Social Sciences Librarian

George Mason University
  • Location
    Fairfax, Virginia
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Nov 17

Position description

Social Sciences Librarian 

The George Mason University Libraries seek to fill the position of the Social Sciences Librarian. George Mason University has a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of excellence and diversity among its faculty and staff, and strongly encourages candidates to apply who will enrich Mason’s academic and culturally inclusive environment. 


This position is responsible for providing library services in the areas of reference, research, and instruction in support of faculty and students in the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution and to the Criminology department; and developing corresponding library collections and outreach initiatives. The position, part of the Social Sciences Team, reports to the Social Sciences Team Lead and works in an ever-changing public service environment. 


  • Provides liaison services to several programs, notably the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution and the department of Criminology;
  • Provides library instruction and support for face-to-face and online/distance education classes in assigned departments and programs;
  • Develops academic department-based relationships and serves on academic department task forces, committees, work groups, etc. as requested or assigned;
  • Provides general and specialized reference and research assistance, as well as email and virtual reference. Assists patrons in use of the research resources. Participates with service desk coordination, including: maintaining ready reference materials, coordinating the reference collection, providing reference training for classified staff, and providing input regarding workflow or projects;
  • Provides instructional services (including curriculum-based instruction, walk-in instructional sessions, web-based tutorials, library orientations, and individual student appointments). Prepares and maintains web-based instructional materials, online research guides, etc. as necessary;
  • Works closely with the faculty contacts from each assigned department in the identification, monitoring, and selection of research materials and purchases to develop collections in support of programs, and provides assistance in identifying resources for the members of these departments. Monitors, and is responsible for, the spending of fund lines of all assigned departments;
  • Works closely with the Digital Scholarship Center to support the data-related needs of designated departments: finding and using relevant datasets as well as instruction and assistance with relevant computational technologies;
  • Follows trends in scholarship in assigned departments and programs in order to respond to student and faculty needs;
  • Participates in the selection and training of Social Science Team GPAs. Participates in the training and supervision of GPAs, wage assistants, and ACL classified staff members for reference transactions and on assigned projects;
  • In the absence of the Team Lead for the Social Sciences, may be asked to fulfill senior librarian supervisor role and mediates and resolves issues as necessary;
  • Provides back up to other subject librarian positions as appropriate or as needed;
  • Participates on committees, task forces, projects, etc. within the Mason University Libraries, the Arlington Campus, the University, and, as appropriate, the community;
  • Participates in the work of the Social Sciences Team. Team responsibilities including attending group meetings, participating in team-based projects, and collaborating and communicating with other team members; and
  • Performs other duties as requested, which fall within the scope of a member of the University Libraries’ Professional faculty. 

Required Qualifications: 

  • ALA-accredited MLS or ALA-recognized foreign equivalent;
  • Graduate degree in a subject field relevant to the position, such as: Peace Studies, Conflict Studies, International Relations, Terrorism, and Human Rights;
  • Experience in providing responsive and quality reference, instruction, digital and collaborative library research services; as well as practical understanding of the changing research needs of students and faculty (at least two to three years of professional-level experience is preferred);
  • Experience in developing, building and sustaining working partnerships and relationships with teaching faculty, researchers and students;
  • Experience with social sciences data and understanding of social sciences research methodologies, including computational tools;
  • Ability to advocate and promote library resources and services to a variety of constituents;
  • Demonstrated ability to use current technologies for delivering and developing library services, including course management systems, online research guides, and digital learning objects;
  • Ability to build collaborative and mutually beneficial working relationships with people of varying backgrounds;
  • Ability to thrive in a team-based environment and work collaboratively;
  • Demonstrated commitment to professional development and growth; and
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written. 

Application instructions

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