What is a Library Technician?

A Library Technician (LT) or Library & Information Technician (LIT) is a graduate of a two (2) year Library and Information Technician diploma program recognized by the Canadian Library Association. Library technicians support and assist librarians by performing technical tasks involved in library work such as collection management, cataloguing and document delivery. They also provide reference services and may manage small corporate, school or public libraries.

An LIT has acquired a specialized knowledge of library information systems and methods in developing, organizing, and maintaining a collection of material. Library and Information Technicians work in many different sizes and types of libraries including but not limited to: Public; Elementary, High School, and Post Secondary; Law; Medical / Health; Specialized; Corporate; and Government. Therefore, their duties and responsibilities may vary considerably from one position to another. However, in general, library technicians:

  • order and process materials (print, audiovisual and electronic) and classify, catalogue and maintain them
  • process interlibrary loans
  • help clients find and use library resources such as reference materials, audiovisual equipment or electronic resources
  • search on-line databases and other electronic information resources such as in-house databases or the Internet to find answers to reference questions
  • code and input bibliographic data
  • administer the circulation desk and related functions such as fines and the management of reserve collections
  • assist in the design and maintenance of in-house databases, web pages and local area networks
  • provide library orientation and instruction for library users
  • help clients develop computer and digital literacy skills
  • deliver programs designed for children, young adults or other groups
  • help organize promotional events
  • compile and consult print and electronic indexes
  • select news clippings and prepare competitive intelligence information for library users
  • supervise library clerks, volunteers or student assistants.

(Alberta Occupational Profiles, 2013)