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Library and Information Science

School Library Certification and Portfolio Guidelines

If you need program or certification information about the School Library Certification program, please visit the Study tab of our website

Here is additional information you will need after you are enrolled in the program.

Program Requirements

For Initial Certification:
Required courses for initial certification are:  SLIS 701, 702, 703, 705, 706, 707, 742, 761, 756, 757, 720, 794 (two internships), and four required education courses as outlined in the SLM Checklist for Certification.

For Advanced Certification:
For individuals who hold current classroom teaching certification, the required courses are:  SLIS 701, 702, 703, 705, 706, 707, 742, 761, 756, 757, 720, and 794 (one internship).

Capstone Courses
SLIS 720 and SLIS 794 are capstone or final courses. SLIS 720 is a pre-requisite or co-requisite for one 3-hour internship. Portfolios in progress are submitted once prior to enrollment in the capstone courses and during the final semester of the program.

Checklist For Certification

Download the Checklist for Certification (pdf) here. 

Application For A School Library Internship

Candidates who are currently certified as classroom teachers or who have successfully completed a semester of student teaching in a classroom setting prior to admission to the SLIS are required to complete one three-credit hour internship in a school library. Candidates seeking initial certification must complete two three-credit hour internships in two school libraries, elementary and secondary, planned over two separate fall and spring semesters. Candidates who have worked in libraries as paraprofessionals, aides, graduate assistants, or as school librarians without certification will not receive credit for an internship based on previous experience.  Candidates may not complete internships in schools where they are employed.

Internships are offered during fall and spring semesters. Students should notify Gerry Solomon, coordinator of school library field experiences, at least one year prior to applying for an internship. Each three-credit hour internship requires a minimum of 135 hours working in a school library during the USC fall or spring semester, planned as two full days a week over 10-12 weeks. Internship dates and times are scheduled prior to the internship semester in coordination with the candidate, the cooperating school librarian who supervises the internship, and the SLIS faculty internship supervisor. In addition, candidates must complete activities and hands-on experiences as outlined by the faculty internship supervisor, attend at least one national or state-level professional conference (e.g. SCASL), visit other school libraries, and participate at onsites scheduled for SLIS 794. Fall internships usually begin the end of August and end the first of November with end of program portfolios due November 15th. Spring internships usually begin the middle of January and end the first of April with end of program portfolios due April 15th.

In addition to the certification application sent to the USC-COE Office of Student Affairs, a separate application for internship placement must be submitted to the SLIS Student Services Office. Internship application packets are available online.

Deadlines for submitting internship applications to the SLIS Student Services Office are:

March 1 for Fall internships
October 1 for Spring internships

Candidates applying for internships (SLIS 794) will be contacted by the Coordinator of School Library Field Experiences before placements are made in K-12 school libraries. Placements for spring are made in November and December and placements for fall are made in April and May. Once placements are made, the SLIS Student Services Offices will register candidates for SLIS 794. Candidates should confirm their registration in SLIS 794 using VIP and pay fees before the deadline so that enrollment is not cancelled for non-payment.

Note - TB Test Requirement: Effective with the Fall 2014 semester all school library interns must provide documentation to Student Services of a negative TB test prior to the start of classes. If you have been exposed to TB in the past, you will need to contact your physician for appropriate documentation. If you live in the Columbia area, TB testing is available at the USC Student Health Center. You must make an appointment and it will take two days for results. 

You may download and print a copy of the School Library Internship Packet (pdf). 

Portfolio Requirements

Successful completion of the End-of-Program Portfolio is a requirement for the master’s degree and successful completion of the school library preparation program. Portfolios are submitted twice during the program of study. "Portfolios in Progress" are submitted prior to enrolling in the capstone courses (SLIS 720 and SLIS 794). Portfolios in Progress are due November 15th for enrollment in SLIS 720 in a spring semester and due July 15th for fall enrollment in SLIS 720.  End-of-Program Portfolios are submitted prior to graduation by April 15th for a May graduation and by November 15th for a December graduation. "Portfolios in Progress" contain five examples of competency – one for each of the program’s five areas (Learning Outcomes aligned with the South Carolina ADEPT standards for school librarians) with reflective writing. End-of-Program Portfolios build on the "Portfolios in Progress."

"Portfolios in Progress" are submitted in Blackboard and on CD to the SLIS Student Services Office. Contact the Coordinator of School Library Field Experiences to be enrolled in the correct "Portfolios in Progress" section of Blackboard.

PRAXIS

If you’re applying for certification in South Carolina, you’ll need to take the PRAXIS II specialty area test for Media Specialist/Library Science and score at least 151. If you’re applying for certification in another state, check the Licensure requirements on your state’s Department of Education website. For more information on the test, visit their website.

For more information about the certification process, contact:

Office of Student Affairs

Lauren Brown, Ed.S
Undergraduate Academic Advisor and Licensure Administrator
College of Education – Office of Student Services
University of South Carolina
http: www.ed.sc.edu/sa/advisement.asp
Email: brownlw@mailbox.sc.edu
Phone: (803) 777-3570
Fax: (803) 777-3068