Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Postdoc/Early Researcher with PhET at CU-Boulder

PhET is hiring! Here’s the full job posting (below).

Professional Research Associate (Postdoc or Early Researcher) in Inclusive Simulation Research in STEM Education with the PhET Interactive Simulations Project at the University of Colorado Boulder
The PhET Interactive Simulations Project ( at the University of Colorado Boulder has an opening for a Research Associate (experienced postdoc or early researcher) position with a focus on research involving multimodal interface features and their use by students with and without disabilities. The PhET Team designs and develops interactive simulations for teaching and learning science and mathematics with supporting professional development materials and makes all of these resources available for free to educators and students around the world. Research at the K-12 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 engagement and learning. This particular position is part of PhET’s initiative to expand the multimodal features set of the interactive simulations.
Job Description
The successful applicant will join the vibrant and productive PhET team. Their responsibilities will grow as the applicant becomes familiar with the project, to include:
Designing accessibility features (as part of a 3- to 5-person team) into existing PhET HTML5 simulations. (Note: The PhET project has a team of professional software developers that will implement accessibility features in the simulations. Software programming skills are not required, though knowledge of basic coding principles is a plus – see description of desirable qualifications below.)
- Leading research efforts - collecting and analyzing data of students using simulations, including interview, classroom-based or informal learning research studies, e.g., developing connections and collaborations with teachers, conducting classroom observations, etc.
- Writing research manuscripts (including collaborating on, planning, outlining, drafting, and editing manuscript content) and attending and presenting at research conferences
- Mentoring graduate student researchers, supporting the onboarding of new team members to the PhET project, collaborating with software developers on prototypes for deployment within studies
- Conducting user-testing of simulation use through interviews of students with and without disabilities
- Serving as a PhET project liaison to the multimodal tehnology, accessibility, accessible technology, education research, and STEM and Special Education teacher communities
- Assisting with dissemination of the PhET project’s resources to the accessibility and teacher communities, which may include: creating teacher supporting materials for the PhET website; developing and representing PhET in online forums and resources; running exhibit booths at national and local conferences; and/or assisting with teacher workshops.
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 the Center for Science Learning. The candidate will join the PhET Interactive Simulation project's growing team of 20+ full and part-time faculty, researchers, teachers, software developers, and staff. More information on PhET can be found at:
Start Date:
The start date is flexible. We will consider start dates as early as October 15, 2019 and as late as May 15, 2020, with a preference for an early start date.
 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.

Required Minimum Qualifications:
We will consider applicants who:
Have completed a:
- Ph.D. in Human Computer Interaction, Human-centered Computing or a closely related field
- Ph.D. in Physics, Physics Education, Chemistry, Chemistry Education or a closely related field, with a strong interest and background in science education
- Ed.D (with a strong science or mathematics background) in Science Education or Special Education or closely related field, or a
- Ph.D. in Educational Psychology or a closely related field
- M. Des. (with a strong science or mathematics background) emphasizing inclusive design, educational design, and/or emerging technologies
by Dec 31, 2019 (minimally, all degree requirements must be met if the degree has not yet been conferred by the deadline).
- Have experience conducting research in formal or informal K-12 learning environments
- Are highly organized, and attentive to details
- Are proficient with common workplace software (e.g., spreadsheets and word processing) and open to rapidly learning new applications (e.g., Slack, Github)
- Have excellent technical writing and presentation skills
- Have excellent professional and workplace communication skills (e.g., email)
- Is highly capable of advancing multiple projects with overlapping deadlines, and able to complete projects in a timely manner.
- Can, with reasonable accuracy, estimate time to complete tasks (e.g., drafting a manuscript, designing an interview protocol, etc.)

Highly Desirable Qualifications
While not required, any of the following qualifications are highly desirable:
- Experience conducting research involving students with disabilities or students from other underrepresented groups, and/or their teachers
- Experience with assistive technology (e.g., alternative input devices, screen reader software, etc.)
- Knowledge of the semantic use of HTML and the main principles of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines by the World Wide Web Consortium
- An undergraduate degree in a STEM discipline (e.g., physics, mathematics, computer science, etc.)
- Familiarity with PhET simulations and their use in learning environments
- Demonstrated interest in language (e.g., multilingual, linguistics, natural language processing, etc.), sound (e.g., playing an instrument, sonification, etc.), haptics (force-applying devices), or research at the interface of technology and tangible lab activities
To apply: