What Are Specialized Academic Librarians?

Specialized academic librarians are the unsung heroes of higher education, providing invaluable support to students and faculty in navigating complex research needs.

Let's explore the unique roles of librarians in higher education.

If you’re a university student, there’s a fair chance you’ve been to the on-campus academic library a time or two, but you may not be using its resources to the fullest. After all, with such a massive collection of books, online databases, and other resources, finding the specific thing you need can be a bit overwhelming. That’s what librarians are there to help with, but most academic libraries are far more rigorous in ensuring the librarians can accommodate even the most specialized requests.

Rather than just a few general librarians, they hire academic librarians who are experts in a specific field and naturally of far more help to students majoring in their respective subject. We’ll cover a few types of specialized librarians, what they do, and how they can lend you a hand.


Take action today to support libraries!

Science Librarians

Libraries and librarians are usually associated with language and literature, but this isn’t always the case, especially in the context of an academic library. Academic libraries serve a wide variety of students in different majors. Hence, they need to provide a similarly diverse range of services, a philosophy that has resulted in the unique niche of science librarians.

Rather than receiving the arts degree most would expect from a librarian, science librarians often choose to specialize in one of many STEM fields. Well-versed in various scientific and mathematic concepts, they can assist your research or point you toward the information you need. 

Science librarians aren’t just workers who spend all day behind a desk, though. They’re scientists themselves, likely have a previous career in a scientific field, and share the same passion for experimentation, research, and discovery as the people they serve.

If you come up to the library desk with interesting questions, you’ll likely get interesting answers from someone excited to share their knowledge and experiences with you. That sort of passion is what keeps academia alive, and the work that these librarians do is proof that the sciences are thriving.


Send an email to your Representatives to show your support for libraries!

Art and Humanities Librarians

If you’re pursuing a degree in visual arts, language, literature, history, and the like, art and humanities librarians will be your best friends throughout your academic career. They’re generally required to have degrees specializing in one or more of these subjects and work alongside the other faculty members of those respective departments to ensure you find the information you need.

They work tirelessly to put together comprehensive collections of historical sources and accounts, guide students studying the arts, help them succeed in their academic endeavors, and, most importantly, inform them of the diverse cultures of our world.

Because of this, humanities librarians play a key role in promoting a global sense of tolerance and an understanding of the world around us, a sentiment that lies at the heart of your studies as an arts and humanities major.


Sign the pledge to vote for libraries!


Though not librarians in the truest sense of the word, archivists nevertheless play a critical role in the academic careers of countless students. Rather than cataloging your standard textbooks, archivists keep collections of artifacts, often including various firsthand accounts in the form of journals, newspapers, photographs, and the like. These are invaluable resources to those studying specific points in time and events that more conventional libraries may not have access to.

As the curators behind these detailed collections, archivists have a vast amount of knowledge regarding certain events and can help you find just about anything that pertains to their collection.

If you’d like to learn more about the many specialized librarians who can help you in your scholarly pursuits, feel free to visit our site at EveryLibrary today!



Visit www.everylibrary.org to learn more about our work on behalf of libraries. 

#librarymarketers: Enjoy this story? Want to use it for your library newsletter, blog, or social media? This article is published under Creative Commons License Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International and is free to edit and use with attribution. Please cite EveryLibrary on medium.com/everylibrary.

This work by EveryLibrary is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0