There are a number of library degree programs available in Pennsylvania and across the United States. Visit some of these resources for more information.
- In general, here are some of the different options in obtaining a library degree:
- Library Technical Assistant certification--This may have a different name, but a certification usually means that you take around 5 classes and end up with a certificate or specialized diploma, usually from a community college or library association. A certificate is usually meant for a paraprofessional.
- Bachelor's degree in library science, information science, or library & information science--A bachelor's (undergraduate) degree from a 4-year college or university can be a useful step before obtaining a master's degree in the same field. You will often have to complete general education requirements (English, Math, Science, etc.) in your first year or two of study before studying libraries. A bachelor's degree is typically obtained with around 120 credits (30-40 classes).
- Master's degree in library science, information science, or library & information science--A master's (graduate) degree is from a university that offers library science as an advanced field of study. You must have obtained a bachelor's degree (usually in any field, but check the school's website for more information). The master's degree will focus solely on studying library science and can be completed in 2-4 years, depending on the program. Many advanced library positions, such as reference, acquisitions, cataloging, and management, requires a master's degree.
- Directory of ALA-Accredited Programs What does accreditation mean? The American Library Association (ALA) has released standards that graduate degree programs need to comply with. If the school programs meet all of the standards, they receive ALA-accreditation. You may see job advertisements that specify that applicants must have a master's degree from ALA-accredited schools.
- Pennsylvania programs accredited by ALA:
- If you want to become a school librarian (grades K-12), you will have a more specialized field of study, because school librarians often need teacher certification. You may need to do student teaching in a library as well.