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CASTL Early Childhood Research Scientist

$65,000 – $75,000 yearly

University of Virginia

Last Updated: 10/14/21

Job Description

Early Childhood Research Scientist
Posting Description

The School of Education and Human Development at the University of Virginia seeks an Early Childhood Research Scientist at the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning (CASTL). Working with the Preschool Development Grant Birth-5 (PDG B-5) and the Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Program (VKRP), we are looking for applicants with an analytic focus to leverage and disseminate data related to early childhood education access, quality, equity, and school readiness skills. With direction from and working closely with the Principal Investigators the incumbent will conduct literature reviews, conduct statistical analyses, and disseminate research through presentations and written reports and manuscripts geared toward academic and non-academic audiences to advance a translational research agenda. This position will assist in analysis and reporting needs as well as using data for systems improvements to help our teams offer high-quality and equitable birth-to-five experiences for children across Virginia. This position is available remotely.

This Research Scientist will work collaboratively with and contribute to both the PDG B-5 and the VKRP project team. The PDG B-5 project is a state-level effort aimed at improving quality and access for Virginia’s youngest learners. A large part of this PDG B-5 work at UVA is the design and implementation of the LinkB5 data portal, which links to communities of early childhood care and education providers, and feeds the broader project goals to analyze and share these data with various stakeholders.

VKRP is a partnership between the University of Virginia, the Virginia Department of Education, and school divisions across the Commonwealth. VKRP partners with the Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS) to provide a comprehensive picture of students’ skills at the beginning and end of both pre-kindergarten and kindergarten. VKRP uses a web-based assessment and reporting system, which provides critical data about young children’s school readiness skills in the areas of literacy, math, social skills, and self-regulation.

The primary focus of this position is to effectively manage, analyze, and report on research and policy questions by leveraging large datasets that spans early childhood settings and include data on children’s school readiness skills in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten. This analysis and reporting will include knowledge of the latest ECE research, which includes an equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility-informed lens.

Both project teams currently focus on collecting and storing large datasets, and the incumbent will work with the Principal Investigators to analyze data; to write reports, manuscripts, and other products; and to disseminate findings.

The ideal candidate will be a highly-motivated, efficient, individual with a history of excellent work ethic, attention to detail, high levels of organization, ability to juggle multiple deadlines, and work both independently and collaboratively. In addition, the candidate will find motivation in our shared mission of improving early childcare and education for all children, especially those in historically marginalized and underserved communities.


The incumbent will be responsible for the following activities:

  • contribute to a large portfolio of early childhood education research projects conducted in partnerships with state policy partners
  • create structures and procedures for data cleaning; lead analyses; produce policy-relevant reports; produce presentations; co-author manuscripts for peer-reviewed publications; and disseminate findings for diverse audiences including VDOE, school divisions, schools/program, and research audiences (e.g., peer reviewed manuscripts, briefs)
  • collaborate within and across research projects, giving and receiving feedback on processes and products to produce high quality reports and publications
  • check-in weekly with the PIs to discuss progress and research findings and products

In addition to the above job responsibilities, other duties may be assigned.

Compensation: $65,000-$75,000 commensurate with experience and technical expertise, plus generous UVA benefits.

Minimum Requirements

Education: Ph.D. or terminal degree. ABD may be accepted.
Experience: None
Licensure: None

Application Instructions: Please apply through Workday by searching for "Early Childhood Research Scientist" and complete an application online. Applications must include:

  • your CV/resume,
  • a cover letter and ,
  • a 500 word or less statement speaking to how you address diversity, equity, and inclusion in your work

All documents can be loaded into the resume submission field, multiple documents can be submitted into this one field. Internal applicants must apply through their UVA Workday profile.

For questions about the position please contact the search committee chairperson, Jessica Whittaker, Research Associate Professor of Education. For questions about and assistance with the application process, please contact Margaret Weeks, Academic Recruiter.

This is a restricted position and continuation is dependent upon the availability of funding and satisfactory performance. Before a formal offer of employment is extended, the selected candidate will undergo a background check per university policy. This position is available start immediately with remote work possible.

Physical Demands

This is primarily a sedentary job involving extensive use of desktop computers.
The job does occasionally require traveling some distance to attend meetings, and programs.

In alignment with President Ryan’s UVA’s strategic plan, CASTL is committed to:

  • Recruiting talented and diverse doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, faculty and staff.
  • Recruitment and retention of a diverse workforce and providing an inclusive and supportive environment in which staff and faculty are recognized as integral to the success of our work.
  • Promoting a culture of integrity, mutual respect, excellence, collaboration and innovation

Company Details

Charlottesville, Virginia, United States