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Smathers Libraries Career Development Handbook

I. A. 1. Library Faculty Ranks

Assistant University Librarian
Assistant University Librarian is the beginning tenure track rank. Librarians assigned to this rank are responsible for technical, bibliographic, public service or other functions relating to library operations. Librarians at this level have demonstrated their ability to perform professional work effectively with only general direction. Incumbents contribute to the development of new policies and procedures when needed and actively participate in formulating and implementing programs for the delivery of library services.

  • Assignments:
    Assignments may involve complex problem solving skills requiring extensive consultation and interdepartmental communication, analytical ability, and organizational and technological creativity. Tasks may require some specialized subject or bibliographic competence or experience beyond that gained by achievement of the MLS. Participation in planning, development, and implementation of policies, programs, and services is expected. There should be evidence of active participation in relevant local, state, regional, or national organizations and the potential for making scholarly contributions to the field of librarianship.

  • Minimum Qualifications:
    A master’s degree in Library Science from an American Library Association accredited institution. Positions sometime require linguistic skills and subject and technical competencies. Demonstrated equivalent training and experience in the area of bibliographic theory and practice as applied to highly specialized areas, e.g. archives, rare and special collections, etc. may be acceptable in some cases.

Associate University Librarian
Associate University Librarian is the second highest rank for library faculty. Individuals assigned to this rank demonstrate the ability to perform complex bibliographic, public service and instructional, subject/collection oriented, or managerial responsibilities. This is the rank most frequently awarded when tenure is granted. Individuals within this rank often have assignments that have substantial implications for library-wide operations, programs, and services. Independent judgment as well as a knowledge and understanding of library policies are required. Decisions made by the incumbent should reflect significant professional experience and an understanding of the interactions of the research library organization.

  • Assignments:
    The scope of assignments regularly encompasses work of above average difficulty. Work at this level requires specialized subject, bibliographic, technical or administrative experience and considerable resourcefulness in applying bibliographic theory or analytic skills and experience in the solution of technical or operational problems. Effective contributions to planning, developing and implementing policies, programs and services are expected. Associate University Librarians perform technical, bibliographic, public service or administrative tasks requiring significant education and experience for their satisfactory completion.

  • Minimum Qualifications:
    A master’s degree in Library Science from an American Library Association accredited institution is required. Demonstrated equivalent training and experience in the area of bibliographic theory and practice as applied to highly specialized areas, e.g. archives, rare and special collections, etc. may be acceptable in some cases. Positions sometimes require linguistic skills and subject competence. Appointment to this rank is based on demonstrated commitment to the support of scholarship and research, demonstrated interest in broad professional issues as shown by scholarly or professional activities outside the scope of previous jobs, and a high commitment to the university.

    A minimum of five years as a librarian after receiving the master’s degree in Library Science or equivalent preparation in some combination of advanced subject degrees, scholarly work, and library experience are required.

University Librarian
University Librarian is the highest tenured rank. University Librarians are responsible for highly complex technical, bibliographical, and public service or other functions having a significant impact on successful library operations. Mature professional judgment, a broad perspective of the library and the university, and excellent analytic skills are required to work at this level. Decisions made frequently have wide ranging implications and generally require skill in planning and organizing, imagination and resourcefulness in problem solving, and initiative in dealing with complex managerial and service issues. Work is performed with great independence for the incumbent to set goals, identify the needed resources, and choose and evaluate methods of implementation.

  • Assignments:
    The scope of assignment at this level is broad; the incumbent often serves as the final authority for the technical or bibliographical responsibility assigned. Incumbents must demonstrate recognized mastery of a complex technical or bibliographic field or a major area of scholarship. Responsibility for planning, developing and implementing policies, programs and services of major library units is frequently assigned at this level; outstanding contributions to planning and development are expected. With excellence, they perform technical, bibliographical, public service or administrative tasks requiring maturity in terms of both knowledge and experience.

  • Minimum Qualifications:
    A master’s degree in Library Science from an American Library Association accredited institution. Graduate or professional degrees may be required in an area of librarianship such as law, classics, etc. Positions sometime require superior linguistic skills and subject competencies or technical expertise. Demonstrated equivalent training and experience in the area on librarianship may be substituted in some cases. High professional achievement and distinguished service are expected at this level.

    A minimum of eight years experience as a librarian after receiving the master’s degree in Library Science or equivalent preparation in some combination of advanced subject degrees, scholarly work and library experience is required.

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