you get?

Although Library Science degrees are mostly at the graduate level, several schools offer a Bachelor’s degree. The most common will be a Bachelor of Science in Library Science or Information Science. These programs are usually multidisciplinary in nature and will require students to take a variety of core courses, major courses related to Library Science, and electives. Programs are offered on-campus or online.

An online program may be ideal for students who do not have the time for traditional on-campus programs. Online degrees are held via video chat and coursework is taken on one’s own time. Those who think they may be suited for an online degree should contact the school to find out what their requirements are.

Ready for a Master’s degree? See our ranking of the 35 Best Master’s in Library Science.

How much money do people with a Bachelor’s in Library Science make?

According to PayScale, those with a BS degree in Library and Information Science earn an average salary of $59,000. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay of librarians across the nation as of 2018 is $59,050. However, depending on location, those just starting out can earn as low as $39,799. Head librarians can make as much as $82,098.

Within this field, library directors make the most money, with a few people on PayScale reporting their income to be as much as $99,526. Other salaries in this field include: curator ($42,000 to $86,000), archivist ($45,000 to $80,000), and medical librarian ($34,286 to $55,631).

What can you do with a Bachelor’s in Library Science?

The most common career upon graduation is to become a librarian either at a school or in a community library. Although most librarians do hold a Master’s degree, some positions may be open to those with only a Bachelor’s. Other than being a librarian, any jobs relating to cataloging information, developing literacy programs, or managing information systems are career possibilities. Some examples are:

  • Research analyst
  • Internet trainer
  • Senior program manager
  • Taxonomist

What are the requirements for a Bachelor’s in Library Science?

Applicants must hold a high school diploma or GED from an accredited school. Students should aim to have the strongest GPA possible, with at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Other than transcripts, schools will require letters of recommendation, personal essays, and SAT or ACT scores. Because Library Science is generally a more liberal arts degree, colleges will not require any specific courses to be taken, but showing that you have taken a variety of advanced subjects will make one’s application stand out.

Throughout the program, students will learn a variety of subjects other than just the ins and outs of libraries. They will also learn about cataloging, research methodologies, program enactment, and digital preservation. As technology in libraries is fundamental nowadays, strong skills in computers and other systems are a plus.

What are the Best Bachelor’s in Library Science?

We’ve found that the best degrees are those that offer not only fair prices, but ample flexibility and convenience as well! To find the best degrees for you, we look at the best schools in the country based on reputation, student satisfaction, program quality, and return on investment. Then we review the bottom line – just how much is this going to cost? Check out our methodology page for a more in-depth description of our data.

Once we determine all of the above, we curate a list of stellar schools for you! These not only represent the best degrees you can get, but also ones that will fit your budget. Check out our picks below!

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