Summary Report for:
25-4021.00 - Librarians
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.
Sample of reported job titles: Catalog Librarian, Children's Librarian, Librarian, Library Director, Library Media Specialist, Medical Librarian, Public Services Librarian, Reference Librarian, Serials Librarian, Technical Services Librarian
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
- Analyze patrons' requests to determine needed information and assist in furnishing or locating that information.
- Search standard reference materials, including online sources and the Internet, to answer patrons' reference questions.
- Teach library patrons basic computer skills, such as searching computerized databases.
- Plan and teach classes on topics such as information literacy, library instruction, and technology use.
- Review and evaluate materials, using book reviews, catalogs, faculty recommendations, and current holdings to select and order print, audio-visual, and electronic resources.
- Locate unusual or unique information in response to specific requests.
- Explain use of library facilities, resources, equipment, and services and provide information about library policies.
- Plan and deliver client-centered programs and services, such as special services for corporate clients, storytelling for children, newsletters, or programs for special groups.
- Respond to customer complaints, taking action as necessary.
- Develop library policies and procedures.
- Organize collections of books, publications, documents, audio-visual aids, and other reference materials for convenient access.
- Confer with colleagues, faculty, and community members and organizations to conduct informational programs, make collection decisions, and determine library services to offer.
- Develop, maintain, and troubleshoot information access aids, such as databases, annotated bibliographies, web pages, electronic pathfinders, software programs, and online tutorials.
- Evaluate vendor products and performance, negotiate contracts, and place orders.
- Direct and train library staff in duties, such as receiving, shelving, researching, cataloging, and equipment use.
- Evaluate materials to determine outdated or unused items to be discarded.
- Engage in professional development activities, such as taking continuing education classes and attending or participating in conferences, workshops, professional meetings, and associations.
- Compile lists of books, periodicals, articles, and audio-visual materials on particular subjects.
- Represent library or institution on internal and external committees.
- Code, classify, and catalog books, publications, films, audio-visual aids, and other library materials based on subject matter or standard library classification systems.
- Develop and maintain databases that provide information for library users.
- Design information storage and retrieval systems and develop procedures for collecting, organizing, interpreting, and classifying information.
- Keep up-to-date records of circulation and materials, maintain inventory, and correct cataloging errors.
- Supervise daily library operations, budgeting, planning, and personnel activities, such as hiring, training, scheduling, and performance evaluations.
- Negotiate contracts for library services, materials, and equipment.
- Arrange for interlibrary loans of materials not available in a particular library.
- Check books in and out of the library.
- Collect and organize books, pamphlets, manuscripts, and other materials in specific fields, such as rare books, genealogy, or music.
- Author or publish professional articles, internal documents, and instructional materials.
- Write proposals for research or project grants.
- Compile lists of overdue materials and notify borrowers that their materials are overdue.
- Plan and participate in fundraising drives.
- Assemble and arrange display materials.
- Perform public relations work for the library, such as giving televised book reviews and community talks.
- Provide input into the architectural planning of library facilities.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Bar code reader equipment — Barcode scanners
- Cargo trucks — Bookmobiles
- Cash registers
- Desktop computers
- Digital video disk players or recorders — Digital video disk DVD players
- Film projectors
- Microfiche or microfilm viewers — Microfiche readers; Microfilm readers
- Microfiche reader printers — Microfilm printers
- Notebook computers — Laptop computers
- Personal computers
- Photocopiers — Photocopying equipment
- Public address systems — Public address PA systems
- Special purpose telephones — Multi-line telephone systems
- Video cassette players or recorders — Video cassette recorders VCR
Technology used in this occupation:
- Data base user interface and query software — Ex Libris Group Aleph; Microsoft Access; Saora Keepoint; Thomson Scientific Dialog (see all 14 examples)
- Desktop publishing software
- Document management software — Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat software
- Electronic mail software — Email software
- Enterprise application integration software — Extensible markup language XML
- Graphics or photo imaging software — Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software
- Information retrieval or search software — Classification Web; LexisNexis software; Westlaw
- Internet browser software — Web browser software
- Library software — Online Computer Library Center OCLC; RCL Software Media Library Manager; Surpass software; WorldCat (see all 17 examples)
- Object or component oriented development software — Sun Microsystems Java
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office software
- Presentation software — Microsoft PowerPoint
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Video creation and editing software — Apple iMovie
- Web page creation and editing software — Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver; Adobe Systems Adobe Flash Player; Really Simple Syndication RSS; Wiki software (see all 7 examples)
- Web platform development software — Cascading Style Sheets CSS; Extensible HyperText Markup Language XHTML; Hypertext markup language HTML; PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- 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.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- 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.
- 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.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- 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.
- 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.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Instructing — Teaching others how to do something.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
- Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- 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).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- 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.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- 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).
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- 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.
- Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
- 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.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- 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.
- Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Provide Consultation and Advice to Others — Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
Detailed Work Activities
- Develop instructional materials.
- Advise educators on curricula, instructional methods, or policies.
- Order instructional or library materials or equipment.
- Write articles, books or other original materials in area of expertise.
- Attend training sessions or professional meetings to develop or maintain professional knowledge.
- Develop policies or procedures for archives, museums or libraries.
- Organize informational materials.
- Teach others to use technology or equipment.
- Help patrons use library or archival resources.
- Maintain operational records.
- Write grant proposals.
- Serve on institutional or departmental committees.
- Maintain inventories of materials, equipment, or products.
- Process library materials.
- Direct department activities.
- Develop library or archival databases.
- Construct exhibits or parts of exhibits.
- Search information sources to find specific data.
- Confer with others to conduct or arrange operational activities.
- Direct activities of subordinates.
- Train staff members.
- Classify materials according to standard systems.
- Select educational materials or equipment.
- Inspect materials or equipment to determine need for repair or replacement.
- Promote educational institutions or programs.
- Plan community programs or activities for the general public.
- Negotiate purchases or contracts.
- Compile specialized bibliographies or lists of materials.
- Electronic Mail — 95% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 94% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 84% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 90% responded “Every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 71% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Contact With Others — 72% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 64% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 56% responded “Extremely important.”
- Deal With External Customers — 57% responded “Extremely important.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 38% responded “Extremely important.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 43% responded “More than half the time.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 44% responded “Important.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 36% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 38% responded “Important results.”
- Physical Proximity — 27% responded “I work with others but not closely (e.g., private office).”
- Letters and Memos — 49% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Degree of Automation — 51% responded “Highly automated.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 24% responded “Very important.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 27% responded “Less than half the time.”
- Time Pressure — 35% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 37% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
|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)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
Interest code: CSE
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
- Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- 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.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
- Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2014)||$27.01 hourly, $56,170 annual|
|Employment (2014)||143,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2014-2024)||Slower than average (2% to 4%)|
|Projected job openings (2014-2024)||29,500|
|Top industries (2014)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2014-2024 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
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.
- Librarians . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition.