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Librarians must earn a master's degree in library science in order to work at most public, school, and private libraries. Library science programs, which are offered at many colleges and universities throughout the United States, typically take one or two years to complete. Many of the schools that offer master's degrees in library science are also accredited by the American Library Association.
Librarians typically spend their days doing research at their desks or computer, as well as helping patrons find the books and resource materials they are looking for. Their environments are typically quiet, though social interaction with patrons is commonplace. Librarians usually work during the 40-hour workweek, and the work is ideal for those looking for part-time work situations.
In addition to having the proper education, librarians must enjoy research and be good at solving problems. They must like helping and interacting with people. Excellent listening and communication skills are important, as is the ability to keep up with the latest developments in technology, books, publishing, and media.
The job outlook of librarians is typically tied to the government budget. The increasing use of electronic resources, which will make it easier for students and other patrons to more easily access library resources, will decrease the amount of librarians needed.
For more information about library careers and library education programs, visit the ALA - Education and Careers web page. Information about librarian positions and other library jobs at the Library of Congress can be found on the LOC - Human Resources web page. For a comprehensive directory of libraries and library-related organizations in the USA and Canada, visit Information Today's American Library Directory website. For information about special-interest libraries, visit the Special Libraries, Law Libraries, and Medical Libraries websites.
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