Museum Technicians and Conservators
SOC: 25-4013.00


Restore, maintain, or prepare objects in museum collections for storage, research, or exhibit. May work with specimens such as fossils, skeletal parts, or botanicals; or artifacts, textiles, or art. May identify and record objects or install and arrange them in exhibits. Includes book or document conservators.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
11,300 employed

Projected (2024):
11,900 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Armorer Technician
  • Art Conservator
  • Art Objects Repairer
  • Art Preparator
  • Artifacts Conservator
  • Ceramic Restorer
  • Collections Curator
  • Collections Manager
  • Collections Specialist
  • Conservation Assistant
  • Conservation Technician
  • Conservation Worker
  • Conservator
  • Curator
  • Curator of Collections
  • Curatorial Assistant
  • Director of Exhibits
  • Document Restorer
  • Ethnographic Materials Conservator
  • Exhibit Preparator
  • Exhibit Technician
  • Exhibition Designer
  • Exhibits Coordinator
  • Exhibits Curator
  • Fine Arts Packer
  • Head of Conservation
  • Lace and Textiles Restorer
  • Museum Exhibit Technician
  • Museum Preparator
  • Museum Registrar
  • Museum Technician
  • Objects Conservator
  • Paintings Conservator
  • Paper and Prints Restorer
  • Paper Conservator
  • Preparator
  • Research Assistant
  • Restoration Technician
  • Sculpture Conservator
  • Textile Conservator
  • Transportation Equipment Maintenance Worker
  • Water Restoration Technician

  • Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed


    A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.


    Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Technology Design
  • Programming
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Troubleshooting
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • Fine Arts
  • History and Archeology
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Install, arrange, assemble, and prepare artifacts for exhibition, ensuring the artifacts' safety, reporting their status and condition, and identifying and correcting any problems with the set up.
  • Coordinate exhibit installations, assisting with design, constructing displays, dioramas, display cases, and models, and ensuring the availability of necessary materials.
  • Determine whether objects need repair and choose the safest and most effective method of repair.
  • Clean objects, such as paper, textiles, wood, metal, glass, rock, pottery, and furniture, using cleansers, solvents, soap solutions, and polishes.
  • Prepare artifacts for storage and shipping.
  • Supervise and work with volunteers.
  • Specialize in particular materials or types of object, such as documents and books, paintings, decorative arts, textiles, metals, or architectural materials.
  • Recommend preservation procedures, such as control of temperature and humidity, to curatorial and building staff.
  • Classify and assign registration numbers to artifacts and supervise inventory control.
  • Perform on-site field work which may involve interviewing people, inspecting and identifying artifacts, note-taking, viewing sites and collections, and repainting exhibition spaces.
  • Repair, restore and reassemble artifacts, designing and fabricating missing or broken parts, to restore them to their original appearance and prevent deterioration.
  • Prepare reports on the operation of conservation laboratories, documenting the condition of artifacts, treatment options, and the methods of preservation and repair used.
  • Study object documentation or conduct standard chemical and physical tests to ascertain the object's age, composition, original appearance, need for treatment or restoration, and appropriate preservation method.
  • Cut and weld metal sections in reconstruction or renovation of exterior structural sections and accessories of exhibits.
  • Perform tests and examinations to establish storage and conservation requirements, policies, and procedures.
  • Plan and conduct research to develop and improve methods of restoring and preserving specimens.
  • Notify superior when restoration of artifacts requires outside experts.
  • Estimate cost of restoration work.
  • Preserve or direct preservation of objects, using plaster, resin, sealants, hardeners, and shellac.
  • Build, repair, and install wooden steps, scaffolds, and walkways to gain access to or permit improved view of exhibited equipment.
  • Construct skeletal mounts of fossils, replicas of archaeological artifacts, or duplicate specimens, using a variety of materials and hand tools.
  • Direct and supervise curatorial, technical, and student staff in the handling, mounting, care, and storage of art objects.
  • Photograph objects for documentation.
  • Lead tours and teach educational courses to students and the general public.
  • Deliver artwork on courier trips.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Adjustable widemouth pliers
  • Air abrasive tools
  • Binocular light compound microscopes
  • Brazing equipment
  • Carpenters' chisels
  • Claw hammers
  • Cold chisels
  • Cordless drills
  • Dental explorers
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital cameras
  • Digital micrometers
  • Digitizers
  • Dusting brushes
  • Handheld digital thermometers
  • Hygrometers
  • Infrared cameras
  • Laboratory scalpels
  • Laptop computers
  • Mallets
  • Oxyacetylene welding equipment
  • Personal computers
  • Photocopying equipment
  • Power saws
  • Soldering irons
  • Stereo microscopes
  • Temperature sensors
  • Ultraviolet UV examination lights
  • Vacuum cleaner micro-tools
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Wire cutters
  • Wire strippers
  • X ray examination equipment
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software
  • Gallery Systems EmbARK
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft Visual FoxPro
  • Microsoft Word
  • PastPerfect Software PastPerfect
  • Questor Systems ARGUS
  • Questor Systems QScan32

  • education training and library

    industry stats

    SOC: 25-0000

    Total Employed: 8,542,670

    Average Annual Salary: $53,000