Types of Libraries

Salt Lake City Public Library

Salt Lake City (UT) Public Library

Do you really enjoy law? Medicine? Music? Working with college students? Working with people of all ages? Working with children? Below are general descriptions of the major types of libraries as well as other opportunities to consider:

  • Academic libraries serve colleges and universities, their students, staff and faculty. Larger institutions may have several libraries on their campuses dedicated to serving particular schools such as law and science libraries. Many academic librarians become specialists in an area of knowledge and can have faculty status.

    For more information, visit the Association of College and Research Libraries' website.
  • Public libraries serve communities of all sizes and types. Wherever you live, there's bound to be a local public library nearby! As the name implies, public libraries serve the general public, "from cradle to grave" as more than one public librarian has been heard to say. Public libraries often have departments that focus on areas of service, such as youth, teens and adults.

    For more information, visit the Public Library Association's website.
  • There are also other options to consider in pursuing a library career. These include library and information science instruction and research; a huge range of vendors, publishers and consultants who provide goods and services to libraries; as well as international opportunities.

    Can't decide? No problem, skip to Types of library jobs >>

TIP: If you are especially interested in the preservation and conservation of information resources, you may consider a career as an archivist, or looking for a library job that has archival duties, such as a local history librarian.