Library assistants work in a variety of sectors including education, health, schools, law, public and commercial. The job title library assistant usually applies to people who work in school, college or public libraries. In other areas, such as industry or higher education they may be called information assistant or learning resources assistant instead.
- 5 GCSEs (A-C) including Maths and English are usually required
- A-levels or equivalent in some specialist libraries could be beneficial
- A relevant NVQ – either library and information or customer service could be beneficial
- A basic IT qualification such as ECDL is occasionally required
- CILIP Certification (ACLIP) could be advantageous in demonstrating an ongoing engagement with the profession.
- Occasionally you may be able to get into this role through an apprenticeship scheme
- Knowledge or experience of delivering excellent customer service
- Good computer skills including the ability to maintain databases and records
- Ability to assist library users in finding information
- Ability to work with a wide range of materials, including books, journals, newspapers, leaflets, pamphlets and maps, as well as video, film, DVDs, photographs, microfiche, CDs, and the Internet.
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Accuracy and good organisation skills
- Ability to prioritise tasks and solve routine problems
- Ability to be an active and effective team member
- Flexibility, enthusiasm and a willingness to undertake a complex variety of tasks.
Related books and publications from Facet Publishing
Facet publishing sell a range of titles for Library, Information and Knowledge professionals. These are all available at 20% discount to members.
- Cassell, Kay Ann and Hiremath, Uma Reference & information services: an introduction (2012)
- Court, Joy Read to succeed: strategies to engage children & young people in reading for pleasure (2011)
- Hernon, Peter and Matthews, Joseph R. Reflecting on the future of academic & public libraries (2013)
- Owen, Tim Buckley Successful enquiry answering every time (2012)
- Rankin, Carolynn Library services from birth to five: delivering the best start (2014)
- Rankin, Carolynn and Brock, Avril (eds) Library services for children & young people: challenges & opportunities in the digital age (2012)
- Stopforth, Nick Effective skills for the modern public library manager (2014)
Find out more
- Aslib: The association for information professionals
- Commercial Legal and Scientific Information group
- Society of Chief Librarians
- Scottish Library and Information Council
- Public and Mobile Libraries group
- Public Libraries News
- Academic and Research Libraries group
- Society of College, National and University Libraries
- Times Higher Education