Archivists appraise, process, catalog, and preserve permanent records and historically valuable documents. Curators oversee collections of artwork and historic items, and may conduct public service activities for an institution. Museum technicians and conservators prepare and restore objects and documents in museum collections and exhibits.
Archivists, curators, museum technicians, and conservators typically work in museums, historical sites, governments, colleges and universities, corporations, and other institutions that require their skills. Most work full time.
How to Become an Archivist, Curator, or Museum Worker
Most archivist, curator, and conservator positions require a master’s degree related to the position’s field. Museum technicians must have a bachelor’s degree. People often gain experience through an internship or by volunteering in archives and museums.
Employment of archivists, curators, museum technicians, and conservators is projected to grow 7 percent from 2014 to 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. The need to store information in archives and public interest in science, art, and history, will continue to spur demand for archivists, curators, museum technicians, and conservators. Applicants should expect very strong competition for jobs.
Job Trends for Archivists, Curators, and Museum Workers
This occupation supported 29,200 jobs in 2012 and 31,300 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 7.2%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 11.6% in 2022 to 32,600 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 29,800, compared with an observed value of 31,300, 5.0% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 7.2% in 2024 to 33,400 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 33,200 jobs for 2024, 0.6% lower than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are about on track with the 2012 trend within this occupation.