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How To Become a Library Technician in Canada

Updated on October 14, 2011

Have you considered becoming a Library Technician? In the current economic downturn with people being laid off or made redundant daily, it may be necessary for you to consider a second career. This will most likely involve some education.This is the first article in a series about jobs that might be suitable for those looking for a second career.

In Canada, a Library Technician is a para-professional who has usually received a diploma from a community college. They might also be known as library assistants. When I was at school our class was divided almost equally into new high school graduates and older people embarking on a new career. Most of the people who registered for the course mentioned that they liked books and people.

Seneca College in Ontario offers both a 2-year program and a 1-year accelerated program in Library Techniques. Subjects studied include book and non-book cataloging, the use of computers in libraries, library acquisitions and circulation. There are several other colleges in every province throughout Canada that teach Library Techniques. In addition, there are Library Techniques courses offered in many other countries, such as Australia and the United States.

Library Technicians Job Description

Library Technicians help to ensure that everything at the library runs smoothly. While librarians usually handle the administrative side of the library's operation, technicians handle the technical side. Duties for Library Technicians can include book cataloging, the upkeep of computers, the ordering and receiving books, and manning of the circulation desk. Library Technicians may also supervise other library staff such as shelvers and clerks. In many cases, Library Technicians are the only staff in the library, either in a small rural library, a business office or in a school.

The salary for Library Technicians can vary quite widely. They can earn as little as $20,000US a year or as much as $40,000US and up.

Being a Library Techinican can be a very rewarding career, especially if you like books and people.

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  • Uninvited Writer profile image
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    Susan Keeping 5 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

    Thanks for pointing that out. I'm embarrassed I made such a silly mistake. I do know how to use the possessive and have pointed out that mistake to others :)

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    Susan 5 years ago

    This article would be more impressive if you didn't keep spelling the plural of library technician as "library technician's".

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    Crazdwriter 7 years ago

    I thought about helping out in a library but not as a technician. I just want to put the books away and maybe read a few good books along the way. But I would get the job done I swear! I don't think the technician is up my alley though. But loved reading the hub. Great information, UW.

  • Constant Walker profile image

    Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

    Ha-ha. Yeah, that's true. Eugene built a brand new library a couple years ago right next door to the Tdowntown transit station, and it's more like a multi-leveled mall: Latte shop, food, cyber cafe, etc.

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    Susan Keeping 8 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

    Libraries are not as quiet these days as you think :)

  • Constant Walker profile image

    Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

    Short and sweet, and pretty useful, too. I've always thought working in a library would be an interesting job. And nice and quiet!

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