The position of a librarian is a very old one indeed. The oldest libraries in the world date back several centuries, and there are many more that existed in ancient times. Librarians have a huge responsibility on their shoulders – they must help patrons find the right books, documents, and information they’re looking for. They also need to be able to preserve and catalog information, handle archives, utilize modern technology and integrate it into their field, and much more. As a result, there are many different types of library careers out there today.
The number of library science careers continues to change, grow, and evolved thanks to the rise of modern technology. Computers, social media, and other tools have all made it much easier for librarians to perform their duties and it’s also opened up a wide range of new career paths that can be followed. Those thinking of earning a library science degree will want to consider just where they want their career to take them.
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With so many different possibilities, tracking down exactly the kind of position one wants begins by figuring out what overall goals there are and how to reach them.
To get started, think about the different opportunities out there. Here are some of the most exciting, super fresh library science careers one could choose to enter today.
- Library Services Consultant – These professionals focus on providing their deep pool of knowledge and their skills to libraries around the country. It’s much like a professional consultant for businesses, except that these professionals focus on helping libraries meet different issues and challenges ranging from integrating digital archiving tools into their efforts to the use of social media for promoting the library, and much more.
- Library Manager – Library managers oversee the entire operative side of the library. Job titles in this area can include department manager, branch manager, director or associate director. They can be responsible for work schedules, evaluations of employees, managing budgets and training.
- Web Archivist – Many major libraries have begun the process of building a solid website presence, and this process involves the archiving of all documents, records, microfilms, and more. Basically, the process involves transferring hard media into digital form and then uploading it onto the website for access by employees or possibly by the public.
- Integrated Library System Administrator – This position is a management style position that requires one to oversee the overall IT systems used in a library setting. It can be very challenging and responsibilities could include thing like managing interactive features, website issues, internal server problems, and more. It’s essentially the IT position of the library world, and highly important.
- Metadata Analyst – You will lead and assist strategic efforts that are related to projecting the growth of data and also your company’s metadata repository.
- Data Administrator – Someone who is skilled in the organization of information and has experience with databases can become a data administrator. You will ensure that company databases work efficiently.
- Business Researcher – People who want to start a company or small business will hire a well-organized data professional who is proficient in various types of research and data collection.
- School Librarian – This isn’t as new as some other positions out there in the librarianship field, but the fact is that school librarians today are more frequently tasked with being media managers and overseeing things like student’s access to computers, videos, and other information resources.
- Librarian of Special Collections – Many public and private libraries have special collections of historic documents that need the skills of a librarian with a great deal of expertise in archives and extensive historic materials.
- Technology Coordinator – This type of employee does a great deal of research in most cases and helps clients and suppliers work with new technology.
- Manager of Information Services – An information services manager is typically responsible for team management, training, research, data and resource management in either a government organization, nonprofit or private company.
- Document Control Specialist – Compile and assist in the internal publication of many types of records and files for private organizations. You might work with engineering drawings, white papers, reports, and generally support project managers in gather and documenting records for various products and departments in a company.
- Archival Consultant – Be in charge of managing special paper and digital libraries at both public and private libraries around the country.
- Web Services Librarian – Leads the vision, design and management of a library’s web presence to meet needs of students, faculty and staff of the school or university. Conduct analysis of the Website taxonomy and improve the user experience.
- Metadata Librarian – This positions may focus on one specific field or topic, but usually involves multiple subjects. Basically, it’s the overall management of metadata in a library setting and could involve a wide range of different responsibilities.
- Archives Technician – Many libraries utilize multiple methods of archiving their documents. This position allows one to assume the position of managing the technology and systems used for archival purposes. It is challenging and frequently involves interesting situations that need to be addressed fully.
- Digital Librarian – Manage the digital library of many libraries and also private companies by handling content import, metadata management, virtual reference services, publisher communication and work closely with technology and sales staff.
- Library Technician – This is basically the standard librarian position that most associate with the position. But it too is considered to be a ‘fresh’ position due to the large number of unique challenges and techniques applied to it today. Card cataloging is gone, and today digital technologies are used to help manage libraries. Additional responsibilities could include a wide range of things, and this position’s responsibilities are constantly shifting and evolving with the field itself.
- Law Librarian – This is a position that involves overseeing and managing libraries related to law. It may be a position that is offered by a specific legal firm, but could also be a government position.
- Director Of Content Acquisition – This role basically focuses on the purchasing and accumulation of resources and then the overall sharing of those resources. In short, those in this position are responsible for receiving, locating, and obtaining books, documents, and other pieces to add to a library and then overseeing the cataloging, archiving, and availability of those items.
- Researcher – A researcher with a library science degree can often work as a freelancer in a specialty field. For example, you can specialize as a researcher in Census records, Congressional records, court records, diplomatic records and more.
- Research Librarian – Working in a research library setting, these professionals oversee things like medical documents and books as well as scientific papers and books.
- Chief Information Officer – Companies that tend to traffic in large amounts of electronic data frequently have a chief information officer that can in some cases come from a liberal arts background, such as a library science specialty.
- Data Officer – A corporate officer that specializes in utilizing information as an asset through data processing, data mining and analysis.
- Medical Librarian – These professionals frequently work on the faculty of either biomedical degree or healthcare degree programs. They teach health care professionals how to evaluate and access information and to contribute their expertise on many medical topics.
- Clinical Informatics Librarian – You typically will evaluate, plan and develop many types of clinical support services in the special library in which you work. You also will provide specialized information services to many different project teams.
- Pages – Usually are responsible for returning books and other resources to the right spots on the shelves. They also keep books and other reference materials in the proper order. Some pages will do requests for getting materials that are in private areas of the library.
- Library Director – This is generally the top leadership position in a library. You will usually oversee and prepare the budget, develop policies for employment and service, make strategic plans and fund raise.
- Library Administrator – This type of library professional will typically administer the operation of a technical library for a school, department or facility. Usually is in charge of all administrative duties that are related to scheduling, planning, implementation of policy and needs assessment.
- Knowledge Specialist – You can work as a knowledge specialist for many different consulting firms where you will capture and process case summaries, case examples, proposals, tools and templates and also perform meta tagging of case information.
These are just some of the hottest jobs available today in the field of librarianship. Finding the right position for you to enter involves determining where specific interests lie and then deciding on how to go about reaching those goals. There are many library science programs that provide a good generalized education in the field, while many more may offer specialized areas of study for one to take advantage of. In either case, it’s good to know that there are many different job opportunities out there for one to choose from.