This website was developed and is maintained by the North Central Wisconsin Area Health Education Center.

Health Science Librarian
A health science librarian provides access to medical information through books, pamphlets, journals, tapes, multimedia presentations, and the Internet. Health science librarians help health providers, patients, and students sort through the vast amount of information available.

Work Activities/Environment
Health science librarians work in a variety of places such as the library of a health organization, a pharmaceutical company, health information centers, and medical schools. Librarians are responsible for finding the most suitable resources, cataloging those materials so they can be found easily, and helping users find what they need. They are expert at searching specialized databases and the Internet. Many produce web pages and other guides to finding health-related information resources. The librarian's position can be full-time or part-time, the latter often true in small organizations. In larger libraries, librarians often supervise library assistants and other librarians.

Academic/Special Requirements
Students must graduate from high school, taking classes such as English, math, typing, and science. A four-year bachelor's degree is then required, including courses such as science and computer science. A master's degree in library science (MLS) is mandatory. Courses include scientific literature, biomedical communication, bibliographic resource use, library organization and management, and standard cataloging systems. While health science librarians are not required to be certified, the Medical Library Association does offer certification examinations which would help a librarian advance to a higher position.

For more information, see "Medical Librarianship: A Career Beyond the Cutting Edge" at

Educational Institutions
University of Wisconsin - Madison
University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

Average $58,000

Professional Organizations
American Library Association
50 East Huron Street
Chicago, IL, 60611-2795
202/628-8410 or 800/545-2433

American Medical Informatics Association
4720 Montgomery Lane, Suite 500
Bethesda , MD, 20814

Health and Science Communications Assoc.
PO Box 31323
Omaha, NE, 68132

Medical Library Association
65 E. Wacker Place, Suite 1900
Chicago, IL, 60601-7246

U.S. National Library of Medicine
8600 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, MD, 20894
888/346-3656 (FIND - NLM)

Home | Healthcare Occupations | WI Educational Institutions | Professional Organizations | Programs and Resources
Close Survey