Why This Matters

  • 40 COLLEGES IN SOUTH CAROLINA

    When considering a bachelor’s degree program in South Carolina, you will find 40 institutions of higher learning. There are 14 public universities, 24 private non-profits, and two private for-profit organizations, according to College Navigator.

  • $13,120 AVERAGE IN-STATE TUITION & FEES

    South Carolina residents paid an average of $13,120 during the 2021-22 school year for in-state tuition.

  • $14,800 AVERAGE FINANCIAL AID PER U.S. STUDENT

    The average financial aid award for undergraduates from state and federal resources during the 2020-21 school year was $14,800.

Our Research

This list features some of the best brick-and-mortar schools in South Carolina. Each school featured is a nonprofit, accredited institution — either public or private — with a high standard of academic quality for post-secondary institutions. We included liberal arts colleges and research universities as well as small, midsize, and large institutions. Next, we compared this comprehensive list to a list of aggregated college rankings from reputable publications like the U.S. News & World Report among others to simplify a student’s college search. We pored through these rankings so students don’t have to.

The colleges on our list are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), a reputable organization that examines the objectives, quality, and overall effectiveness of education programs in the southern United States.

We evaluated each school on tuition costs, admission, retention and graduation rates, faculty, and reputation as well as the student resources provided for on-campus students. Then we calculated the Intelligent Score on a scale of 0 to 100. Read more about our ranking methodology.

The Top 26 Colleges in South Carolina

Best Colleges In South Carolina
01
Intelligent Pick
Clemson University
01
Best Freshman Experience
University of South Carolina
01
Most Customizable
Furman University
01
Best Military College
The Military College of South Carolina
01
Best Liberal Arts College
Wofford College
01
Best Student Support Services
Presbyterian College
01
Best HBCU
Claflin University
01
Best Urban Campus
College of Charleston
01
Best Christian College
Erskine College
01
Best Lutheran College
Newberry College
01

USC Upstate
01

USC Aiken
01

Winthrop University
01

Bob Jones University
01

Lander University
01

Columbia College at South Carolina
01

Converse University
01

Anderson University
01

Coastal Carolina University
01

North Greenville University
01

Columbia International University
01

Voorhees College
01

Charleston Southern University
01

Francis Marion University
01

Southern Wesleyan University
01

South Carolina State University

 

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 2021, the top industries with the most job opportunities and the largest career growth in South Carolina included trade, transportation, and utilities; government; goods-producing; professional and business services; and retail trade.

When looking for a job in South Carolina, you should keep in mind that some of the largest employers in the state 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 agents and talent managers, information security analysts, logisticians, financial examiners, and medical and health services managers.

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.