Friday, November 8, 2013

PhET designer at CU Boulder

Specialist in Educational Simulation Design and Use for the PhET Interactive Simulations project at University of Colorado Boulder

The PhET Interactive Simulations Project ( at the University of Colorado Boulder has an opening for a full- or part-time Professional Research Assistant position with a focus on simulation design and testing as well as teacher professional development around simulation use. The PhET Team designs and develops interactive simulations (sims) for teaching and learning science and math, creates activities that couple with the sims, and makes all of these resources freely available to educators and students on the web. Research - at both K12 and college levels - is a major component of the PhET Project, and focuses on understanding aspects of design and use that lead to increases in student learning and student engagement.

PhET is currently engaged in several initiatives: building and studying simulations for middle school math and science, advancing our teacher professional development resources and support system, branching into tablet and touch-compatible simulation design, and advancing the use of simulations in undergraduate chemistry.

The successful applicant will join the vibrant and productive PhET team. The responsibilities will grow as the applicant becomes familiar with the project, and will include:
  1. Redesigning (as part of a 3-5 person team) existing PhET simulations, incorporating new findings on effective sim design and adapting designs for use on touch-devices. (Software programming is NOT required. PhET has a team of in-house software developers).
  2. Designing new PhET simulations
  3. Conducting user-testing through interviews of students using simulations
  4. Supporting simulation design, development, and research efforts - e.g. analyzing data, supporting classroom research studies, searching for web resources, etc.
  5. Helping to liaison to and support the K12 community.
  6. Assisting with marketing and dissemination of PhET resources to teachers: develop and represent PhET in online teaching forums and resources; run exhibit booths at national and local conferences; assist with teacher workshops.
  7. Responding to inquiries to PhET about science/math questions and new simulation ideas
Part-time candidates must be able to work at least 20 hours per week.

The successful candidate will work at the University of Colorado Boulder which is a national leader in STEM education with over 50 campus programs addressing STEM education and a new Center for Science Learning launched in 2012. The candidate will join the PhET Interactive Simulation project's growing team of 19 full and part-time faculty, researchers, teachers, software developers, and staff.

More information on PhET can be found at:

Start Date: There is some flexibility in the start date. We will consider start dates as early as January 1, 2014 and as late as July 1, 2014, with some preference for a start date of March 1 or earlier.

The University of Colorado is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to building a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities and veterans. Alternative formats of this ad can be provided upon request for individuals with disabilities by contacting the ADA Coordinator at

The University of Colorado conducts background checks on all final applicants being considered for employment.


We will consider applicants who have completed a Bachelor's degree or higher, majoring in science or math education, or in a science or math discipline with education courses and experience.
Applicant must be highly organized, attentive to detail, proficient with Excel, adaptive, capable of multi-tasking, and able to complete projects in a timely manner. Applicant must have experience in K12 science or math education, have excellent communication skills, be able to work effectively in a team environment, and be skilled in computer use, typing, and writing skills.
Experience working in or with K12 schools, teachers, and students is required. Experience teaching at any level is highly desirable. Familiarity with PhET and experience using PhET in teaching is desirable, but not required.

To apply:

All applicants must apply through JobsAtCU website:
Applicants must complete "Design Task I" and "Data Task II" (see below), complete the Faculty/Exempt Professional and EEO Data (application) form, and upload a cover letter, a resume/curriculum vitae, and a statement describing your experience in science and/or math education along with your thoughts about teaching and learning - as 'Document 1'. In addition, a proof of degree (unofficial transcript) must be uploaded as 'a copy of diploma or unofficial transcripts', the Design Task must be uploaded as 'Research/Creative Work/Artist Statement', and the Data Task must be emailed. Finally, provide 3 references. We will solicit a letter of recommendation from one or more of these references.

Please visit the following link to complete the "Design Task I" and "Data Task II". Upload "Design Task I" as 'Research/Creative Work/Artist Statement' and email "Data Task II" to

Please email with any questions about the application process.

Review of applications will begin on Nov. 15, 2013, and continue until the position is filled.