Michigan Librarian Salary Guide - 2022

Last Reviewed: February 18th, 2022

School Librarians

How are school librarian salaries determined in Michigan?

Michigan school librarian salaries are determined by the school area and size what that means is that the larger the school the higher the budget allocated to its library services will be. Based on the educational background of the librarian and the requirements of the school in terms of whether they need a librarian full-time or not, the salary of the librarian will be determined. The Michigan Department of Education also has all the different organizations in the state release a transparency report so as to monitor the compensations provided. 

How can one increase their salary?

Increasing your salary in public libraries is usually heavily influenced by the years of experience that you have as a librarian as well as your level of education. Normally, entry-level jobs tend to offer less compensation but there tends to be a gradual increase in the salary offered yearly. This is something that you can negotiate and see your school’s perspective on before you sign your contract. 

Librarians and Media Specialists Salaries in urban areas of Michigan

Metro Area # Employed Mean Salary
Ann Arbor, MI 320 $73,170
Battle Creek, MI 50 $61,340
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI 1,520 $55,940
Flint, MI 90 $57,290
Grand Rapids-Wyoming, MI 290 $53,730
Jackson, MI 40 $55,560
Kalamazoo-Portage, MI 90 $50,860
Lansing-East Lansing, MI 270 $66,100
Monroe, MI 40 N/A
Muskegon, MI 40 $55,690
Niles-Benton Harbor, MI 40 $44,890
Saginaw, MI Not released $46,450
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics - 2020

Librarians and Media Specialists Salaries in rural areas of Michigan

Metro Area # Employed Mean Salary
Upper Peninsula of Michigan nonmetropolitan area 60 $49,610
Northeast Lower Peninsula of Michigan nonmetropolitan area 110 $34,430
Northwest Lower Peninsula of Michigan nonmetropolitan area Not released $32,970
Balance of Lower Peninsula of Michigan nonmetropolitan area 220 $47,500
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics - 2020

Resources within Michigan providing assistance for better school librarian pay.

As many schools in Michigan have Media specialists instead of librarians, the first organization that you can refer to lobby for better pay is the Michigan Association for Media in Education. This organization specializes in School Library Media and can assist you in your lobbying efforts. You can also connect with the Michigan Library Association which is the largest association for librarians in the state. 

Public Librarians

How are public librarian salaries determined in Michigan? 

Public librarian salaries in the state of Michigan are determined in a similar way to the way school librarian salaries are determined. The area and size of the library as well as the number of people that it is servicing will determine how much the budget for the library will be. It is out of that budget that the salary of the librarian will be taken. The exact amount paid to the librarian will also be determined by their education level and years of experience. 

How can one increase their salary?

In public libraries, the best way to increase your salary is by opting for more specialized positions, rather than for general or entry-level positions. If you have a higher education degree or specific certificates you can use those to your advantage as you negotiate your salary increase. Specialized positions, such as archivist or subject librarians also tend to offer higher compensation as they require even further qualifications. 

Resources within Michigan providing assistance for better public librarian pay.

To lobby for better pay you can look at the organization that is dealing with library funding and salaries in your area and district. A list of those can be found on the Michigan state website. You can also seek assistance and resources through the Michigan Library Association and the Library of Michigan webpage. Both of these organizations can provide you with contact and information for your lobbying efforts and needs.    

Academic Librarians

How are academic librarian salaries determined in Michigan?

Academic salaries in the state of Michigan are determined by the academic institution in which the library is located. For the running of the library, there are usually both public and private funds used and as such, depending on the size of the library there may be higher compensation for the academic librarians in place. The position of the librarian within the library will also be a determining factor when it comes to the compensation that they will receive.  

How can one increase their salary?

Academic libraries tend to provide librarians with ample opportunity for growth. This is because most academic libraries either work with a rank system, which means that as a librarian accrues knowledge and experience, they are moved to higher positions, or they offer many different specialized positions that tend to offer higher compensation as they require further specialization and education from the candidates that take these positions. In any case, looking through your library’s openings and applying for specialized positions is one of the best ways of increasing your salary. Increasing your research output might also increase your salary depending on the institution that you are employed at. 

How can an academic librarian get tenured and how does this affect their lifetime earning potential?

Tenure usually means that as an academic librarian you have reached the highest ranks available in your institution and that you have worked there for a number of years. While in many institutions’ tenure does not mean that you will get a pay increase, it usually means that you will not have to worry about job instability. In most cases, tenure is a lifetime position and it is one that you will only lose under very serious circumstances. 

To get tenured the qualifications vary depending on the institution that you are in. Usually, you need to have a certain number of years working there, have a higher education degree, and be recommended by other faculty members. If you want to get tenured, we recommend looking through your institution’s webpage as they usually have a document outlining the requirements and procedure. 

Resources within Michigan providing assistance for better academic librarian pay.

Michigan has a dedicated academic library association known as the Michigan Academic Library Association. This organization is the main resource for academic librarians who wish to lobby for higher pay. The organization is also a chapter of the Association of College & Research Libraries and as such it has nationwide resources and lobbyist experts that can also assist you in your efforts.