Bachelor's Degree in Library Science: Program Summary
Learn about the requirements and courses for a bachelor's degree program in library science. Find out about some popular career choices, as well as continuing education options for graduate level studies.
Library science trains students in modern library administration. Being a librarian most always requires a master's degree, but there are also bachelor's degree programs in library science that can lead to other jobs in the field, including work in public, school, corporate, military, museum or special research libraries.
There are no specific prerequisites for entering a bachelor's program in library science. Courses provide training on the workings of a modern library, including how to organize and manage media. There is also room for students to focus on their particular interests. For example, those who want to teach in a school library could earn a bachelor's degree in education with an emphasis on or certificate in library science. Another choice is a degree in information science or liberal arts with a focus on library studies. A bachelor's library science degree can also provide a pathway to library graduate school.
Graduating with a bachelor's degree in library science requires four years of study, during which students learn about modern library tools and procedures used in collecting and maintaining informational media specific to their library's specialties. Basic courses include:
- Literature studies
- Basic computer programs
- Database types and functions
- Classification and cataloging systems
- Resource management tools and strategies
- Information media types and uses
- Library administration procedures
- Media selection and purchasing
Popular Career Options
Recipients of a bachelor's degree in library science qualify for library support positions. Depending on the library, students may fill some of these positions while still in school. For example, library pages have no education requirements because they are only responsible for returning and organizing media on their appropriate shelves.
- Library assistants
- Library technicians
- Library clerks
- Associate librarian
Continuing Education Information
Most institutions that offer a bachelor's in library science also provide a master's program. Some colleges with only a library science bachelor's program provide articulation agreements with another university for students to complete a Master of Library Science or a Ph.D. program. Students may choose to expand their knowledge base in related areas though courses in a target area like management or educational media. The American Library Association (www.ala.org) mentioned that managing positions generally require a master's degrees or higher, though some libraries have been known to waive this requirement under certain circumstances.
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