Library Assistant

To secure a position as a library assistant, individuals could benefit from the following:

  • Receiving hands-on experience at a library through a volunteer or internship program
  • Demonstrating solid interpersonal, computer and organization skills
  • Earning any required certificates or licenses, especially if seeking a position at a school library
  • Completing continuing education courses on developments in library sciences and information technology

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, some states require certification for library assistants or technicians working in public school libraries. In particular, employment in a school with Title 1 status may require assistants to have completed a minimum of two years of college.

Library Assistant Job Description

Library assistants are generally responsible for helping librarians with numerous activities associated with daily library operations, including: receiving and reviewing borrowed materials, organizing collections, updating online resources, and maintaining audiovisual equipment. They also frequently assist patrons with locating specific materials, completing library card applications and using facility computers.

More libraries are adopting advanced technologies for data storage and patron use, resulting in the need for library assistants to possess strong computer skills and working knowledge of the Internet.

Library assistants work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Local, state and federal government libraries
  • Public and private school libraries
  • Legal, medical and other industry-specific information centers

Many library assistants have standard 40-hour work weeks. However, a significant number of professionals work part-time. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 61 percent of library assistants work part time.

Library Assistant Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, around 51 percent of library assistants work for local governments. The average hourly wage for a library assistant is between $10.55 and $17.77. Demand is expected to be particularly strong for professionals with advanced educations and knowledge of information storage systems and related technology.

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