South Carolina Librarian Salary Guide - 2022

Last Reviewed: February 18th, 2022

School Librarians

How are school librarian salaries determined in South Carolina? 

School librarian salaries in the state of South Carolina follow the same principles that other states follow. Essentially, the salary is determined by the school library fund, which is, in turn, is determined by the size of the school, the area the school is in, and the number of students that it is servicing. Based on those determinants as well as the years that a librarian has worked within the school their salary is determined.

How can one increase their salary?

A school librarian’s salary usually increases the more time they spent in a school. Experience usually means higher earnings for school librarians. Sometimes, depending on your area and the size of your school further certification or more specialized positions may be available and those can also help increase your salary. 

Librarians and Media Specialists Salaries in urban areas of South Carolina

Metro Area # Employed Mean Salary
Charleston-North Charleston, SC 260 $68,290
Columbia, SC 510 $63,000
Florence, SC 120 $50,610
Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, SC 370 $63,970
Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort, SC 40 $57,520
Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, SC-NC 50 $51,860
Spartanburg, SC 80 $66,490
Sumter, SC 30 $46,190
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics - 2020

Librarians and Media Specialists Salaries in rural areas of South Carolina

Metro Area # Employed Mean Salary
Upper Savannah South Carolina nonmetropolitan area 90 $52,250
Lower Savannah South Carolina nonmetropolitan area 60 $50,880
Northeast South Carolina nonmetropolitan area 100 $49,050
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics - 2020

Government or non-profit resources within South Carolina providing assistance for better school librarian pay

The South Carolina Association of School Librarians is the main association available to school librarians who are wishing to lobby for better pay for school librarians. The South Carolina Association of School Librarians also advocates for better resources in school libraries. You can also advocate and lobby for better pay through the South Carolina Library Association. On their website you will find dedicated resources for advocacy that you can use, if you sign up you can also be a part of their meetings and interest groups.  

Public Librarians

How are public librarian salaries determined in South Carolina?

Public librarian salaries are determined by the size of the public library and the position that the individual holds within that library. Most large public libraries will have specialized or executive positions that offer better pay. A public librarian’s salary is also determined by the level of certification they hold and the years that they have spent in the field and position. 

How can one increase their salary?

The best way to increase your salary in a public library is by applying for higher-paid positions within the library that you are employed in. Special Collection librarians, archivists, and librarians in executive positions can all receive higher wages than front desk librarians would. 

Government or non-profit resources within South Carolina providing assistance for better public librarian pay

The South Carolina Library Association is the main resource available for those who wish to advocate and lobby for better public library pay. By contrast to other states, the state department of education website does not have any resources available regarding the public libraries in the area and their funding opportunities, but you can make a call to them and directly ask if there are any resources available on these topics. 

Academic Librarians

How are academic librarian salaries determined in South Carolina?

An academic librarian’s salary is determined by the institution that they are employed in. In this way, they differ from both public and school libraries since their salary is not determined by state funds. Most funding for academic libraries comes from the university’s funds, whether those come from state or private donations and they can help determine the salary of a librarian. The years, experience, and specialization a librarian has can also help determine their salary.

How can one increase their salary?

Academic libraries tend to offer a lot of opportunity for growth, especially because they tend to be larger than school and even public libraries. This means that for their running they need more specialized personnel that is often paid higher amounts. Most institutions also offer Promotion through Rank, which means that the longer you spent working for the institution the more opportunities for promotions you will get. These promotions often also come with a higher salary.

How can an academic librarian get tenured and how does this affect their lifetime earning potential?

In most universities to get tenured, you will need to be in the highest promotional rank and fulfill a set of guidelines that are provided by the university. Within these, you will also find the request that another member of faculty recommends you for tenure. Getting tenure means greater stability in your income, as tenured librarians are usually not able to be fired unless an extreme circumstance has occurred. Even in the case that they lose their job they still get higher compensation than non-tenured librarians would. This means that tenure can guarantee your salary and income and thus it can make it easier for you to wage your lifetime earnings. 

Government or non-profit resources within South Carolina providing assistance for better academic librarian pay

The main organization that you can lobby for better pay through as an academic librarian is the South Carolina Library Association, this association is dedicated to advocating for better conditions for library staff. You can also lobby within your university for better pay since in private institutions salaries are not imposed by the state but rather by the institution. This is why it might be best to lobby internally for better pay, as that strategy may prove to be more effective.