Research Associate in Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special Education

Michigan State University College of Education

Research Associate-Fixed Term

Apply now Job no: 788814
Work type: Faculty/Academic Staff
Major Administrative Unit / College: College Of Education
Department: Counseling, Educ Psych & Spec Educ 10014204
Sub Area: FAS- Fac./Acad Staff
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Education/Training, Fixed Term Academic Staff, Full Time (90-100%), Non-Union, Remote-Friendly

Position Summary

Dr. Lisa Linnenbrink-Garcia ( and Dr. Jennifer Schmidt ( in the Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special Education ( seek a post-doctoral research associate to work on a NSF-funded collaborative project called Motivation - Planning Lessons to Activate eNgagement in Science (M-PLANS, The goal of M-PLANS is to develop a professional learning model that helps in-service teachers support middle school students’ motivation and engagement in the context of science instruction aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). The PI team includes Dr. Lisa Linnenbrink-Garcia and Dr. Jennifer Schmidt from MSU; Dr. Gwen Marchand from University of Nevada, Las Vegas; and Dr. Christopher Harris from WestEd. The post-doctoral researcher will work with the full project team. The project team has developed M-PLANS collaboratively with a team of middle school science teachers and district level science coordinators in Michigan and Nevada and has collected two rounds of implementation data. The post-doctoral research associate will have the opportunity to analyze qualitative and quantitative data collected as part of the two implementation cycles, further refine the M-PLANS toolkit, disseminate results and materials, and support efforts to seek additional funding to continue the project.

Dr. Linnenbrink-Garcia and Dr. Schmidt are also part of a collaborative motivation research group known as Michigan State Motivate along with the lab of Dr. Cary Roseth. This provides a dynamic and supportive environment for post-doctoral research associates and ample opportunities for collaboration and mentorship with the PIs as well as with approximately 10 graduate students and 10 undergraduates. The post-doctoral research associate will also have the opportunity to interact with other post-doctoral fellows, graduate students, and faculty that are part of the highly-ranked Educational Psychology and Educational Technology Ph.D. program.

The position is a one-year position, with the possibility of additional years contingent upon additional funds becoming available and successful performance during the first year. The start date of the position is flexible, but we desire an individual to begin work in the summer of 2022 and prefer someone who can begin by July 1, 2022.



  • Aid in the oversight of the project at MSU, including mentoring graduate research assistants and overseeing management, processing, and analysis of qualitative and mixed-method data, including videos, interviews, and surveys.  
  • Coordinate communication with the collaborating middle school science teachers and science coordinators for Michigan
  • Conduct qualitative and mixed-method analyses on the effectiveness of M-PLANS in changing teacher behavior/beliefs and student motivation, engagement, and learning.
  • Participate in the further refinement of the M-PLANS professional learning approach based on data collected in both rounds of implementation and plans for next steps
  • Contribute to manuscript preparation, grant-related reporting activities, and other dissemination efforts.


Required Degree:  Applicants should have an earned doctoral degree in educational psychology, learning sciences, or a related field or provide evidence that the requirements for the doctoral degree will be completed prior to the start of the appointment.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or protected veteran status.

Required Degree

Doctorate -Ed psych., learning sciences, or a relat

Minimum Requirements

Experience or training in motivation research; experience conducting psychological and/or educational research in school settings; knowledge and expertise in the analysis of qualitative data and the use of SPSS and Excel.

Desired Qualifications

Background in science education; experience working with practicing K-12 teachers to develop and/or implement new curricular or pedagogical approaches; prior K-12 teaching experience, especially in science.

Required Application Materials

(1) cover letter detailing qualifications for the position, including a clear statement of research interests and description of relevant data analysis and/or management experience, (2) curriculum vitae, (3) up to two representative publications or writing samples, and (4) names and contact information for three references.

Together-we-will Statement

The university is requiring all MSU students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited exceptions. Learn more at:

Special Instructions

Please submit all application online at (position # 770675). Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Late submissions will be considered if suitable candidates are not identified by the deadline. If you have any questions about the position, please contact Lisa Linnenbrink-Garcia (

Review of Applications Begins On


Remote Work Statement

MSU strives to provide a flexible work environment and this position has been designated as remote-friendly. Remote-friendly means some or all of the duties can be performed remotely as mutually agreed upon.



Department Statement

The Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special Education (CEPSE) at Michigan State University is committed to the study of human learning and development across the life span. CEPSE faculty and students bring an important array of conceptual, technical and therapeutic perspectives to the study of learning in a wide variety of contexts.

MSU Statement

Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges.

Advertised: Jun 14, 2022 Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close: Jun 14, 2024 Eastern Daylight Time

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