Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Part-time (or short term) PER postdoc position at the University of Colorado

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Researcher in Physics Education in the Department of Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU). The postdoc will work on a project titled “Quantum Education and Workforce Development.”  This project aims to answer the question: what skills, knowledge, and competencies do academic/government researchers and industrial partners want for quantum careers at the BS/MS/PhD level? This project will use interviews with academic and government lab researchers and quantum industries to answer this question.

The results from this study will be published for wide dissemination, as well as will inform a multi-college Quantum Education Task-force at the University of Colorado, which will create an implementation and assessment plan to make the new quantum workforce and education programs a reality.

The project is run jointly by Heather Lewandowski at the University of Colorado and Ben Zwickl at the Rochester Institute of Technology. The successful candidate may work remotely on the project or be located at CU. The total time for the project is the equivalent of eight months at full time work. This can be spread out over up to a year.

Candidates must have a Ph.D. in physics, physics education research, or closely related field. Prior experience with quantum physics research or physics education research is preferred but not required.

To apply for the position please send the following materials to lewandoh@colorado.edu.

1. Cover letter that addresses the required and preferred qualifications described above, describes the applicant’s interest in joining the project, states the desired location and duration of work, and answers the following questions:

1.A) How do your previous experiences prepare you to work cooperatively and productively with colleagues and supervisors?

1.B) In this postdoctoral research position, you will gain significant skills in physics education research. How do you envision those skills will be useful to you later in your career?

1.C) If you prefer to work remotely rather than at CU, please describe any experiences which demonstrate effective collaboration and productivity in a remote working context.

2. CV with references listed.

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 hr-ada@colorado.edu.

PER Research Associate, MIT

Research Associate MIT: Physics Education Research

RELATE.MIT.edu group, Dave Pritchard
The REsearch on Learning Assessing and Tutoring Effectively group is studying and improving learning in demonstrable ways. Central to this is assessment: help create/improve our (not yet) complete set of research-based week by week topical quizzes and an assessment of reasoning skills for mechanics. Our goal is to provide students and teachers formative/summative assessments with resolution down to the sub-topic level, as well as evaluations of higher level skills.  This involves identifying and improving existing problems as well as authoring new ones, while always analyzing their performance and (hopefully) demonstrating their superiority over traditional hand-graded problems. The major responsibility of the research associate will be to collect and augment assessments, and ideas from the research literature, write new questions, and help understand the data.  We are also analyzing a large (17k) data set on the FCI emphasizing the diagnosis of specific student shortcomings on the pretest by mining information from the incorrect responses – ultimately to guide instruction. 
This postdoc will include curating resources, performing experimental/control group experiments to research which instructional resources teach which topics & learning objectives best, and especially the characteristics of expertise.  RELATE has expertise in educational data mining, psychometrics including multi-dimensional item response theory, and experience in designing online experiments. (see http://RELATE.mit.edu)  Our postdocs generally participate in the physics department’s teaching and online education.

Requisite Knowledge and Skills:

Knowledge of Physics (esp. mechanics and E&M) and education research literature
Programming ability with Python and Statistics/data analysis skills, r
Teaching experience in introductory physics
Writing novel and clear questions and research articles

A Ph.D or Ed.D in physics or science education research, statistics and data mining, or cognitive science etc. is desired, but a physics BS with following teaching experience is OK.  Applicant must be comfortable working both alone and with others.  All former RELATE alumni have obtained positions in academia or education companies. Inquiries and applications (CV, cover letter, and list of at least three references) should be sent to relateMIT@gmail.com (please include “postdoc application” in subject line). Review of applications will begin immediately; starting date June to late Fall 2019. 

MIT is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer. For more information check http://web.mit.edu/physics/about/employment.html and http://relate.mit.edu/jobs.html .
Prof. David E. Pritchard  dpritch@mit.edu
Room 26-241 Dept. of Physics, MIT
77 Massachusetts Ave. , Cambridge, MA 02139.