South Carolina Teacher Colleges and Degrees Online Guide

This guide to schools of education in South Carolina is designed to help aspiring teachers find the best teacher preparation program to become certified teachers. In order to teach in South Carolina, teachers must complete a program at an accredited school approved by the board of education for certification. Fortunately, there are many colleges and universities in the state that offer degree programs. For useful information on the various teaching degrees offered in South Carolina, take a look at our lists of top-rated teaching programs, table of accredited, state-approved teacher preparation programs, and student reviews. This guide can help prospective students looking to work in education as well as those looking to change their current career find the best program for their goals.

Table of Contents

Quick Facts

For not-for-profit schools with teacher degree programs.

Comparison of South Carolina Schools with Teacher Preparation Programs

We have designed the following table to help you compare teacher preparation programs in South Carolina according to various factors. All of the schools included are not-for-profit institutions approved by the South Carolina Department of Education for the preparation of teachers. Completing a state-approved teacher preparation program is an important step towards earning licensure.

While accreditation from the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is not a requirement for licensure, it is included in the following table as CAEP provides a highly-regarded accreditation that is accepted in many states.

You will also find data on teacher preparation program enrollment, completion, and licensing exam pass rates by institution, for both traditional and alternative programs, for the 2019-2020 academic year in this table. These data points are collected from annual US Department of Education reports under Title II (Teacher Quality) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which holds institutions and state departments of education accountable for increasing academic achievement through improvements in teacher quality. Traditional teacher preparation programs are usually completed as part of a bachelor’s degree program. Alternative certification programs are typically designed for career changers looking to enter the field and lead to a postgraduate certificate or a master’s degree. Many schools in our table offer both traditional and alternative programs. Take a look at our South Carolina traditional and alternative certification guides for more information.

Finally, we have provided the net price per year for undergraduate tuition, based on the cost of attendance (tuition, books, room and board, and related expenses) for students who qualify for in-state tuition and fees, less the average financial aid award (including grants and scholarships).

State-Approved SchoolCAEP Accred.?5Trad. Teacher Program Enrollment6Trad. Teacher Prep Prog. Completers6Trad. Licensing Exams Pass Rate6Alt. Teacher Program Enrollment6Alt. Teacher Prep Prog. Completers6Alt. Licensing Exams Pass Rate6Net Price1
Allen UniversityNo$13,858
Anderson UniversityYes36112384%$21,576
Benedict CollegeYes4$12,155
Bob Jones UniversityNo2205396%$15,669
Charleston Southern UniversityYes585888%$17,496
Claflin UniversityYes348N.Av.$20,806
Clemson UniversityYes5739595%$22,935
Coastal Carolina UniversityYes30115097%$14,716
Coker UniversityNo167N.Av.$16,647
College of CharlestonYes46814093%$20,351
Columbia CollegeYes2133786%2314N.Av.$20,277
Columbia International UniversityNo281894%$18,651
Converse UniversityNo1726785%1$25,534
Erskine CollegeYes189N.Av.$35,573
Francis Marion UniversityYes4886698%$12,380
Furman UniversityYes5613100%$37,761
Lander UniversityYes626290%$15,541
Limestone UniversityYes3410100%$24,967
Morris CollegeYes1$16,326
Newberry CollegeYes542370%$20,205
North Greenville UniversityYes2436498%$20,627
Presbyterian CollegeYes1687%$21,959
South Carolina State UniversityYes2020N.Av.$20,022
Southern Wesleyan UniversityYes13829100%$18,614
The CitadelYes8918100%$17,920
University of Southern Carolina-AikenYes2115570%$12,689
University of Southern Carolina-BeaufortYes482688%$16,748
University of South Carolina-ColumbiaYes1,05329389%$21,784
University of Southern Carolina-UpstateYes30415084%$15,074
Winthrop UniversityYes42615699%$19,300
Wofford CollegeNo$30,431

  • — indicates none or not applicable.
  • N.Av. indicates data was not available or pass rates were omitted for confidentiality.

Top-Ranked Schools with Education Programs in South Carolina

US News & World Report’s Best Graduate Education Programs 2023

  • Clemson University (#71 tie)
  • University of South Carolina (#87 tie)
  • South Carolina State University (#207-274)

US News & World Report’s Best Online Master’s in Education Programs 2022

  • Clemson University (#1)
  • University of South Carolina (#20 tie)
  • Southern Wesleyan University (#69 tie)
  • Anderson University (#80 tie)
  • The Citadel (#120 tie)
  • Winthrop University (#147 tie)
  • University of South Carolina-Aiken (#226 tie)
  • Coker University (#237 tie)
  • Charleston Southern University (#242-321)
  • Coastal Carolina University (#242-321)
  • Columbia College (#242-321)

Select South Carolina Schools with Teacher Preparation Degrees

South Carolina State University

South Carolina State University (SCSU) is the state’s only public Historically Black university and offers a wide array of undergraduate programs dedicated to preparing students for initial certification. These programs include Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees in Elementary, English, Early Childhood (PK-3), Business, Mathematics, Middle Level, and Technology Education. There are also three Master of Education (M.Ed.) Special Education tracks for those seeking specialization in assisting students with Learning, Emotional, or Mental Disabilities. SCSU also offers a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program leading to certification in several subjects, including Early Childhood, Elementary, English, and Mathematics Education. In-service teachers may choose from M.Ed. programs in Counselor Education, Elementary Education, or Secondary Education. Finally, SCSU offers an Educational Specialist (EdS) degree and one doctoral program, a Doctor of Education (EdD) in Educational Administration.

University of South Carolina

The University of South Carolina’s (USC) College of Education offers programs to prepare students for teacher certification at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as several non-licensure-track graduate programs. Undergraduate students may choose from Bachelor of Arts (BA) programs in Early Childhood, Elementary (also offered online), and Foreign Language Education, or Bachelor of Science (BS) programs in Middle Level Education or Physical Education. USC also offers a five-year BA or BS program combined with a Master of Teaching (MT) in Secondary Education. Selected other graduate programs include a Master of Arts (MAT) with various possible emphases; an Education Specialist (Ed.S.) degree in School Counseling or Education Administration; a Master of Education (M.Ed.) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Special Education (M.Ed. offered online); an M.Ed. or PhD in Language and Literacy (M.Ed. also offered online); and an M.Ed. or PhD in Educational Research and Measurement.

Schools with Associate Degrees in Education

While a bachelor’s degree is the minimum educational level required to qualify for state certification, an associate’s degree can be the first step towards a career in education. It can qualify graduates for careers in non-licensed roles in early childhood education, after-school care, and related areas. The credits earned from an accredited associate degree program can also typically be transferred towards a bachelor’s degree. The following Alabama schools offer associate’s degrees in education.1 Schools with an asterisk (*) also offer four-year teaching programs and/or alternative route to certification programs.

Bob Jones University*
1700 Wade Hampton Blvd
Greenville, SC 29614
(864) 242-5100

Clinton College
1029 Crawford Rd
Rock Hill, SC 29730
(803) 327-7402

Greenville Technical College
506 S Pleasantburg Dr
Greenville, SC 29607-2416
(864) 250-8111

Horry-Georgetown Technical College
2050 US-501
Conway, SC 29526
(843) 347-3186

Midlands Technical College
1260 Lexington Dr
West Columbia, SC 29170
(803) 738-8324

Northeastern Technical College
1201 Chesterfield Hwy
Cheraw, SC 29520
(843) 921-6900

Southern Wesleyan University*
907 Wesleyan Dr
Central, SC 29630
(877) 644-5556

Spartanburg Community College
107 Community College Dr
Spartanburg, SC 29303
(864) 592-4600

Trident Technical College
7000 Rivers Ave
Charleston, SC 29423
(843) 574-6111

W.L. Bonner College
4430 Argent Ct
Columbia, SC 29203
(803) 726-3503

York Technical College
452 S Anderson Rd
Rock Hill, SC 29730
(803) 327-8000

Student Reviews

Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

Clemson University
105 Sikes Hall
Clemson, SC 29634
(864) 656-3311

Student Review: “I currently attend Clemson University in Clemson, SC. For me, I can’t think of any other place I’d rather be to earn my undergraduate degree. The campus is located on Lake Hartwell and near to the mountains. While there are many students in attendance at Clemson, it is still easy to make close friends and groups that can make the learning experience all the more enjoyable. Lots of new buildings and renovations to older buildings has been occurring, improving the classrooms and learning tools available to students. Downtown Clemson is only a short walk away, and having a bike on campus is a definite plus because it makes getting to class a breeze. The only real improvement that’s needed is to have better regulations concerning parking on campus for students, especially since there doesn’t seem to be enough spaces for everyone.” -Cynthia W., student at Clemson University
Student Review: “Clemson is the best place on earth! I spent four years there and wish I had many more to spend there! Clemson is a unique place in that it really values tradition, as well as growth (both academically and personally). The environment at Clemson is so different than any other place I’ve been. There is something “in those hills” that creates a community. There is a feeling of family and unity that you get the minute you step foot on campus whether it is solid orange Friday (where everyone wears Orange) or gathering for campus-wide organizations. Every day is a perfect day at Clemson!” -Jean L., student at Clemson University
Student Review: “I thought that the program did a decent job. Our partnerships with area schools in Pickens County were useful in getting us used to a classroom and seeing successful teachers operate in their environment. I do think that there was a little too much focus in our classes on ideal scenarios without a whole lot of practical application, which made things such as classroom management difficult to figure out until I was an actual teacher. I think something that probably plagues a lot of these programs, is they are generally being taught by educators who have either never been in a real classroom, or haven’t been in quite some time. I don’t really know how you bridge that issue, other than offering current teachers part time jobs or something to talk about what it’s really like out there in the field. I also think that throwing students in multiple scenarios could be helpful: i.e. an urban environment, a suburban environment, and a rural environment, but that may be somewhat difficult because of where the campus is located. Overall, I got some good things out of the experience, but I can’t say I didn’t have to learn a ton on the job once I got out.” -Student at Clemson University

College of Charleston
66 George St
Charleston, SC 29424
(843) 953-5500

Student Review: “I thoroughly enjoyed my teaching experience at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC. My professors, mentors, and overall academic coursework was rigorous and allowed for me to not only explore educational topics of my own interest, but also educational topics that were relevant to that particular time period. Continued professional development allows for me to continue to learn and grow in the field of education. Additionally, I have continued opportunities to grow and learn about being an educator in my workplace. I felt as though I was fully prepared for the workforce and that my professors and mentors prepped me for the realities of teaching.” -Student at College of Charleston
Student Review: “I had a great time during my teacher preparation program at the College of Charleston. The staff and faculty members were extremely knowledgeable. The classes were in depth and detailed and prepared you for the classroom. One particular area of note that the College of Charleston has is its Teacher Leader program. This is a program that allows for hand-selected teacher candidates to connect with educational leaders across the country. The program kicks off with an inaugural trip to Washington, DC and typically ends with a dinner detailing the accomplishments of each candidate. However, one aspect of the program that I disliked was the lack of classroom management preparation and the lack of preparation to teach students with disabilities in the general education classroom.” -Student at College of Charleston

Furman University
3300 Poinsett Hwy
Greenville, SC 29613
(864) 294-2000

Student Review: “I attended Furman University for both my B.A. in English and my M.A. in literacy. The B.A. really prepared me to be a teacher, especially with content. I felt ready to teach after taking such a variety of English classes with knowledgeable, kind professors. The education faculty are helpful and passionate; I learned a lot from them. I still keep up with several of the professors and have great conversations about teaching and best practices. My M.A. prepared me to be a teacher and a scholar. The professors asked me to question my own teaching and to ensure my lessons were rich with research-supported practices. I am a better professional because of this program which changed the way I viewed the profession of teaching.” -Student at Furman University

Lander University
320 Stanley Ave
Greenwood, SC 29649
(864) 388-8000

Student Review: “Lander University is a school that does a very good job of producing teachers. I feel like the faculty did a great job of preparing me as much I could be prepared for teaching in the South Carolina school system. I had a great set of lesson plans, lots of classroom time, and a good understanding of proper discipline. The only drawback of the program is that there was not great support when you were having trouble with credits or graduation approval. Also, as an alumnus, it is very difficult to get someone from the registrar’s office to reply to your questions. In general, I would recommend this program if you are great at getting information independently.” -Jennifer G., student at Lander University

University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208
(803) 777-0169

Student Review: “I loved my time at the University of South Carolina. The beautiful campus is located in the center of downtown Columbia. There is a large population of students so it can be easy to feel lost at times but the friendly atmosphere of fellow students and staff help make up for it. There is beautiful scenery in the area such as the Horseshoe or taking in a game at Williams Brice Stadium. There are a plethora of dorms to suit all students and living on campus is wonderful. There are plenty of places to eat, study, or have fun.” -Joseph T., student at University of South Carolina – Columbia

1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. The Princeton Review. The Best 385 Colleges, 2022 Edition. The Princeton Review, 2021.
3. US News & World Report Best Graduate Education Schools 2023: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-education-schools/edu-rankings
4. US News & World Report Best Online Graduate Education Schools 2022: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/education/rankings
5. Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP): http://caepnet.org/provider-search
6. US Department of Education 2021 Title II Report: https://title2.ed.gov/Public/Home.aspx