What Library Assistants and Technicians Need to Know

Below is a sample of what is often required for library assistant and technician job positions. More discussion about degree requirements is available in the next section.

Education

Requirements vary greatly and may include:

  • High school degree
  • Library technician certificate or associate's degree

Skills

  • Ability to communicate clearly with patrons, co-workers and supervisors
  • Ability to follow library policies and procedures, especially as relate to issuing library cards, checking out items, collecting fines and fees, and processing new materials
  • Ability to count change and handle money
  • Ability to work with computer applications; most library assistants will use the library's computer system to manage library card holder records, or add new items to the online catalog
  • Ability to work with and troubleshoot office machines, such as copiers

Experience

  • Generally previous experience is not required, although preference may be given to people who are already somewhat familiar with a library environment, such as a page

Career path

  • Library assistants who excel in their area of work may make excellent candidates for a managerial position, such as a circulation manager or head of circulation. In public libraries, it is not unusual for a similar career path in the cataloging or "technical services" area.
  • Library assistants who complete a four-year undergraduate degree in any field are excellent candidates to consider becoming a librarian.

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  read more about it:

U.S. Department of Labor—Library Assistants
What a library assistant does.

U.S. Department of Labor—Library Technicians
The job description of a library technician.

Support Staff Positions in Libraries
The ALA listing of the myriad support staff opportunities in libraries.

Council on Library/Media Technicians

Library Support Staff Interests Round Table