Life Sciences Librarian, San Diego State University


Life Sciences Librarian

San Diego State University Library embraces innovation and collaboration, encourages diversity and deliberation, and looks for librarians who engage in a forward-looking perspective. SDSU Library seeks applications and nominations of a creative and dynamic individual for the position of Life Sciences Librarian and appointed at the Senior Assistant Librarian rank. The Life Sciences Librarian serves as a liaison to provide outreach, research support, collection development, and instruction for the departments of Biology, Chemistry & Biochemistry, and other research institutes associated with these areas. The incumbent will support the research data service needs across the natural and life sciences; in particular, the librarian will need to be familiar with reference sources for molecular and cellular biological research, popular analytical tools and strategies, and knowledge of research data management best practices. This position coordinates closely with other Sciences Librarians in the delivery of services across related disciplines. The position will also provide shared reference services (may include evening hours) and general information literacy instruction. This position may be eligible for hire under the SDSU Building on Inclusive Excellence (BIE) that creates additional library faculty lines for candidates who meet certain criteria. For more information, see BIE criteria. To be considered for one of these additional BIE hires, candidates should identify in their letter of application how they meet two or more of the criteria.

San Diego State University is a major public research institution offering bachelor’s degrees in 91 areas, master’s degrees in 78 areas, and doctorates in 22 areas. The university provides transformative experiences, both inside and outside of the classroom, for its 34,000 students. Students participate in research, international experiences, sustainability, and entrepreneurship initiatives, and a broad range of student life and leadership opportunities. The university’s rich campus life features opportunities for students to participate in, and engage with, the creative and performing arts, a Division I athletics program, and the vibrant cultural life of the San Diego region. For more information, visit

SDSU is a large, diverse, urban university and Hispanic-Serving Institution with a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence. Our campus community is diverse in many ways, including race, religion, color, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, pregnancy, medical condition, and covered veteran status. We strive to build and sustain a welcoming environment for all. SDSU is seeking applicants with demonstrated experience in and/or commitment to teaching and working effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds and members of underrepresented groups.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

The successful candidate will:

  • Serve as the liaison to departments of Biology, Chemistry & Biochemistry, other research institutes associated with these areas;
  • Provide outreach, and support to assigned academic departments to ensure collections and library services meet faculty and student needs;
  • Initiate and conduct course-related and general information literacy instruction and develop content, including course guides, subject guides, and other instructional and outreach materials in the assigned areas;
  • Provide instruction in the use of tools that aid in life sciences research, such as citation management software, electronic lab notebooks, and data repository options;
  • Build, assess, and promote life sciences collections that meet the research and curricular needs of undergraduate and graduate students, and faculty;
  • Provide in-person and online reference services including research consultations for assigned departments at the undergraduate and graduate level. Also, participates in the shared reference desk (may include evening hours);
  • Maintain current knowledge of emerging trends, best practices, resources, and pedagogical principles in scientific research and biological research data management;
  • Engage and participate in the ongoing assessment of student learning, library collections, and services;
  • Commit to fostering an equitable and inclusive workplace, and the ability to work effectively with a diverse faculty, staff, and student population is essential;
  • Participate in the shared governance of San Diego State University by serving on library, campus-wide, and California State University committees as needed;
  • Participate in professional development activities to demonstrate a continuous and meritorious record of scholarly contributions and achievements in the profession.
  • This is a full-time, twelve-month, tenure-track faculty position. Tenure is dependent upon continuing library service effectiveness, professional growth and development, and service to the University and community.

Rank of Senior Assistant Librarian with a yearly salary range of $71,000-$77,000, salary commensurate with experience and qualifications.

Excellent benefits, including medical, dental, and vision plans, as well as 24 vacation days per year.

Required Qualifications

  • ALA-accredited master’s degree or equivalent foreign degree;
  • Undergraduate or graduate degree in either the sciences or applied sciences, or experience as a life sciences subject librarian;
  • An understanding of the current research, information sources, and scholarly trends in the life sciences;
  • Commitment to excellent public services and improving the library user experience;
  • The initiative, flexibility, and ability to work creatively and effectively both independently and as a team member;
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal, and presentation skills, particularly the ability to explain complex concepts to a wide variety of users in individual and group settings;
  • Competence and sensitivity in working at a university in which students, faculty, and staff are broadly diverse with regard to many facets of identity, including but not limited to gender, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, and religion;
  • Ability to work as a team player in maintaining harmonious, cooperative working relationships with administrators, staff, and faculty;
  • Potential for meeting the requirements for tenure and promotion based on library service, professional growth, and service to the University and community.

Desired Qualifications

  • Experience as a library liaison to a science or applied science discipline, including engaging in research consultations, collection development, and subject instruction;
  • Experience with information literacy instruction;
  • Experience providing research assistance to a diverse population and users of all levels;
  • Active involvement in professional development activities with a record of scholarly contributions and achievements in the profession;
  • Willingness to teach outside of assigned subject areas and explore new disciplinary approaches;
  • Knowledge of life sciences data repositories, and/or OA in the life sciences.

Application Instructions
This position will remain open until filled. Review will begin immediately. Preference will be given to applications received by February 25, 2019. Applicants must apply via Interfolio at Anticipated start date is July 1, 2019.

The person holding this position is considered a “mandated reporter” under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and is required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment.

A background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed satisfactorily before any candidate can be offered a position with the CSU. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the application status of applicants or continued employment of current CSU employees who apply for the position.

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