Becoming a librarian is a commitment to lifelong learning. Most professional librarian positions require applicant to have a masters degree in library science (MLS). Recent studies found that about 90% of librarian job openings list an MLS among their qualifications. The masters program typically takes 1 to 2 years to complete and will focus on the foundations of library and information science as well as the ethics and societal issues related to the access of information. There are no restrictions on the area of your undergraduate degree. People who go on to earn an MLS come from a wide variety of fields. If this sounds like too much of an education commitment for you, don't despair. There are a number of library jobs that do not require an advanced degree, such as library assistants and technicians.
Librarians need to have excellent people skills and a willingness to speak in public. Today's libraries are heavily integrated with advanced technology (no more card catalogues!), so you will need to be comfortable with technology and have strong computer skills. It doesn't hurt to have a familiarity with databases, computer networking, web design, and web programming.
Many aspiring librarians gain experience at their school's academic library or local public library. You may be able to find work as a graduate assistant, intern, part-time employee, or unpaid volunteer. Any practical experience will look good on your job application and help showcase your qualifications for potential employers.
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