Research Assistant

Apply now Job no: 522785
Work type: Staff Full Time
Campus: UMass Boston
Department: Ctr for Social Devel & Ed
Pay Grade: 27
Categories: Professional Staff Union (PSU), Research

General Summary: 

The Research Assistant (RA) for the Center for Social Development and Education (CSDE) will provide project coordination and research support for exciting and dynamic research and program evaluation related to youth with intellectual disabilities. The RA will work with a team of researchers on projects focusing on school belonging, attitudes and perceptions of disability, social inclusion of students with disabilities in schools, and social identity development in children and adolescents. Under the supervision of the Project Director, and as part of the larger research and evaluation team, the RA will oversee and coordinate the daily operations of one or more projects and assist in study design and data collection. The RA will also be expected to help prepare written reports, conference presentations, and journal articles summarizing study findings. For more information about the CSDE please visit:


  • Oversee and coordinate the daily operations of one or more research studies on a large, multi-objective research project.
  • Conduct literature searches to develop hypotheses and study variables.
  • Develop research protocols and methodologies for data collection, in collaboration with other members of the research team.
  • Coordinate and monitor the administration of online program surveys in Qualtrics.
  • Oversee and manage data collection occurring at the individual, school, and state levels, including utilizing computer software (e.g., R, SPSS, and Qualtrics) or developing systems to enhance efficiency and effectiveness of study operations and data management.
  • Monitor and review data collection, data entry, informed consent procedures, and related activities to ensure compliance with Institutional Review Board (IRB).
  • With oversight from the Project Director, and in collaboration with other members of the research and evaluation team, conduct site visits/observations at schools and/or conduct in-person or telephone/virtual interviews with school staff, students with and without disabilities, and parents.
  • Coordinate and conduct qualitative data analysis, including entering and coding open-ended responses on surveys, and coding and analyzing transcripts from interviews or focus groups.
  • Coordinate and conduct intermediate and complex quantitative data analysis, such as analysis of variance (ANOVA), chi-square, or regression analyses.
  • In collaboration with the Project Director, write up study findings and collaborate on written products for a variety of venues, including articles for journal publications, conferences, collaborators, and funding agencies.
  • Collaborate in making presentations at meetings, conferences, and webinars.
  • Establish and maintain communication and collaboration with partners, including schools and other relevant collaborators.
  • In collaboration with the Project Director, select and train new Research Assistants, Graduate Research Assistants, and/or interns.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Preferred Qualifications:

Bachelor’s degree in psychology or Sociology, or a related field, is required. Coursework in basic and intermediate research methodology and quantitative statistics, and a minimum of one year of previous experience as a Research Assistant is required. A thesis presenting original research can be substituted for the one year of previous Research Assistant experience. Experience using statistical programs, particularly SPSS or R, for performing intermediate-level quantitative data analysis independently is required. Excellent writing skills at the level expected for publishing articles is also required.  The incumbent will be required to travel locally to schools and may be required to travel nationally. 

  • Master’s degree.
  • More than one year of experience as a Research Assistant.
  • Experience with scale development or measurement design.
  • Intermediate to advanced statistical skills using SPSS.
  • Experience with qualitative research methods and software, such as Atlas.ti or NVivo.
  • Experience with fieldwork, data collection, focus groups and interviews.
  • Authorship on a peer-reviewed journal article or experience presenting at a conference. 

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Exemplary writing skills and familiarity with writing styles common for practitioners.
  • Demonstrated understanding and use of intermediate-level statistical analysis and statistical concepts.
  • Demonstrated understanding and use of qualitative methodologies.
  • Demonstrated competency working independently and as a member of a team.
  • Content knowledge in one or more of the following: developmental psychology (with a specific focus on adolescent development) or social psychology (with a specific focus on identity or group processes).
  • Ability to collaborate and oversee completion of tasks.
  • Ability to manage multiple competing project deadlines.
  • Strong interpersonal, organizational and problem-solving skills.

For Professional Unit Positions:

  • Is this job required to be on-call? No.

Background Check Information: 

In addition to the mandatory standard background check package, please select additional products from the a la carte menu below. 

UMass Boston Standard Background Package (Mandatory)

  • Criminal Felony & Misdemeanor - 7 years (a) - Unlimited # of counties as revealed by SSN Trace
  • Federal Criminal
  • Massachusetts CORI
  • Education Report - highest degree (b)
  • Employment Report - 7 years, previous employer
  • National Sex Offender Search
  • Professional Licenses Report - per license
  • SSN Trace
  • SSN Validation

Application Instructions: 

Please apply online with your resume, cover letter and list of three professional references.

Review of candidates will begin following the application closing date. 

Only Internal candidates in the Professional Staff Bargaining Unit will be considered during the first 10 business days of the posting.  All other candidates will be considered after that period. 

Salary Ranges for the appropriate Pay Grade can be found at the following link: 

Grade:  27            

Salary Ranges

This is an exempt union position. This is a grant funded position with a current end date of Dec 31, 2024, subject to renewal contingent on funding and university needs.

All official salary offers must be approved by Human Resources.

UMass Boston is committed to the full inclusion of all qualified individuals. As part of this commitment, we will ensure that persons with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodations for the hiring process. If reasonable accommodation is needed, please contact or 617-287-5150.








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The University of Massachusetts is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Title IX employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, or other protected class.