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Summary Report for:
19-3093.00 - Historians

Research, analyze, record, and interpret the past as recorded in sources, such as government and institutional records, newspapers and other periodicals, photographs, interviews, films, electronic media, and unpublished manuscripts, such as personal diaries and letters.

Sample of reported job titles: Administrative Volunteer, County Historian, County Records Management Officer (County RMO), Historian, Historic Interpreter, Historic Sites Registrar, Historical Interpreter, Programs Director, Research Associate, Researcher

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Conserve and preserve manuscripts, records, and other artifacts. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Gather historical data from sources such as archives, court records, diaries, news files, and photographs, as well as collect data sources such as books, pamphlets, and periodicals. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Conduct historical research as a basis for the identification, conservation, and reconstruction of historic places and materials. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Research and prepare manuscripts in support of public programming and the development of exhibits at historic sites, museums, libraries, and archives. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Present historical accounts in terms of individuals or social, ethnic, political, economic, or geographic groupings. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Organize data, and analyze and interpret its authenticity and relative significance. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Research the history of a particular country or region, or of a specific time period. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Conduct historical research, and publish or present findings and theories. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Recommend actions related to historical art, such as which items to add to a collection or which items to display in an exhibit. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Determine which topics to research, or pursue research topics specified by clients or employers. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Speak to various groups, organizations, and clubs to promote the aims and activities of historical societies. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Advise or consult with individuals and institutions regarding issues such as the historical authenticity of materials or the customs of a specific historical period. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Prepare publications and exhibits, or review those prepared by others, to ensure their historical accuracy. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Trace historical development in a particular field, such as social, cultural, political, or diplomatic history. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Organize information for publication and for other means of dissemination, such as use in CD-ROMs or Internet sites. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Interview people to gather information about historical events and to record oral histories. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Collect detailed information on individuals for use in biographies. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Edit historical society publications. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Coordinate activities of workers engaged in cataloging and filing materials. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Translate or request translation of reference materials. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Teach and conduct research in colleges, universities, museums, and other research agencies and schools. See more occupations related to this task.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Assistive listening devices — Analog-to-digital converters See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Digital cameras — Digital still cameras See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Digital voice recorders — Digital audio recorders See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Inkjet printers — Computer inkjet printers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Laser printers — Computer laser printers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Microfiche or microfilm viewers — Microfiche readers; Microfilm readers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Microphones See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Notebook computers — Laptop computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Personal computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Photocopiers — Photocopying equipment See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Scanners — Data input scanners See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Analytical or scientific software — SPSS; Statistical analysis software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Data base management system software — Database management systems See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Data base user interface and query software — Gutenberg-e *; Reference management software; Structured query language SQL See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Data mining software — Text mining software; TokenX * See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Desktop publishing software — Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign; QuarkXPress See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Document management software — Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat; Web Scrapbook * See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Electronic mail software — Email software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Enterprise application integration software — Extensible markup language XML See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Graphics or photo imaging software — Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Information retrieval or search software — Archival databases; ArchiveGrid *; Searchable online catalogs; Smithsonian Institution digital archives * (see all 11 examples) See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Internet browser software — Page markers; Web browser software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Map creation software — Digital mapping software; Geographic information system (GIS) software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Music or sound editing software — Audio editing software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Office suite software — Microsoft Office software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Optical character reader OCR or scanning software — Scanning software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Web page creation and editing software — Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Word processing software — Corel WordPerfect; Microsoft Word See more occupations related to this technology.

* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.

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Knowledge

  • History and Archeology — Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Geography — Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Sociology and Anthropology — Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Communications and Media — Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Instructing — Teaching others how to do something. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Fluency of Ideas — The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Provide Consultation and Advice to Others — Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Coaching and Developing Others — Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Collect information from people through observation, interviews, or surveys. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare scientific or technical reports or presentations. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Instruct college students in social sciences or humanities disciplines. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Collect archival data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare materials for preservation, storage, or display. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Conduct historical research. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 56% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 56% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 63% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 73% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Telephone — 45% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Electronic Mail — 50% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 29% responded “Very important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 58% responded “Very important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 41% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 24% responded “Very important results.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Sitting — 47% responded “About half the time.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With External Customers — 39% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Coordinate or Lead Others — 35% responded “Important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 57% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Physical Proximity — 56% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 40% responded “Fairly important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 28% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).
Related Experience Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.
Job Training Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.
Job Zone Examples These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include librarians, lawyers, sports medicine physicians, wildlife biologists, school psychologists, surgeons, treasurers, and controllers.
SVP Range (8.0 and above)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
24   Master's degree
20   Bachelor's degree
18   Some college, no degree

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: I

  • Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations. See more occupations related to this work style.

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Work Values

  • Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $26.86 hourly, $55,870 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 4,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Slower than average (3% to 7%) Slower than average (3% to 7%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 800
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

  • Historians external site. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.

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