If you're passionate about building a better future for individuals,
communities, and our country—and you're committed to working hard to play your
part in building that future—consider WGU as the next step in your career.
Driven by a mission to expand access to higher education through online,
competency-based degree programs, WGU is also committed to being a great place
to work for a diverse workforce of student-focused professionals. The
university has pioneered a new way to learn in the 21st century, one that has
received praise from academic, industry, government, and media leaders.
Whatever your role, working for WGU gives you a part to play in helping
students graduate, creating a better tomorrow for themselves and their
Job Profile Summary:
The Senior Research Scientist plays a critical role in WGU's culture of data
driven continuous improvement and progress towards personalizing the
experience for each student to optimize their outcomes. The Senior Research
Scientist will help WGU achieve our equitable access and attainment goals and
improve outcomes underrepresented populations by facilitating a deepening
understanding of drivers that influence outcomes and the impact different
experiences have on individual learners. Research projects may cover faculty
interventions, curriculum, policies or other student experiences.
The Senior Research Scientist is expected to coordinate efforts among multiple
research projects to ensure effective execution of the full life cycle of each
study, including conceptualization of ideas, research design, primary data
collection, accessing databases to obtain the data, data wrangling, performing
the most appropriate quantitative and qualitative analysis and communicating
the results through reports and presentations for internal and external
audiences. The successful candidate is an effective research scientist,
writer, and research project manager with a passion for helping to close the
achievement gap. An ideal candidate is also a continuous learner, working to
improve their scientific tool kit to have a transformative impact on WGU and
Essential Functions and Responsibilities:
Plans and executes research projects through design, data collection,
analysis, and dissemination.
Helps clients and research analysts determine appropriate research methods
including implementations studies, qualitative research, secondary data-
analysis, quasi-experimental studies, and randomized controlled trials.
Coordinates schedules and resources across multiple projects and teams.
Employs project management strategies and systems (such as Gannt
visualizations and SmartSheets) to plan, track, and report on a portfolio
of research and data visualization projects.
Develops process improvement strategies and solutions to increase
efficiency and effectiveness of the research team.
Produces high-quality, client facing reports, infographics, and
Represents WGU by presenting at relevant conferences, authoring
manuscripts, and producing other scholarly contributions.
Develops and maintains a collaborative relationship with all appropriate
internal and external stakeholders.
Performs other related duties as assigned.
Knowledge, Skill and Abilities:
Deep knowledge of a field such as learning science, behavioral science,
behavioral economics, education psychology, or related field.
Deep knowledge of WGU's educational model and instructional strategies.
Expert ability to independently define and conduct original scientific
Deep experience with rimary research methods.
Proven ability to lead research projects including resource, schedule
management, compliance and reporting.
Excellent written, oral, presentation, and interpersonal skills.
Exceptional ability to communicate research results and key ideas to lay
and scholarly audiences.
The ability to be a subject matter expert to provide thought leadership in
Thrives by working collaboratively and creatively in a fast-paced
Strong attention to detail and exemplifies pride and ownership over the
quality of our learning experience.
Ability to foster strong relationships within the team and external
Organizational or Student Impact:
Follows technical/ business processes; helps support change when
Executes complex, specialized technical projects/assignments.
Responsible for major or many components in the area of expertise.
Limit errors to prevent impact to client operations, costs, or schedules.
Problem Solving & Decision Making:
Individual meets department and personal goals with little direction/
Leads key technical projects, programs and may facilitate leadership and
development of technical teams.
Drives project methods, techniques, and procedures.
Communication & Influence:
Communicates with parties within and outside of the university (e.g.,
customers, vendors, etc.)
Works to influence parties within and outside of the job function at an
operational level regarding policies, procedures, and practices.
Leadership & Talent Management:
Responsible for providing guidance, coaching, and training to other
employees within the technical area.
Responsible for managing significant/complex technical projects at this
level, involving delegation of work and review of work products.
Subject matter expert in the area of responsibility or has extensive
knowledge of several technical areas.
Typically requires a technical university degree or equivalent experience.
5 years of prior relevant experience.
Advanced degrees (Master's or PhD) may be required for certain
disciplines and reduce the experience requirement by 2-4 years.
Department Specific Minimum Qualifications:
Master's degree in related field
5+ years leading research initiatives in learning science, behavioral
economics, education psychology or related field
PhD in related field
Strong consideration given to candidates sharing a body of large-scale
As an equal opportunity employer, WGU recognizes that our strength lies in our
people. We are committed to diversity.