Academic Employment Opportunities

Position Information
Position Rank: Full Time Professorial Stream - Assistant Librarian
Discipline/Field: Media Collections Librarian
Home Faculty: Libraries
Home Department/Area/Division: Content Development and Analysis
Affiliation/Union: YUFA
Position Start Date: January 1, 2022

Assistant Librarian, Media Collections, York University Libraries

York University Libraries seeks a dynamic and innovative individual with strong leadership potential to advance its portfolio in media collections: film, sound recordings, audiovisual recordings and photography, both digital and analogue. This person will support the teaching, learning and research needs of all our users. This continuing appointment position is open to those with any mix of direct experience or expertise with media content and its development, preservation, licensing and analysis.

York University champions new ways of thinking that drive teaching and research excellence. Through cross-disciplinary programming, innovative course design, diverse experiential learning and a supportive community environment, our students receive the education they need to create big ideas that make an impact on the world. Located in Toronto, York is the third largest university in Canada, with a strong community of 55,000 students, 7,000 faculty and administrative staff, and more than 330,000 alumni.

York University Libraries (YUL) has 44 full-time librarians and archivists and about 140 staff and student employees located in four libraries on the Keele campus and one on the bilingual Glendon campus. There will be a library on the new Markham campus (opening 2023); there is also an information centre located at York’s eco-campus in Costa Rica. With collections of over 2.4 million volumes, YUL is recognized for rich historical and community-engaged archives and special collections, progressive services for accessibility, innovative technologies, and robust services in support of teaching, learning, research and scholarship. YUL provides campus leadership on information literacy, open education, open data and other scholarly communication priorities.

The successful candidate will report to the director of Content Development and Analysis and work closely with the Head of Archives and Special Collections. These units are in the Division of Research & Open Scholarship, one of YUL’s three divisions (along with Teaching & Learning and Digital Engagement & Strategy). Research & Open Scholarship directly aligns with York’s priorities to amplify and sustain research and promote open models of scholarship to support institutional values on the democratization of knowledge. It supports scholarly and creative contributions by providing access to research collections and infrastructure supports for knowledge creation, research dissemination, discovery, and preservation.

Working in a collaborative team environment, the candidate will play a leadership role in managing acquisitions, overseeing the processing of media materials, and developing policy and plans related to preservation, retention and migration. The candidate will also serve as a rights management resource for the libraries, contributing to the leadership, planning and implementation of related educational initiatives and services.

Primary responsibilities include:

• Providing leadership in the strategic acquisition, licensing, maintenance and promotion of media collections, especially in the areas of music and film and streaming services.
• Developing and implementing best practices and workflows for the acquisition and licensing of media collections, including the securing of public performance rights for use of media in the classroom (with the content licensing librarian and the acquisitions team).
• Providing support for teaching and research consultations in the areas of content creation, rights management, and open licensing of media inclusive of music and film (with relevant departments).
• Playing a leadership role in responding to inquiries about media rights.
• Contributing to policy development and best practices related to the preservation, retention and migration of media collections (with others engaged in digital preservation).
• Supporting the acquisition and appraisal of music and media collections (with Archives and Special Collections).
• Participating in and maintaining oversight of processing, cataloguing, preserving, digitizing and curating media materials.
• Helping facilitate AODA compliance for media materials.
• Contributing to systems-wide collection development and collection analytics activities.

Other duties include:

• Collaborating with colleagues across the Libraries to support key priorities.
• Contributing to scholarly and professional knowledge by carrying out research, preparing presentations, publications, or other creative works, and participating in professional and scholarly associations.
• Actively participating in decision-making activities undertaken within the Libraries and the University through collegial contributions to committees and other groups.

The incumbent will keep abreast of relevant emerging areas of interest and innovation on campus and in the field, and will identify evolving digital tools and resources that advance scholarly investigation while building on traditional research methodologies. The successful applicant will engage in ongoing self-directed learning and professional development to bring new technologies and methodologies into York's teaching and research environment. The incumbent will also represent the Libraries on media collections organizations and initiatives, and will advance the profession through research, publication and participation in professional organizations.

York University Libraries pursues excellence in teaching by advancing the discovery, preservation, creation and dissemination of knowledge through leadership, creativity and collaboration. All librarians and archivists advance this mission and as such will be assigned teaching responsibilities. Other duties and disciplinary responsibilities may be assigned in light of institutional priorities or the incumbent's disciplinary knowledge and research interests.


The candidate must have a Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS) from an ALA-accredited program or its recognized equivalent.

Candidates must have experience developing and managing media collections.

Candidates’ media knowledge will be assessed on:

• Educational background or applied practice in a relevant area (cinema studies, music, dance, theatre, documentary filmmaking, video and recording arts, audio and film production, animation, etc.).
• Awareness of best practices and emerging standards related to the preservation of analogue film, sound recordings, and photographs, and digital preservation standards of digital audiovisual material.
• Applied experience managing media collections in both analogue and digital formats, and a capacity to contribute to digital preservation efforts and policy development.

Candidates must demonstrate:

• Leadership capacity and evidence of building effective working relationships with a variety of colleagues and stakeholders.
• Ability to advance new programmatic areas and outreach programs while engaging stakeholders in these developments.
• Ability to teach and present effectively in person and online.
• Aptitude for adapting to new responsibilities and environments, independent learning and engagement with technology and software, including technical troubleshooting ability.
• Ability to provide research and consultation services to all levels of researchers.
• Evidence or promise of research contributions in the form of publications or productions; professional development; active involvement in professional or scholarly organizations.

The candidate must have good interpersonal, communication and presentation skills; be capable of effective written and spoken communication in English; and have experience successfully managing multiple projects with competing deadlines.

About the position

This is a continuing appointment at the Assistant Librarian level starting January 1, 2022. York offers a competitive salary commensurate with qualifications and an exceptional benefits package. All York University positions are subject to budgetary approval.

Librarians and archivists at York University have academic status and are members of the York University Faculty Association bargaining unit (


York University has a policy on Accommodation in Employment for Persons with Disabilities and is committed to working towards a barrier-free workplace and to expanding the accessibility of the workplace to persons with disabilities. Candidates who require any accommodation at any stage during the selection process should contact the chair of the search committee.

Consideration will be given to those who have followed non-traditional career paths or had career interruptions.

York University is an Affirmative Action (AA) employer and strongly values diversity, including gender and sexual diversity, within its community. The AA Program, which applies to women, members of visible minorities (racialized groups), Aboriginal (Indigenous) people and persons with disabilities, can be found at or by calling the AA line at 416-736-5713. Applicants wishing to self-identify can do so by downloading, completing and submitting the forms found at

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens, permanent residents and Indigenous peoples in Canada will be given priority. No application will be considered without a completed mandatory Work Status Declaration form which is available through the application process and can also be found at


The deadline for receipt of completed applications is September 8, 2021. References for candidates who may be interviewed will then be requested and must be supplied by September 30. Final interviews will be in the weeks of October 18 and 25.

How to apply

Send an application letter, with a curriculum vitae and contact information for three references, to:

William Denton
Chair, Media Collections Librarian Search Committee
York University Libraries
516 Scott Library
4700 Keele St.
Toronto, ON M3J 1P3


Posting End Date: September 8, 2021