Rare Books Cataloging and Metadata Librarian

Indiana, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Jul 15, 2021
Employment Level
Non-Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time

The Hesburgh Libraries at the University of Notre Dame seek an innovative, collaborative, and experienced individual for the position of Rare Books Cataloging and Metadata Librarian within the Libraries’ Metadata Services Program. Reporting to the Head of the Metadata Initiatives Unit, the successful candidate is responsible for the creation, maintenance, and organization of resource description for a wide range of materials held by the Hesburgh Libraries in various formats ranging from incunabula to twenty-first century imprints in English, Latin, and European languages.

The Rare Books Cataloging and Metadata Librarian establishes, evaluates, and updates best practices for cataloging rare and special materials in various formats with the goal of increased access and discoverability. This librarian works closely with Rare Books and Special Collections colleagues to prioritize within rare and special material cataloging, and collaborates regularly with the Libraries’ Metadata Community of Practice to ensure consistency with overall Libraries metadata.

Duties and Responsibilities
  • Performs original and complex copy cataloging for rare and special materials in a variety of formats (e.g. books, serials, broadsides, posters, prints, maps, single item manuscripts) and languages, adhering to the MARC21, RDA, and DCRM(B) standards as appropriate
  • Designs and creates non-MARC metadata for rare and special materials when appropriate, such as through Wikidata or local digital exhibits
  • Formulates subject headings and call numbers, applying Library of Congress Subject Headings and LC Classification, respectively
  • Coordinates and prioritizes resource description of rare and special materials among Metadata Services colleagues
  • Iteratively assesses, updates, and implements rare and special metadata policies and procedures, with the goal of moving toward programmatic work wherever feasible
  • Applies language expertise in Latin and preferably at least one modern European language and demonstrates a willingness to acquire a working knowledge of other languages when appropriate
  • Creates and updates authority records, contributing to NACO as appropriate
  • Contributes to the Hesburgh Libraries’ Metadata Community of Practice (MCoP) and provides expertise in rare and special material metadata
  • Participates in Library/Division/Program level projects and teams, sharing cataloging, subject, and language expertise as appropriate
  • Participates in national and international level cooperative cataloging and metadata initiatives and ensures local practices match up with changing national and international standards and best practices
  • Utilizes a reparative framework for rare and special materials cataloging and metadata by critically examining historical and current description practices and evaluating the need for remediation or recontextualization of harmful or offensive language in resource description
  • Contributes to the preservation of collection materials through the assessment of items to determine when conservation treatment or specialized housing is appropriate
  • Engages in research and learning opportunities to stay abreast of professional and industry trends, standards and practice in the field of rare and special material cataloging and metadata
  • Serves on University committees, task forces, and teams; contributes to community initiatives


Minimum Qualifications:
  • MLS degree from an ALA-accredited program or non-U.S. equivalent, or equivalent terminal degree required. Degree must be completed prior to the candidate's starting date of employment.
  • Demonstrated experience cataloging rare materials in an academic library setting
  • Knowledge of national and international cataloging standards and practices, including Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Books) (DCRM(B)), with an emphasis on rare and special materials
  • Ability to work in at least one metadata schema (MARC, Dublin Core, MODS, EAD, and/or VRA Core) used in our environment without assistance at the point of hire
  • Reading proficiency in Latin
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Experience working with metadata in a variety of encoding and exchange standards such as MARC, Dublin Core, MODS, EAD, VRA Core, etc.
  • Experience with juggling multiple stakeholders' expectations, organizing and recommending to the unit head a course of action for addressing these expectations, and designing and carrying out projects to meet them
  • Reading proficiency in at least one modern European language and demonstrated willingness to acquire a working knowledge of new languages when appropriate
  • Knowledge of other data content standards, including Resource Description and Access (RDA), Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Manuscripts) (DCRM(MSS)), and/or Descriptive Cataloging of Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Manuscripts (AMREMM)
  • Familiarity with reparative frameworks for rare and special materials cataloging designed to remediate or recontextualize harmful or offensive language in historical and ongoing resource description
  • Familiarity with the principles of identity management, authority control, and the application of controlled vocabularies
  • Experience using a variety of metadata creation, editing, analysis and transformation tools and systems such as MarcEdit, OpenRefine, OCLC Connexion, etc.
  • Ability to work independently as well as collaboratively and collegially across programs and with diverse populations within the Libraries and throughout the University
  • Commitment to professional growth though scholarship and service related to rare and special materials cataloging and metadata

Salary and Benefits:

Appointment salary and rank are competitive, commensurate with experience and qualifications.  The Rare Books Cataloging and Metadata Librarian is a non-tenure track member of the Library Faculty. The University offers an excellent benefits and annual vacation package.

Review of applications will begin immediately and the application deadline is August 23rd, 2021.


The University of Notre Dame is a highly selective national Catholic teaching and research university in northern Indiana about ninety miles from Chicago. Approximately 8,200 undergraduates and 3,100 graduate students pursue a broad range of studies. For more information about the University of Notre Dame, please visit the University of Notre Dame homepage at http://nd.edu/.  The Hesburgh Libraries (http://library.nd.edu) hold about 3.5 million volumes and provide access to more than 23,000 serials. The Libraries have 141 staff and 57 librarians. The Libraries are a member of the Academic Libraries of Indiana (ALI), ARL, NERL and other consortia. The University of Notre Dame is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer strongly committed to diversity. We value qualified candidates who can bring a variety of backgrounds to our community.

Further details & application instructions:  

This position posting and application instructions can be found on the Interfolio website: http://apply.interfolio.com/90285

Additional information about Hesburgh Libraries can be on the Libraries’ website: http://www.library.nd.edu

For additional information about working at the University of Notre Dame and various benefits available to employees, please visit http://hr.nd.edu/why-nd.  The University of Notre Dame supports the needs of dual career couples and has a Dual Career Assistance Program (http://hr.nd.edu/employment-opportunities/dualcareer/) in place to assist relocating spouses and .significant others with their job search.

Diversity and Inclusion:

The Hesburgh Library at the University of Notre Dame embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented identities to apply.

Hesburgh Library is a member of the ACRL Diversity Alliance, which unites academic libraries who are committed to increasing the hiring pipeline of qualified and talented individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups.

The University of Notre Dame seeks to attract, develop, and retain the highest quality faculty, staff and administration. The University is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and is committed to building a culturally diverse workplace. We strongly encourage applications from female and minority candidates and others that will enhance our community. Moreover, Notre Dame prohibits discrimination against veterans or disabled qualified individuals, and requires affirmative action by covered contractors to employ and advance veterans and qualified individuals with disabilities in compliance with 41 CFR 60-741.5(a) and 41 CFR 60-300.5(a).

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