Senior Research Scientist, Mathematics

Research United States

Job ID #1274


Senior Research Scientist, Mathematics


Who you are…

You are an experienced learning scientist with a focus on mathematics and a track record of leading research studies of formal and/or informal learning environments. You have deep knowledge of the developmental, social, cognitive perspectives of learning and a foundational understanding of psychological measurement and education policy.  Most importantly, you want to be part of an empowered team that builds research-based products that help students learn.


For this position, you will be part of a team of learning scientists, psychometricians, domain subject matter experts (SMEs), and software engineers, collaborating to design, build, and validate measurement systems that support student learning in the classroom.  Desired candidates will share many attributes with scholars in academia (self-directed, productive, communicative), but be interested in doing research that leads to the development of new products.


Finally, you will be part of a new Research & Development center within NWEA. Strong candidates will be interested in helping the team expand its reach and develop its brand. Thus, applicants who bring effective problem solving, communication, and strategic planning skillsets will be preferred. Note: This is a full-time opportunity with competitive compensation and outstanding benefits package. Candidates may work remotely from their home office anywhere in the United States.


Roles and responsibilities…

  • Work closely with other learning scientists, psychometricians, domain SMEs, and engineers to design, build, and test theoretically coherent systems of fine-grained mathematics attributes and their functional relationships.
  • Collaborate with other learning scientists, psychometricians, and SMEs on the articulation of learning pathways for mathematics for grades 3-8 (e.g., learning trajectories).
  • Provide guidance to inform the development of assessments in the mathematics domain, supporting stance with existing research.
  • Collaborate with psychometricians and SMEs on all aspects of instrument design (e.g., item design, test design).
  • Lead the design, implementation, and analysis of pilot studies (e.g., cognitive task analysis, cognitive labs).
  • Collaborate with psychometricians on instrument validation study designs and analysis, including sample planning, analysis, and report writing.
  • Clearly communicate about theoretical and technical issues to colleagues, clients, and other stake holder groups such as technical advisory committees and professional associations.
  • Write and edit documents that are tailored to the target audience for RFPs, technical reports, research briefs, and standard operating procedures.
  • Publish in academic journals and present at conferences, influence learning science/testing/education policy, and pursue grant funding.



  • Nimble Learning: Actively learning through experimentation when tackling new problems, using both successes and failures as learning fodder.
  • Action oriented: Taking on new opportunities and tough challenges with a sense of urgency, high energy, and enthusiasm.
  • Courage: Stepping up to address difficult issues, saying what needs to be said.
  • Manages complexity: Making sense of complex, high quantity, and sometimes contradictory information to effectively solve problems.
  • Collaborates: Building partnerships and working collaboratively with others to meet shared objectives.


  • Situational Adaptability: Adapting approach and demeanor in real time to match the shifting demands of different situations
  • Communicates Effectively: Developing and delivering multi-mode communications that convey a clear understanding of the unique needs of different audiences.
  • ​​​​​​ Resourcefulness: Securing and deploying resources effectively and efficiently.


Education and experience…

  • A Ph.D. in developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, mathematics education, or related field is required.
  • Experience working on a team to develop scientific products over a sustained period (or similar experience working on a team to solve complex, highly ambiguous problems).
  • Experience designing, piloting, and validating computer-based mathematics tasks and measures.
  • Preferred experience working as an educator or administrator in K-12 systems, or as a researcher working in direct collaboration with K-12 schools.
  • Knowledge of state content standards and curriculum for mathematics and how they relate to theories of mathematics learning.
  • Knowledge of and experience with both quantitative and qualitative research methods


About NWEA…

NWEA® is a research-based, not-for-profit organization that supports students and educators worldwide by creating assessment solutions that precisely measure growth and proficiency—and provide timely data to help tailor instruction. For more than 40 years, NWEA has developed innovative pre-K–12 assessments, including our flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™; our progress monitoring and skills mastery tool, MAP® Skills™; and our reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™. Educators trust our professional learning offerings to accelerate student learning and our research to support assessment validity and data interpretation. More than 11 million students in 146 countries use our solutions to support their learning and growth each year.


What We Can Offer You….

At NWEA we not only offer a competitive base salary, we offer a 15% contribution of eligible employees’ base salary to a defined contribution 403(b) retirement savings plan; career development opportunities; an awesome work culture and environment; we also offer industry leading benefits and perks that are focused on supporting our employees’ holistic wellbeing. To learn more about what we can offer more, click here.




NWEA strives to make diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) practices the center of our work. Our organization’s mission, Partnering to Help All Kids Learn, is the foundation for our DEIA commitment as we work to reflect, value, and support the educators, students, colleagues, and communities we serve. We seek to empower and engage all stakeholders in the research, services, solutions, and products we provide, our organizational culture, and the partnerships we establish with schools, districts, states, and countries.


NWEA endeavors to make accessible to all users.  If you would like to contact us regarding the accessibility of our website or need assistance completing the application process, please call us at (503) 624-1951 or e-mail us at [email protected] and let us know the nature of your request, your location and your contact information. This is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the status of applications.


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 visit our website. If you’d like more information on your EEO rights under the law, please visit the EEOC website


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