E-TRIALS Post-Doc/Research Scientist

Thanks to several new funding sources from the Institute of Education Sciences, National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Education, the E-TRIALS Project (https://www.etrialstestbed.org/) at WPI is able to fund a full-time post-doctoral position. The position will support and advance research across dozens of funded projects with Dr. Neil Heffernan (https://www.neilheffernan.net/). 

In addition to research, the position will be expected to actively learn and assist in grant writing. Because WPI's policy restricts postdocs from serving as Co-PIs, Dr. Heffernan hires postdocs with the "Research Scientist" title so he can list these individuals as Co-PIs for NSF proposals. This experience will give you a competitive advantage on the job market; the last three postdocs in this role had one or more funded NSF proposals on their CV when they moved on from WPI.

The initial appointment is for one year, renewable based on mutual interest and continued funding. If you have questions, please send them and your CV and cover letter to akao@wpi.edu. Formal applications must be submitted via WPI and will be reviewed on a rolling basis until filled. 

The E-TRIALS Project:  E-TRIALS (Ed-Tech Research Infrastructure To Advance Learning Science) is a joint project between the Worcester Polytechnic Institute and The ASSISTments Foundation (TAF). E-TRIALS leverages ASSISTments, a free online math platform, to support researchers creating randomized controlled trials to strengthen the science of learning. New infrastructure (i.e., software features), funded by IES, NSF, the U.S. DOE, and various philanthropy, is also being developed to reduce the cost of- and increase the volume of studies conducted by educational researchers using ASSISTments. 

This role will also work in close collaboration with The ASSISTments Foundation (TAF) a non-profit with a staff dedicated to improving student learning through ASSISTments, a responsive online learning platform that is teacher-paced and evidence-based. Co-founded by Neil & Cristina Heffernan, ASSISTments experienced tremendous growth in 2020 and is now used by more than 20,000 teachers and their students. It is a unique platform that supports teachers and students while also supporting researchers who seek to understand pedagogy and learning. The system is one of few available K-12 math tools proven effective through rigorous randomized controlled research.  Professor Heffernan at WPI has several grants that involve him overseeing research and AI work that happens inside of the ASSISTments product, and as such, TAF does the software engineering work to allow those projects to happen. 

Are you looking for a Postdoctoral Fellowship? Applicants for this position must have a Ph.D. by the start of the position in education, psychology, computer science, data science or a related field. Similar to the role of post-doc, the initial appointment is for one year, renewable based on mutual interest and continued funding. However, this role enables junior scientists to serve as PI or Co-PIs on NSF projects, thereby enabling young scholars to quickly build their CV with an impressive list of funding and projects related to education and technology. 

The primary responsibilities of this role will include the following: