Professional Research Assistant

Colorado Springs, CO
Oct 08, 2020
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
DescriptionThe UCCS School of Public Affairs (under its contract with the Colorado Department of Corrections) is recruiting for a Professional Research Assistant to participate in the design, analysis, monitoring, synthesizing, administration, writing, statistical consultation, and evaluation of research projects and products with the UCCS/SPA Research Team under its ongoing Research Services contract with the Colorado Department of Corrections.  The position will be located within the Office of Planning and Analysis (OPA) at the Colorado Department of Corrections (1250 Academy Park Loop, Colorado Springs, CO 80910).

OPA provides evaluation of programs as they relate to the management of treatment programs and the recidivism of offenders. OPA also provides data analysis to provide assessments of policy for internal management, external criminal justice management, and legislative initiatives. This 1.0 FTE research faculty position seeks an applicant with exceptional research skills, specifically in the areas of program evaluation and academic writing. Both are critical components of research, aggregating body of research into consumable components and determining the preponderance of evidence when there are conflicting results among studies. The position will also entail maintaining drug and alcohol databases and reporting duties.

Who We Are: 

The University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS) is one of four campuses in the University of Colorado system and is home to over 10,500 undergraduate and 1,900 graduate students.

Colorado Springs (pop. 400K+) is situated at the base of Pikes Peak, offers many recreational and cultural activities and was recently ranked by U.S. News & World Report  as one of the top Best Places to Live in the U.S.

Job Duties:
The professional research assistant will be responsible for producing scholarly works regarding criminal justice topics as applicable to the CDOC contract. Principal among these responsibilities are:

  • Synthesizing research from a large body of work.
  • Collecting data for program evaluations as part of the UCCS research team.
  • Coding and analyzing data for contract services.
  • Attending, and contributing to, regular research team & OPA meetings.
  • Producing (writing) quality literature reviews, legislative reports, program evaluation write-ups, and research briefs on time under the direction of the PI.
  • Reviewing scholarly literature during the research/writing process.
  • Working with members of the OPA (UCCS/CDOC) team to implement feedback and requested changes.
  • Maintaining professional knowledge by attending educational workshops; reviewing professional publications; establishing personal networks; benchmarking state-of-the-art practices; and participating in professional societies.
  • Determining critical programs and services needing routine reporting, develop methods for reporting, and notify executive leadership team when performance falls outside of the expected range.
  • Providing research design and statistical consultation in conjunction with the contract research team for CDOC
Additional duties may include:

    Serving on the external research committee at CDOC.
  • Assisting in grant writing activities for future research studies.
  • Managing an independent research project under the PI’s direction based on contract need.
  • Designing research proposals and survey instruments for contract services.
Job Competencies:

  • Excellent, advanced academic writing skills
  • Proficiency in American Psychological Association style
  • Excellent research skills (project development, literature, methodology, analysis)
  • Excellent computer skills (in particular MS Office Suite)
  • Demonstrate initiative to learn new software
  • Superior critical thinking, analytical, and problem-solving abilities
  • Excellent interpersonal/customer service skills
  • Strategic planning skills
  • Ability to ask questions, work as a lead/solo start to finish and receive constructive feedback from team membersAbility to present work at multiple levels for different stakeholders
  • Highly effective organizing, planning, and prioritizing skills
  • Keen ability to multi-task and demonstrate flexibility and adaptability
  • Strong initiative, independent work ethic, and self-motivation
  • Detail-oriented and highly accurate
  • Demonstrates leadership skills
  • Self-confidence
  • Friendly/outgoing personality
  • Tactfulness
  • Creativity
This position has been determined to be exempt from the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

What We Offer: 

University of Colorado Colorado Springs offers a comprehensive benefits package. Information on benefits programs, including eligibility, is located at:

Salary Range: Generally starting at $48,000 - $52,000, commensurate with experience

If selected for this position, the prospective employee must pass a CDOC background check and month-long (paid) training academy.  To ensure that CDOC upholds its commitment to provide a safe and secure work environment, the use of any drug classified under the Federal Controlled Substances Act, including medical or recreational marijuana, is prohibited. CDOC contract employees may be subject to random drug screenings. Per CDOC policy, the employee must live within the State of Colorado at the time of appointment and be available to work onsite at CDOC Headquarters in Colorado Springs per COVID protocols.

The University of Colorado Colorado Springs is committed to providing a safe and productive learning, living and working community. To assist in achieving this goal, we conduct background investigations for all prospective applicants being considered for employment. Background investigations include a criminal history record check, and when appropriate, a financial and/or motor vehicle history check.

UCCS is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. In compliance with applicable laws and in furtherance of its commitment to fostering an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity, the University of Colorado will consider all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, political affiliation or political philosophy in its programs or activities, including employment, admissions, and educational programs, or any other characteristic protected by law.

The Immigration Reform and Control Act requires that verification of employment eligibility be documented for all new employees by the end of the third day of work.

QualificationsMinimum Requirements:

  • Master's degree conferred at time of start in Criminology, Criminal Justice, Sociology, Psychology, Statistics, or a related social science discipline from an accredited college or university
  • Demonstrated technical or academic writing experience (e.g. named author of technical reports, academic journal articles, research brief, thesis/capstone paper, literature review, white paper, conference paper)
  • At least 12 months of experience with large datasets, data collection, and data analysis (e.g. include research experience in a dissertation, thesis, capstone research project)
  • Experience with statistical software or data management packages (e.g. SPSS, Excel, R & R-Studio)
Preferred Requirements:

  • Experience with a variety of data collection procedures (e.g. surveys, interviews, focus groups)
  • The completion of advanced graduate-level methodology and statistics course(s)
  • Prior experience assisting with criminology/criminal justice or related social science research (e.g. Psychology & Sociology) projectsExperience with Tableau Experience with SQL or AccessExpertise with either drug & alcohol, corrections, behavioral health, mental health, or criminal justice program evaluation research Experience with data visualization techniques (e.g. dashboards, networks, temporal maps, etc.)Experience researching vulnerable populations
Physical Requirements:

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to sit.  Employee is occasionally required to stand and walk. Tasks may involve looking at computer screen continuously for long periods of time. Talking and hearing within normal range. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 20 pounds.

Job Category: Faculty
Primary Location: Colorado Springs
Schedule: Full-time
Posting Date: Oct 7, 2020
Unposting Date: Ongoing