Libraries and information management

Includes different kinds of librarianship, working in archives and records management


There are undergraduate degrees in this field, but for people with a first degree in a different subject the main route into this popular sector is by taking a postgraduate degree.

The sector includes public and academic libraries, and information work within many different kinds of organisation including law firms, government libraries and healthcare settings. A related first degree may be an advantage in some of these. 

Records management focuses on ensuring that organisations observe information legislation such as data protection laws. The strengthening of this legislation in recent years has led to a growth in this area.  An archivist will focus on the heritage legacy of all kinds of documents, including business records. 

What’s it like 

Below, we list profiles of some roles specific to this sector. Each profile includes information about:

  • typical responsibilities in the role  
  • average starting salary range for new entrants  

  • entry requirements  

  • career progression  

  • professional bodies  

  • typical employers   

For more information on these and a wider range of specialisations, the website of CILIP, the professional body for people who work in the information, knowledge management and library profession, has a section on roles:

Job Roles (CILIP)  

Postgraduate study 

Many roles in librarianship and information management require a qualification which is accredited by CILIP. These courses are listed here: 

Accredited qualifications (CILIP)   

For roles in archives and record management, courses are accredited by the Archives and Records Association (ARA): 

Careers in archives (ARA)  

Relevant experience before starting your course may be required and, even if not specifically stated, will enhance your application. Check course details as these can indicate how much experience is expected. 

Work experience 

Use these suggestions as a starting point for finding work experience related to librarianship and information work. You will find other suggestions on the sites listed above, and by doing your own research. 

Information Services Group at the University employs students in a variety of roles including Resource List Assistant and Library Student Helper:

Student employment in the Information Services Group

Part-time work within local libraries: 

Public library jobs in Scotland

LG Jobs 

National Library of Scotland  

Volunteering – for example at the Scottish Poetry Library:

Scottish Poetry Library

Graduate traineeships – full-time paid jobs suitable for pre-qualification experience, advertised on the CILIP jobsite:

Graduate traineeships