Pay for Curators in the United States sits in the ballpark of $48K per year. Experience level and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Curators. Health benefits are not claimed by all — about one in three lack any form of coverage — but the larger part have medical insurance, and more than two-fifths have dental, too. Female Curators make up most of the survey respondents at 73 percent. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
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$33,410 - $79,913
$33K
$48K
$80K
MEDIAN: $48,155
10%
50%
90%

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$11.69 - $30.13
$12
$17
$30
MEDIAN: $17.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$27K$54K$81K
Salary
$33,410 - $79,913  
   
Bonus
$1,000  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,994 - $76,766  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 123
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$11.69 - $30.13  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.50  
Overtime
$27.75  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$1,000  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,994 - $76,766  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 27

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Curator

Curators are professionals who oversee and manage a collection of some kind, typically related to art or science. They are often employed by museums, galleries, and universities but may be employed by any organization that has a valuable collection requiring care by someone with expertise in a particular field. They are expected to have at least a basic knowledge of the collection, as well as the ability to determine the best way to care for the pieces in it.

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Curator Tasks

  • Oversee the operation of the museum and off-site area storage.
  • Build rapport with donors and potential donors, and negotiate to acquire specific collections or individual items.
  • Assist in developing programs and special events.
  • Assist in developing a long-term plan for rotating exhibits with the goal of reaching new and diverse audiences.
  • Coordinate with the collections committee to ensure additions follow the museum's collection philosophy.

Common Career Paths for Curator


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Curators who transition into an upper level Museum Curator position will not necessarily make much more than they do in their current role. The average Museum Curator makes $42K a year.

Curator Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Curator

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $40K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $46K. Curators with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $50K. Veterans who have acquired more than 20 years report a median income of $59K, which is generally higher than the pay reported by other tenure groups.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Curator

Gender

Female
73 %
Male
27 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 16 votes.
Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
31%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
17%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Curator Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 28%

Experienced
up arrow 10%

National Average
$46,000

Mid-Career
up arrow 1%

Entry-Level
up arrow 13%

Skills That Affect Curator Salaries

Project Management
up arrow 36%

National Average
$46,000

Technical Writing
up arrow 10%

Research Analysis
up arrow 11%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 16 votes.

Gender

Female
73 %
Male
27 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
31%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
17%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 67%
dental benefits
Dental: 45%
vision benefits
Vision: 33%
dental benefits
None: 32%
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