Position Announcement: Early Materials Cataloger, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University

General Purpose:

Reporting to the Head of the Bibliographic Description Unit, the Early Materials Cataloger creates, enhances, and maintains original and complex bibliographic and authority records for manuscript items and printed works, chiefly from the medieval through the early modern periods, in the fields of British and European literature, history, and the humanities. Plans, directs, and reviews work of cataloging assistants and student assistants. Assists in the ongoing development of the unit’s cataloging procedures for related collections. Completes special projects as assigned. Contributes to Yale University Library and University-wide initiatives and is expected to be active professionally.

This position will be assigned a rank of Librarian 1 to Librarian 3. Librarian ranking information can be found at http://bit.ly/YULRanksPromotions. The minimum salary is $60,500.

This position represents an exciting opportunity for a scholar-librarian to work at the intersection of early materials cataloging and scholarship. We seek applicants interested in the politics of metadata, the materiality of the textual object, trends in forensic analysis, and the broader questions relating the creation, survival, transmission, ownership, description, and use of special collections to their understanding within scholarship, the classroom, and the public spheres of the humanities. Applicants that meet the minimum education/experience qualifications are encouraged to apply. The successful applicant will receive intensive on-the-job training in manuscript and print cataloging and paleography if needed, according to the protocols of the department and library. The Bibliographic Description Unit, part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library’s Technical Services Department, is responsible for cataloging material in all formats, ranging from medieval manuscripts to twenty-first century publications.

Over three centuries, the Yale Library has built special collections representing an extraordinary range of human experience and knowledge. The collections range from ancient papyri and medieval manuscripts to twenty-first century archives, from incunabula to websites. They are among the largest and most widely used special collections in the world: the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Lewis Walpole Library, Manuscripts and Archives in Sterling Memorial Library, Medical Historical Library, and special collections in the Divinity Library, Gilmore Music Library, and Haas Arts Library. In order to expand access to these extraordinary holdings and strengthen connections across all Yale Library special collections, the Yale Library is currently reorganizing special collections operations. The Beinecke Library and Manuscripts and Archives are integrating their staff and collections, and a new Special Collections Technical Services department has been formed to provide services for all special collections at Yale.

Required Education and Experience:

  1. Masters degree from an American Library Association accredited library school. In selective cases a graduate degree in a related subject field may be substituted. 2. Demonstrated knowledge of current national cataloging/metadata content and structural standards. Knowledge of subject analysis and classification systems. 3. If supervision of professional and/or support staff is a principal responsibility, supervisory experience is required. 4. Experience designing projects and bringing them to conclusion in a timely fashion. 5. Demonstrated excellent oral, written, and interpersonal communications; analytical ability; accuracy and attention to detail. 6. Ability to initiate and adapt to change. 7. Experience working collegially and cooperatively within and across organizations. 8. Experience working collaboratively and independently with varied groups within a complex organization and rapidly changing, team environment.


  • Strong knowledge of medieval and early modern European literature or history, and broad knowledge in the humanities, as demonstrated through academic degrees or an equivalent combination of training or experience.
  • Advanced reading knowledge of Latin, including neo-Latin and Latin abbreviations.
  • Good knowledge of Latin and English paleography, and broad knowledge of medieval European paleography 1100-1600, including both book and document scripts.
  • Good reading ability of Middle English and/or Middle French, in addition to Italian, French, German or another European vernacular.
  • Preferred Education and Experience: MA or PhD in European history or literature specializing in a field relating to the pre-1800 British and European collections. Demonstrated knowledge of the material culture of medieval and early modern books. Good reading knowledge of paleography for a European language beyond Latin and English. Experience creating MARC records. Cataloging experience using DCRM, AMREMM, DACS, AACR2, or RDA.

Application: For more information and immediate consideration, please apply online at https://bit.ly/YaleCareers-74161BR. Please be sure to reference this list when applying for this position.

Yale University considers applicants for employment without regard to, and does not discriminate on the basis of, an individual’s sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, disability, status as a special disabled veteran, veteran of the Vietnam era or other covered veteran.


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