Can I Get a Library Science Degree Online?

If you’re interested in becoming a librarian, you may be considering where to pursue your degree and if it’s possible to do so online. It’s absolutely possible to get a library science degree online. For this profession, a Master’s of Library Science is the most common degree. Many library science schools that are accredited by the American Library Association have online programs available. Read on to learn more about choosing an online library science degree program as well as more about the library profession.

Best Online Library Science Degrees

Of the top ranked library science programs by U.S. News and World Report, several have online programs available. These include Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA (#10), University of Illinois, Urbana (#1), Syracuse University (#3), and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (#2). When choosing an online library science program, first consider finding a school that’s accredited by the American Library Association. You should also find a program with extensive content focused on the area of library science you plan to practice (for example, academic, government, public, children’s). Most programs take a year to complete on a full-time basis or longer if you choose to go part time.

The Career of a Librarian

There are many different areas of library science to focus on, with a range of positions available for those who earn this degree. Regardless of the field, the key role of a librarian is to find information. They organize materials and develop databases as well as plan events and programs for library patrons and teach classes about information management and related topics. In many cases, they are also responsible for the overall management and administration of the library, with tasks such as preparing budgets and supervising junior staff.

Salary and Job Outlook for Librarians

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, librarians earn an average annual salary of just over $55,000 per year. Salaries are highest for college and university librarians, followed by school librarians, those who work for the government and in the public sector, and those that work in hospitals. However, job growth in this field is generally slow, with a 7 percent projection of new jobs by 2022 (slower than the average growth of other occupations). This is attributable to the increased availability of user-friendly online resources as well as a lack of funds in many library budgets to hire more staff members. In addition, many people with a library science degree choose to work in research or management in another field.

Despite the high level of competition for jobs in this field, a degree in library science is still a worthwhile investment to those who are dedicated to building a career in this realm. While many online programs exist, the structure of them varies. For example, some programs are completely online, while others may require some component of in-person instruction. The American Library Association is the best place to start if you want to learn more about getting a library science degree online.

Ready to take the next step? Find out more about funding your graduate school education at: What Kind of Financial Aid is Available for Graduate School?