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What You Need to Know About Librarians

Position Description Administer libraries and perform related library services. Work in a variety of settings, including public libraries, educational institutions, museums, corporations, government agencies, law firms, non-profit organizations, and healthcare providers. Tasks may include selecting, acquiring, cataloguing, classifying, circulating, and maintaining library materials; and furnishing reference, bibliographical, and readers’ advisory services. May perform in-depth, strategic research, and synthesize, analyze, edit, and filter information. May set up or work with databases and information systems to catalogue and access information.

Life As a Librarian

  • Negotiate contracts for library services, materials, and equipment.
  • Develop, maintain, and troubleshoot information access aids, such as databases, annotated bibliographies, web pages, electronic pathfinders, software programs, and online tutorials.
  • Represent library or institution on internal and external committees.
  • Confer with colleagues, faculty, and community members and organizations to conduct informational programs, make collection decisions, and determine library services to offer.
  • Analyze patrons’ requests to determine needed information and assist in furnishing or locating that information.
  • Compile lists of books, periodicals, articles, and audio-visual materials on particular subjects.

Librarian Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Librarians say are important on the job.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

  • Record Librarian
  • Reference Services Head
  • Catalog Librarian
  • Library Circulation Department Chief
  • Collection Development Librarian

Job Opportunities for Librarians

There were about 138,200 jobs for Librarians in 2016 (in the United States).

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.9% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 12,400 new jobs for Librarians by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 14,500 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Librarians in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Librarians are Texas, New York, and California.

Watch out if you plan on working in Vermont, Maine, or Alaska. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Librarian

The typical yearly salary for Librarians is somewhere between $34,630 and $93,050. The median salary is $59,050.

Salary Ranges for Librarians

How much do Librarians make in different U.S. states?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

District of Columbia

$85,330

California

$81,580

Maryland

$72,470

Washington

$71,780

Alaska

$71,180

Massachusetts

$70,860

Delaware

$70,820

Connecticut

$70,710

Virginia

$69,480

Nevada

$69,390

Rhode Island

$69,010

New York

$68,520

Hawaii

$67,800

New Jersey

$67,700

Minnesota

$64,550

Colorado

$63,960

Oregon

$63,450

Texas

$60,810

Georgia

$60,650

Kentucky

$58,440

Illinois

$57,680

South Carolina

$57,650

Pennsylvania

$57,530

Florida

$57,340

Wisconsin

$57,330

New Hampshire

$56,360

North Dakota

$55,250

Wyoming

$55,100

Ohio

$55,090

North Carolina

$55,020

Tennessee

$55,010

Alabama

$54,470

Missouri

$53,450

Arkansas

$53,310

Louisiana

$52,540

Michigan

$51,780

New Mexico

$51,650

Nebraska

$51,070

Maine

$51,010

Montana

$50,870

Utah

$50,790

Arizona

$49,240

Vermont

$48,370

Indiana

$47,870

Iowa

$47,690

Mississippi

$46,400

Kansas

$45,580

Idaho

$44,630

Oklahoma

$44,270

West Virginia

$41,560

South Dakota

$41,480

What Tools do Librarians Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Librarians:

  • Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver
  • Microsoft Word
  • JavaScript
  • Microsoft Access
  • PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor
  • Oracle Java
  • Drupal
  • Microsoft SharePoint
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office

How do I Become a Librarian?

Are there Librarian education requirements?

Librarian Degree Level

What work experience do I need to become a Librarian?

Librarian Work Experience

Where do Librarians Work?

Librarian Sectors

Are you already one of the many Librarians in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

  • Archeologists
  • Poets, Lyricists and Creative Writers
  • English Language and Literature Professors

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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