Curator Salary

Pay for Curators in the United States sits in the ballpark of $48K per year. Lower pay rates hover around $28K, and the higher rates verge on $71K per year. Experience level and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. One-fourth of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, a fair number report medical coverage and one-half claim dental coverage as well. Female Curators make up most of the survey respondents at 70 percent. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$29,869 - $72,233
(Median)
$30K
$48K
$72K
MEDIAN: $48,049
10%
50%
90%

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$10.12 - $29.87
(Median)
$10
$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$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$29,869 - $72,233  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,400  
Profit Sharing
$1,050  
Commission
$225.00  
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).
)
$28,129 - $70,942  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 201
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$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$10.12 - $29.87  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.50  
Overtime
$25.50  
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$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,400  
   
Commission
$225.00  
Profit Sharing
$1,050  
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).
)
$28,129 - $70,942  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 41
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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

  • 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.
  • Coordinate museum curators and collections management faculty.
  • 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.

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Pay by Experience Level for Curator

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


For many Curators, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. In this position, someone who has worked for fewer than five years can expect a median salary of $39K. The median for people with five to 10 years of experience is only a little bit higher at $44K. Curators who work for 10 to 20 years in their occupation tend to earn about $50K. As Curators reach more than two decades on the job, compensation remains commensurate with experience; the average pay in this group is $56K.

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Experience Affects Curator Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 24%

Experienced
up arrow 10%

National Average
$45,000

Mid-Career
up arrow 4%

Entry-Level
up arrow 15%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 23 votes.

Gender

Female
70 %
Male
30 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
30%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
32%
20 years or more
17%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 71%
dental benefits
Dental: 51%
medical benefits
Vision: 37%
dental benefits
None: 27%
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