Monday, November 26, 2007


Position description:
Research Associate (Job code 9702). Full-time (100%), 12-month (A-term), K-term (annual renewable) Professional and Administrative (P&A) position, renewable for up to three years and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

Salary: $42,000

Required Qualifications:
* Ph.D. in physics education, physics, or science education
* Familiarity with and demonstrated interest in physics education research

Preferred Qualifications:
* Experience with research in student learning and/or problem solving
* Experience with collecting and analyzing student data

* Participate in the design, implementation, and evaluation of a study to assess the educational impact on students of the use of web-based coaches for problem solving in introductory physics
* Help in the development of a rubric to assess students' written problem solutions, including the creation and implementation of procedures for applying the rubric and analyzing data to determine its reliability and validity.
* Oversee the collection of data regarding students' problem solving skills from both individual students and entire classes and organize and maintain a database for the project.
* Supervise and assist in the training of personnel to use the rubric to analyze data on students' problem solving skills
* Collaborate with project PIs on the dissemination of findings from the research study
* Participate in some teaching of the introductory physics courses as necessary to become familiar with the instructional methods at the University of Minnesota.
* Assist as necessary in the production of the web-based coaches for problem solving

Program/Unit Description:
The Physics Education Research (PER) group at the University of Minnesota concentrates on effecting systemic reform in higher education physics classes with a focus on problem solving. The group is currently working on developing and testing computer software to coach students in problem solving and developing a generic assessment of problem solving skills.

More information on the Minnesota PER group can be found at

Application Instructions:
Interested applicants must apply online at
Application materials include a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and contact information for three references.

Questions about the position can be directed to Leon Hsu ( or Ken Heller (