Archivists essential career information:
- 2011 median pay: $46,750
- 2011, number of jobs: 5,460
- Employment growth forecast, 2010-2020: 12 percent
- Entry level education requirements: Bachelor’s degree
Archivists; what they do:
People interested in preserving historical documents such as the Declaration of Independence or entertainment history such as the original reel of “The Wizard of Oz”, should consider an archivist career. A passion for research, attention to detail and a love of historical documentation are just a few of the qualities needed to become an archivist.
Archivists research, protect and edit documents for historical value and/or significance. An archivist career also includes using electronic devices and computer programs to make accessing and protecting historical manuscripts and documents faster and easier.
Many archives technicians organize educational tours, conferences and classes for museums and historical sites.
Archivist careers include working with specific records such as digital records, manuscripts, photographs, movies, and sound recordings.
Working in these areas can result in a career as a:
- Film Archivist
- Museum Archivist
- Corporate Archivist
- Digital Archivist
- Photo Archivist
- National Archivist
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Archivists job titles:
- Records Manager
- Collections Director
- Archives Director
- Collections Manager
- University Archivist
- Manuscripts Curator
Archivists Education, Certification and License Requirements
People interested in an archivist career typically need a Bachelor in Library Science degree, a Bachelor of History degree or a Bachelor degree in a related field. However, some employers may desire a master’s degree, such as a Master of Archives and Records Administration (MARA), as well as volunteer and internship experience. Some archival collections require advanced degrees in specific areas such as computer science or medicine.
Archives technicians with a minimum of a master’s degree and work experience can obtain the Certified Archivist credential after passing a written exam offered through the Academy of Certified Archivists.
Archivists programs cover subjects such as:
- Records creation, appraisal and retention
- Research methods in library science
- Information retrieval
- References and information services
- Management of records and archival institutions
- Electronic recordkeeping systems and issues in electronic recordkeeping
- Archives and records
Career Advancement Opportunities
A doctorate in a specific program can help an archivist attain supervisory positions and further their archivist career. Workshops and additional continuing educational classes also help archivists advance in their careers.
Archivists Job Outlook
Forecast: 12 percent employment growth for archivists from 2010 to 2020 as the use of digital and electronic media and records produces a growing need for archivists who specialize in these areas. Retirement further helps create archivist job openings.
- 2011 median annual wage: $46,750
- 2011, workers at the 75th percentile annual wage: $60,580
- 2011, workers at the 25th percentile annual wage: $36,030
Archivists Major Employers
- Federal government
- State and local government
- Museums, historical sites, and similar institutions
- Colleges, universities, and professional schools
- Other information services