A degree in Library Science prepares individuals to work in the field of managing and preserving resources in the libraries. If you wish to work at a public or an academic library, then a Bachelor of Arts (B.A) in Library Science is recommended. This major will help you learn how to care for the electronic and physical resources that are found within a library. The Bachelor’s degree will train you to help patrons of private and public libraries find information within articles, books, and databases.
If you are interested in enrolling in a Bachelor of Library Science, then this guide would be of great use to you. Skim through it to learn about the program curriculum, career outlook and salary prospects of the professionals working in this field.
What Is Library Science?
The interdisciplinary field that applies the concepts and tools of information technology, education, and management to libraries is called Library Science. Libraries have existed since ancient times, however Library Science emerged as a separate area of study only in the latter half of the nineteenth century.
Individuals who want to make a career in this field should have interest in research and books, should have good organizational and communication skills, and should be tech-savvy. If you have all of these traits, and are also committed to academic and community development, then a career in Library Science would be ideal for you.
What Can You Do with a Bachelor’s in Library Science?
After earning a bachelor’s degree in Library Science, you can land entry level position in academic, special, and public libraries as Librarians and Library Assistants. After graduating, individuals can also work as Archivists. The job duties of these professionals are described below:
Librarians and Library Assistants: These professionals are responsible for shelving and sorting books according to their categories, cataloging new audio-visual and print material, creating reader’s advisory resources, and helping scholars and researchers locate relevant resources crucial to their work. Other job duties include managing payment of fines, assisting with reading sessions and library events, and settling disruptions and disturbances in the library.
Archivists: These professionals are responsible for evaluating, arranging, and preserving documents or records. They handle audio recordings, old photographs, letters, and books, and save them in depositories.
Now, let’s take a look at the salary estimates of professionals working in the field of Library Science.
These professionals work for elementary, secondary and postsecondary schools, companies, and local governments.
Annual Median Salary, 2018: $59,050
Annual Mean Salary, 2018: $61,530
Projected Growth Rate, 2018-28: 6%
State with the Highest Employment, 2018: New York - 12,690
State with the Highest Salary, 2018: District of Columbia - $85,330
Library Assistants and Technicians
These professionals assist librarians run a library. They work in university and school libraries, specialty and corporate libraries, and public libraries.
Annual Median Salary, 2018: $29,640
Projected Growth Rate, 2018-28: -3%
BLS has further divided this category into Library Technicians. These individuals help readers in the use of indexes, databases, and library catalogs to locate resources.
Annual Median Salary, 2019: $34,900
Annual Mean Salary, 2019: $36,950
State with the Highest Salary, 2019: District of Columbia - $52,310
State with the Highest Employment Level, 2019: California - 11,220
Archivists edit, appraise, and preserve historically valuable documents.
Annual Median Salary, 2019: $53,950
Annual Mean Salary, 2019: $57,500
Job Growth, 2018-2028: 9% (Archivists, Curators, and Museum Workers)
State with the Highest Salary, 2019: District of Columbia - $78,540
State with the Highest Employment Level, 2019: New York - 1,000
Note: These figures have been obtained from latest data available with the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
What to Expect in a Library Science Program?
The curriculum of the Bachelor of Library Science program covers a wide variety of modules, some of which include the following: Foundations of Library & Information Science, Library Materials for Mid-Grade & Young Adults, Library Programs & Services, Information Literacy, Issues in Education, Literature for Children, and Foundations of Educational Technology.
How to Choose a Library Science Program?
While choosing a Library Science program, you should consider a number of factors, which include specialization options, course content, distance learning options, cost of the program, and scholarships and internship opportunities.
Bachelor’s in Library Science Admission Requirements
Requirements for admission into a Bachelor in Library Science program varies from university to university. Therefore, it would be a good idea to research about the admission and program requirements before applying to the course. As part of the admission process, prospective students are required to send their application forms along with proof of graduation from high school, letters of recommendations, and personal statements to the school of their choice.