Postdoctoral Associate in Science Assessment Research

published Sep 12, 2022 8:38am
Applications are invited for a full time postdoctoral associate in science assessment research at BSCS
Science Learning in Colorado Springs, CO. The successful candidate will work as a researcher and
assessment developer on an assessment validity project. The associate will serve as a researcher on
an NSF-funded project led by Dr. Cari Herrmann Abell, who will serve as the associate's
postdoctoral advisor. The Postdoctoral Associate will be appointed for a two-year period with the
possibility of extension for two additional years.
Postdoctoral Associate Appointments at BSCS
A postdoctoral associate position at BSCS is a mentored apprenticeship. Postdoctoral associates play
a significant role in research, instructional materials development, and/or professional learning
projects and engage in a customized postdoctoral learning program with the mentorship of a BSCS
research scientist. BSCS provides postdoctoral associates with a salary, full benefits, and an annual
budget for professional development and participation in academic conferences. At the completion of
a postdoctoral associate appointment, an individual will have acquired additional understanding and
abilities required for a research and/or development career in science education and will have
authored additional publications and other scholarly works. In collaboration with their mentor, every
postdoctoral associate develops a professional development plan with a set of specific goals for the
period of their appointment. BSCS research scientists will also provide postdoctoral associates with
mentorship in grant writing, manuscript writing, and presentation skills. Postdoctoral associates often
serve as mentors to research assistants and associates.
This Postdoctoral Associate in Science Assessment Research position
This postdoctoral associate will work with research scientists to co-develop and validate assessments,
conduct student interviews, collect and analyze data, present research findings at conferences, and
author manuscripts. The postdoctoral associate will have the opportunity to work on one or more
projects during their time at BSCS, including the NSF-funded research project: Exploring the Validity
of Three-Dimensional Assessments (EVA). The project involves conducting empirical studies to
explore what phenomenon-driven, three-dimensional, science assessments are actually assessing and
whether they are suitable for use as outcome measures in studies of instructional effectiveness. The
primary duty of the postdoctoral associate will include working collaboratively with the project team
to collect and revise extant assessments and study how validly the assessments measure middle
school students' three-dimensional science understanding. They will also conduct cognitive
think-aloud interviews with these assessments to understand how students apply their understanding
to make sense of the phenomena that drive the assessments.
Required Qualifications
- Ph.D. in science education, measurement, statistics, or evaluation;
Desirable Qualifications
- Strong understanding of one or more of the natural sciences;
- Familiarity with the Next Generation Science Standards and OpenSciEd instructional
materials, particularly at the middle school level;
- Knowledge of the educational literature on three-dimensional science assessment,
reliability and validity, and equity in assessment;
- Strong skills in two or more of the following areas: assessment development,
measurement theory, statistics, psychometrics, and mixed-methods research.
Essential Qualities and Abilities
- a commitment to improving science education;
- a commitment to equity and social justice in education;
- strong internal motivation;
- flexibility and openness to learning;
- ability and desire to work collaboratively, to be mentored, to work independently, and
to mentor younger researchers;
- project management, time management, communication, and writing skills
About BSCS Science Learning
BSCS Science Learning is an independent, nonprofit organization that develops, studies, and
disseminates powerful approaches to science education. Our mission is to improve science teaching
and learning through research-driven innovation. Founded in 1958, BSCS has brought the experience
of inquiry learning to millions of students and teachers across the U.S. and around the world. Today,
BSCS conducts research on how to improve science teaching and learning, develops instructional
materials, offers professional learning programs for teachers, and conducts leadership development
programs. Underlying all this work is our commitment to providing all young people with equitable,
inclusive, and just science learning opportunities.
Additional Information
The full-time, annual salary for this position ranges from $65,000 to $70,000 depending on
experience and qualifications. The position also includes a $5,000 budget for professional
development activities, including conference attendance. This position requires public speaking and
BSCS offers competitive compensation and a generous package of benefits, including paid time off,
medical and dental insurance, and a retirement plan. We also offer a flexible and inclusive work
environment, with a strong commitment to the professional growth of all staff.
BSCS's offices are in Colorado Springs, the #2 city in US News & World Report's 2022 Best Places
to Live. Located along the Front Range of the Rockies one hour south of Denver, Colorado Springs is
known for a mild climate, a vibrant arts community, and year-round outdoor recreation. Preference
will be given to candidates who live or are interested in relocating to Colorado Springs or are living
in the DC metro area to be in close proximity to colleagues. For additional information about BSCS
and our work, prospective applicants are encouraged to review the BSCS website (
BSCS Commitment to Diversity
BSCS is committed to advancing science learning that is inclusive, meaningful, and advances the
work of social and environmental justice. To learn more, visit
BSCS Science Learning is committed to the recruitment of a diverse staff so that we can bring the
broadest possible range of perspectives to our mission of improving science teaching and learning for
a diverse audience. We are an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will receive consideration
for employment without regard to age, race, sex, color, religion, national origin, disability (physical
and/or mental), sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, veteran status, military obligations,
marital status, pregnancy, genetic information, or any status protected by federal, state, or local law.
To Apply:
Applicants should send the following to Please put "Postdoctoral Associate" in the
subject line.
1. Research Statement (1 page) that describes their relevant prior research experiences and
current research interests.
2. Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice Statement (1 page) that describes (1) relevant prior
experience responding to the interests, social identities, and obstacles to learning faced by
marginalized populations, and (2) your views about equity, inclusion, and social justice in
science education and how they have been shaped by your educational, personal, and/or
professional experiences.
3. Curriculum Vita
4. Cover letter describing your interest and qualifications in the position. In your cover letter
include a list of three professional references and whether you prefer to work in Colorado
Springs, DC, or remotely.
We will review complete applications as they are received and will continue to accept and review
applications until the positions are filled. Employment could begin as early as October 15, 2022 or as
late as December 1, 2022. In your cover letter, please indicate your earliest available start date.