Why This Matters


    When considering a bachelor’s degree program in South Carolina, you will find 39 institutions of higher learning. There are 14 public universities, 23 private non-profits, and two private for-profit organizations, according to College Navigator.


    South Carolina residents paid an average of $13,060 during the 2020-21 school year for in-state tuition.


    The average financial aid award for undergraduates from state and federal resources during the 2019-20 school year was $14,940.

Our Research

Whether you are searching for a small private liberal arts college, a medium-sized institution, or a large state university, our list of colleges in South Carolina provides a variety of options including online and in-person learning. We ranked these institutions based on multiple factors, including the number of credits needed to graduate and the cost of tuition.

Our list contains only accredited colleges. Most of these institutions received their accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), which ensures every degree program meets applicable academic standards and can participate in federal financial aid programs.

We evaluated each program on the basis of flexibility, faculty, course strength, cost, and reputation. Then we calculated the Intelligent Score for each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.

  • 78 hours to write this article
  • 186 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 381 education programs we compared

The Top 50 Colleges in South Carolina

Best Colleges In South Carolina
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What You Should Know About Graduating From College in South Carolina

If you plan to live in the same state where you obtained your degree, it’s important to consider your career potential. As of October 2020, the top industries with the most job opportunities and the largest career growth in South Carolina included trade, transportation, utilities; goods-producing services; government; professional and business services; and manufacturing.

When looking for a job in South Carolina, some of the largest employers for those with a bachelor’s degree are Children’s Hospital, Boeing Co., Sonoco Products Co., Pilgrim’s Pride Corp, and Continental Automotive.

If you’re still undecided on what path to take when choosing a degree program, take a look at the five fastest-growing careers for someone with a bachelor’s degree in South Carolina according to CareerOneStop. These jobs include operations research analysts, software developers and application developers, athletic trainers, medical and health services managers, and personal financial advisors.

What’s Next?

When applying for a degree program, it helps to know what forms of aid are available to you. The following is a list of state and federal resources containing scholarships, grants, and loans available to undergraduate students in South Carolina.

  • South Carolina Commission on Higher Education. The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education provides students with detailed information on how to apply for state loan programs and other aid.
  • Federal Financial Aid (FAFSA). Each year, students attending a college or university should fill out the online FAFSA form. This helps determine what type of federal aid you qualify for, including work-study, loans, grants, and scholarships. You can also predict if you are eligible for aid using the FAFSA4caster.
  • CareerOneStop. Sponsored by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this organization provides a detailed list of all the financial aid that’s available to you in each state. Each opportunity listed includes the amount of aid, how to apply, application deadlines, and contact information. You can filter your search by degree type and state.