Senior Research Analyst, Applied Research and Program Evaluation Unit(ARPE)

Apply now Job no: 495538
Position type: Staff Full Time
Campus: UMass President's Office
Department: IGS-Research and Evaluation
Categories: Donahue Institute
Advertised: Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close: Eastern Daylight Time

Primary Work Location:

100 Venture Way, Suite 5, Hadley, MA or 333 South Street, Shrewsbury, MA

Normal Work Schedule:

Standard full-time work schedule consisting of five, eight-hour days and 40 hours each week. Work performed in addition to regular work hours may be necessary, and may require a change in availability at specific times, to accommodate for variations in work demands.

Job Summary:

The Applied Research and Program Evaluation (ARPE) group of the University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute (UMDI) conducts social science research projects in direct response to specific client needs. All members of ARPE are expected to develop high quality work products consistent with the professional standards of UMDI; develop strong, collaborative relationships with clients, while maintaining appropriate objectivity; and reflect a positive image of UMDI and the University in all aspects of their work. Members of ARPE are committed to clear and respectful written and verbal communication, accountability, teamwork, demonstrating initiative, being organized in their approach to work, and problem solving.

Senior Research Analysts assist with all aspects of project implementation and are routinely responsible for coordinating day-to-day activities related to data collection, data analysis, and reporting of findings. In addition, Senior Research Analysts may lead the implementation of specific project components and/or have primary responsibility for designing data collection plans, evaluation measures, and reports of study findings. Senior Research Analysts may also routinely play a role in client management and communication. Senior Research Analysts are also expected to participate in practice development activities including internal committees, professional development and proposal writing.

Senior Research Analysts are expected to have a solid understanding of research and evaluation methodology that enables them to make substantive contributions to the discussion and development of research designs and measures, data collection plans, data analysis and reporting. Senior Research Analysts may provide direction and oversight to junior staff on their project team, and are expected to foster a collaborative approach to project implementation.

Essential Functions:

Qualified Senior Research Analyst candidates will have proven experience implementing research and evaluation projects in a professional setting, as well as maintaining positive client relationships. A Senior Research Analysts’ role may vary depending on the needs and characteristics of the project. Specific functions may include but not be limited to those listed below.

Project Implementation

  • Actively contribute to conceptualization and development of sound research plans and work plans.
  • Monitor progress relative to project work plans and timelines in collaboration with project team members.
  • Identify and review necessary background materials such as research articles, secondary data, and program information.
  • Actively contribute to the design or acquisition of appropriate data collection instruments.
  • Contribute to the development of data collection training protocols and train staff and clients as necessary.
  • Coordinate logistical support for primary data collection, including collaborating with clients to ensure timely and accurate data collection.
  • Conduct and monitor primary data collection.
  • Contribute to the development and maintenance of project databases.
  • Conduct and/or oversee data entry and quality assurance protocols.
  • Actively contribute to planning for data analysis. Conduct required analyses of quantitative and qualitative data consistent with skill set.
  • Develop clear visual data summaries such as tables and graphs.
  • Develop clear and concise descriptive summaries of data.
  • Actively contribute to synthesis of data to identify summary findings.
  • Contribute to the development of high quality project deliverables, including written analytical reports.

Client Communication

  • Support effective communication with clients.
  • Respond to client requests in a positive and proactive manner.
  • Provide ongoing project status reports and interim findings to clients as required.

Other Functions:

Qualified candidates will support business development and development of organizational infrastructure, as needed. Specific functions include but may not be limited to:

  • Business Development and Infrastructure Support
  • Provide support in the development of project proposals, scopes of work, and project renewals.
  • Develop technical abilities related to data collection and management, and share expertise with colleagues within UMDI. Participate in ARPE committees to improve work efficiency, office operations, professional development, et cetera, as requested by or following consultation with the Director.

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience):

Master’s degree in a relevant social science discipline with three years of directly relevant professional experience in applied research and program evaluation.


Doctoral degree in a relevant social science discipline with two years of directly relevant professional experience in applied research and program evaluation.

  • Examples of relevant social science disciplines include education, public health, public policy, sociology, and psychology. Relevant research experience should relate to the broad fields of education, public health, and/or human services.

Proficiency with Microsoft Office and substantive experience using data analysis software is required.

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience):

Demonstrated expertise in one or more of the following areas:

  • Advanced quantitative analysis methods such as multi-level modeling, time series analysis, item response theory analysis, propensity score matching/weighting.
  • Proficiency with research tools such as Qualtrics, Tableau, ArcGIS, or custom database applications.
  • Qualitative research methods such as in-depth interviews, and focus groups. Experience with qualitative analysis tools such as NVivo or ATLAS.ti.

Demonstrated strong written and oral communication skills as evidenced through reports, publications, conference presentations, etc.

Working Conditions:

  • Senior Research Analysts will conduct most of their work in an office-based, collegial environment where they will be expected to maintain regular communication with their supervising manager(s) and clients.  Senior Research Analysts must be able to work both independently and in a team setting, and with varying amounts of support, as their project assignments may require. Project assignments may vary and are made at the discretion of the ARPE Director.
  • Multiple hours in stationary position and using office equipment and computers. Some transporting of supplies and materials. Environment is a busy, open office area resulting in multiple interruptions and requests for assistance.
  • Senior Research Analysts must have the flexibility to travel on an as-needed basis within Massachusetts and in some instances outside of the Commonwealth to attend meetings and conduct field-based data collection.
  • The physical/mental demands and work environment factors described above are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

Additional Details:

  • This is a full time benefited position.
  • Salary range: $53,000- $63,000
  • No relocation assistance provided.
  • Any job offer within the President's Office is specifically conditioned upon the potential candidate consenting to and successfully completing a background review and credit review.
  • Potential candidates will not be contacted for interviews until after the posting closes.
  • A skills test may be required.
  • This position is funded by grants and/or contracts, and is contingent upon funding.

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The University of Massachusetts is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Title IX employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, or other protected class.