Senior Research Associate- Education Research

  • Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA)
  • Portland, OR 97086, United States
Education Research

Job Description

Posting Date: 4/26/2017

Job#: 5442973

Employment Type: Full Time Regular

Category: Education Research

Job Title: Senior Research Associate- Education Research

Location: Headquarters – Oregon   

NWEA has an exciting new opening for Senior Research Associate within our Education Research group. This is a full-time position with competitive compensation; outstanding benefits package; and career growth opportunities. The position is in our downtown Portland headquarters and candidates who reside outside of the Portland metro area should be willing to relocate.

Founded by educators nearly 40 years ago, NWEA™ is a global not-for-profit educational services organization known for our flagship interim assessment, Measures of Academic Progress® (MAP®). More than 7,600 partners in U.S. schools, school districts, education agencies, and international schools trust us to offer pre-kindergarten through grade 12 assessments that accurately measure student growth and learning needs, professional development that fosters educators’ ability to accelerate student learning, and research that supports assessment validity and data interpretation. To better inform instruction and maximize every learner’s academic growth, educators currently use NWEA assessments with nearly eight million students.

Position summary

The responsibility of this position is to assist the efforts of the education research team to provide research support to the organization and its partners. The Senior Research Associate will interact closely with the team members and NWEA partners to facilitate the completion of projects.

This position will be based in NWEA’s Portland headquarters.


• Query large research datasets for appropriate data.
• Develop and validate complex data sets.
• Use, maintain, and document data sources used for research projects.
• Combine NWEA data and data from other sources for research projects.
• Perform, document, and write-up analysis on complex data sets using a variety of statistical tools.
• Perform quality assurance and data cleaning procedures required by research projects.
• Prepare technical and non-technical information and graphics for reports and presentations.
• Acquire data for projects from NWEA partners and other sources.
• Assist in writing reports for refereed publications, white papers, and NWEA partner facing documents.
• Contribute to literature reviews.
• Develop initial responses to research questions and interact with partners and staff on research questions.
• Assist in background preparation for meetings and calls involving research clients or NWEA partners.
• Provide technical support and manage the delivery of research reports developed by the Education Research Team.
• Perform other duties as assigned to ensure the success of the team and the organization.

Skills and Abilities


• Proficiency with the Microsoft Office Suite.  Advanced proficiency in Excel writing and validating complex formulae, development of pivot tables, and formatting for data presentation.  Proficiency in the use of Microsoft Access.
• Proficiency with SPSS or SAS.  Demonstrated ability to master new tools quickly. 
• Ability to apply the appropriate basic statistical analyses related to educational research and testing.
• Demonstrated ability to query large databases to obtain desired data sets.
• Ability to maintain, update, and validate information in large database.
• Ability to clean and validate raw data for use in custom datasets.
• Ability to define and implement appropriate quality assurance for data extracts and analyses that are delivered to internal and external customers.
• Positive attitude, service orientation, and commitment to work as a member of a collaborative team.
• Willingness to accept coaching and direction to improve job performance.
• Excellent listening skills and a commitment to communicate clearly, completely, and in a timely manner. 
• The communication skills necessary to participate in phone calls and consultations with school system professionals.
• Ability to manage multiple tasks, prioritize, and meet deadlines.
• A commitment to pay a high-level of attention to detail and deliver accurate, high-quality results.
• Commitment to using systematic processes to assure high quality research products and a passionate commitment to detail.


• Familiarity with Tableau, R, and/or statistical tools used for hierarchical linear modeling.
• Familiarity with SQL and the ability to write or interpret SQL code.

Education and Experience

• Minimum of Masters’ degree in education, statistics, or related field required, doctoral degree desirable.  Strong coursework in measurement, statistics, and research methodologies. 
• Prior experience in education research and/or testing required. 
• Prior background in K-12 teaching, a school system’s research and evaluation department, or educational administration is a plus.


NWEA’s generous benefits package includes: 100% employer paid medical, dental and vision insurance premiums for eligible employees; company-paid public transportation, indoor bicycle racks, and free on-site parking; convenient location near public transportation near the Pearl District in downtown Portland; additional monthly compensation in the form of flex pay; and a 15% annual employer contribution toward our 403b retirement plan. In addition, NWEA’s culture promotes work-life balance. Accordingly, we offer 4 weeks’ PTO in the first year, 5 weeks’ PTO after the first-year anniversary, and 6 weeks’ PTO after the second-year anniversary and in subsequent years. Our employees also enjoy flexible work schedules.

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NWEA™ is an equal opportunity employer.  Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.  For our EEO Policy Statement, please click visit the following website:

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Education Requirements

M.B.A., Other Graduate Degree