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Professional Research Assistant

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Posting Close Date:


Date Posted:


Job Summary

We are encouraging applications for an individual to join our research team at CU Boulder, with the option of working remotely. The ideal candidate will take part in a variety of collaborative activities related to designing professional learning with state and district leaders to improve their science assessment systems.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

The mission of the Institute of Cognitive Science (ICS) at CU-Boulder is to understand and enhance human cognition, learning, and development through the creation of interdisciplinary partnerships. ICS fosters rich scientific interchange across researchers from a broad range of fields including Artificial Intelligence, Linguistics, Psychology, Neuroscience, Computer Science, Philosophy, and Education. Within the institute of Cognitive Science, inquiryHub ( is a research practice partnership engaged in the research and development of materials, tools, and processes to promote equitable student learning of STEM. 

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

Network Coordination Assistance
  • Coordinate coherence driven professional development with state and district leaders across the US.
  • Work with CU and Learning Policy Institute Leadership to support cross-network activities.

Facilitation of State-Level Educator Learning in Focal States
  • Manage teams, logistics, budgets, timelines, and ongoing needs with districts.
  • Design, develop, and deliver professional development within the inquiryHub infrastructure at CU and as a consultant to other related projects.
  • Coordinate with states to identify state-specific needs.
  • Adapt existing materials related to supporting the adaptation and design of science performance assessments to meet state needs.
  • Build relevant OER materials for professional learning.

Develop Model Assessments for Use in Educator Learning 
  • Create and improve assessments at different grade levels for widely used NGSS-aligned materials, specifically Amplify and OpenSciEd.
  • As required in state level engagements, adapt assessments or create sample assessments for use in educator learning.
  • Where feasible, coordinate collection of student work associated with sample assessments for use in educator learning.

Engagement (Dissemination)
  • Coordinate with states to support cross-state sharing related to local assessment work.
  • Collaboratively engage in collecting and analyzing research data, and disseminating research findings.

What We Can Offer

The anticipated starting salary is $70,000 to $100,000, commensurate with experience and education. 


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be Encouraged. Be Resourceful. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • BS or BA.
  • At least three years of experience developing multiple types of assessment for elementary or secondary science that are aligned to the science teaching and learning as called for by the National Research Council’s Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards.
  • Experience leading professional development for science teachers at the elementary or secondary level.
  • Experience working within systems at either the district or state level to create more coherent guidance for teachers related to teaching and assessment.
  • Five years’ minimum experience in working in K-12 science education in public schools.
  • Experience working with underserved communities and with marginalized student populations.

What You Will Need

  • Science content understanding and knowledge of how to assess disciplinary core ideas in one or more of the subject areas identified in the Next Generation Science Standards.
  • Understanding of the interests and social identities of Black, Latinx, Native American students, girls and gender nonbinary students, students with disabilities, and/or emerging multilingual students and the systemic obstacles to learning these groups face in formal and informal settings in the US.
  • Understanding of strategies for developing language and literacy with students designated as emerging multilingual.
  • Understanding of culturally sustaining pedagogies in general and how to apply them for one or more specific cultural identities in particular.
  • Knowledge of how to develop materials that support teachers in recognizing and honoring the diverse sensemaking repertoires students bring to science classrooms.
  • A commitment to improving science education.
  • A commitment to equity and social justice in education.
  • Strong internal motivation.
  • A strong orientation to supporting educator learning from an asset perspective.
  • Flexibility and openness. 
  • Excellent writing and oral communication skills.

What We Would Like You To Have

Master's Degree.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover Letter
  3. 1 Letter of Recommendation (Not Confidential)
  4. PDF Sample of Work: An example of an original science assessment designed by the candidate with any annotations supporting its quality.
 Review of applications will begin on Monday, August 16 and will continue until the position is filled.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Boulder Campus Human Resources

Posting Contact Email: