Music Research and Instruction Librarian

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Job Description

Reports to: Curator of the Music Library

SUMMARY: The Music Research and Instruction Librarian actively engages students and faculty as partners in the integration of information literacy concepts into the teaching and learning mission of the university. He or she will provide leadership for reference, instruction, web presence, and other research and instructional service functions of the Music Library. This position supervises one full-time non-exempt staff member, and assists in the overall management of the Music Library. Additionally, the Music Research and Instruction Librarian will share collection development responsibilities under the direction of the Curator of the Music Library. As a member of the Distinctive Collections group, the Music Research and Instruction Librarian will work across all units of Distinctive Collections on collaborative workflows and projects that support the mission of the workgroup in particular, and of the Northwestern University Libraries in general.


  • Provides music-related reference and information services to students and faculty of the Bienen School of Music and broadly to all academic disciplines, including direct reference service, research consultations, and classroom instruction

  • Develops and maintains instructional guides for the Music Library website and manages Music Library’s web presence

  • Assigns and supervises the work of one full-time staff member with primary functions in public services

  • Assists the Curator in the promotion and use of rare and unique music materials

  • Participates in the collection management of music materials for assigned formats and subject areas

  • Assists the Curator of the Music Library in general management of the library

  • Serves as key contact and collaborator with other public-services units of the University Libraries and represents the Music Library and Distinctive Collections on relevant committees

  • Engages in appropriate professional development, continuing education, professional service, and research activities


  • Master’s degree from an ALA accredited program in library science

  • Bachelor’s degree in music

  • 3 to 5 years of relevant experience in an academic library supporting music

  • Extensive knowledge of music history and literature

  • Expertise with print and electronic information sources

  • Supervisory experience

  • Aptitude for teaching and training


  • Good Communicator – demonstrates excellent interpersonal communication skills

  • Customer focused – strives for high customer satisfaction with a proven record of successful faculty engagement

  • Collegial – desire to work in a collaborative team based environment

  • Adaptable – ability to work effectively in a changing environment

  • Takes the Initiative – takes ownership of work, completes what is needed without being asked, follows through

  • Efficient – plans ahead, manages time well, is resource conscious, finds better ways to achieve personal and departmental goals


  • Advanced degree in music

  • Record of professional service and research activity

  • Reading knowledge of Western European languages.


Among the largest music collections in the U.S., the Northwestern University Music Library has an unmatched strength in 20th century and contemporary classical music. Its more than 300,000 volumes of books, scores, sound recordings, and journals also include collections of original manuscripts, archives and other primary sources. The Music Library is an integral part of the Distinctive Collections workgroup, which also includes the Art Library, the Transportation Library, the Herskovits Library of African Studies, the University Archives, the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, and the Archival Processing team.

Northwestern University is a highly selective private university with campuses in Evanston and Chicago, Illinois and in Doha, Qatar. One of the leading private research libraries in the United States, Northwestern University Library serves the educational and information needs of the NU community as well as scholars around the world. Its collection contains more than 6 million volumes, a full array of digital resources, and collections of distinction in Africana, transportation, and 20th-century and contemporary music. Northwestern is a member of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA). See more information about University Libraries at:


Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.

How to Apply

Send PDF-formatted file containing letter of application, resume or vita, and names of three references to the attention of Jan Hayes, Director of Organizational Development, to Applications received by July 7, 2017 will receive first consideration.

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