A position as a library assistant can include a multitude of differing duties and responsibilities, which are dictated by the employer. Basic duties can include staffing a circulation desk, shelving library materials, providing customer service and assisting librarians with projects and programs. Library assistants can frequently be responsible for technical systems. Library assistant positions are somewhat more common in public libraries, but they are also found in the academic, corporate, medical and law fields. These types of libraries may require additional education or experience; however, many of the basic duties are similar. Medical library assistants may need knowledge of medical coding. Library assistants in law libraries or at law firms may need training similar to that of a paralegal.
Library Assistant Job Education Requirements
Like most paraprofessional library jobs, assistant positions often require at least a high school diploma. Some college or a bachelor's degree is not an uncommon requirement. It is extremely rare for a position to require a graduate degree in library science. Nevertheless, some library assistants do possess an MLS/MLIS if they are recent graduates from a program. Academic, school and special libraries are more likely to require a degree or additional training related to their particular field.
Library Assistant Job Market
The job market for library assistants is expected to grow by 12 percent between 2012 and 2022. Many positions involve part-time employment. In recent years, hiring more library assistants than professional librarians has been used as a cost-saving method by libraries experiencing decreases in funding. This trend may continue. Similar jobs include library Technicians and general Library Workers.
Library Assistant Job Salary Information
The median hourly wage for library assistants is $12.89. Those employed in the academic setting earn a median wage of $15.47. Nationally, the salary of a full-time library assistant averages $30,000 per year although this varies considerably with the lower end of the range at $20,000 and the upper at $42,000. Education and experience are both key factors in determining salary.