The City University of New York (CUNY) is the nation’s leading urban public university, serving more than 500,000 students in degree, certificate, and continuing education programs at 24 colleges and institutions in New York City. Recently, CUNY’s Office of Academic Affairs (OAA) announced the formation of the Office of Applied Research, Evaluation, and Data Analytics (OAREDA), a unified research and data unit that will integrate and streamline the important work of three major research and data areas: institutional research and assessment, program evaluation and program support, and data management and analytics. The goal of OAREDA is to bring to the forefront program, policy, and institutional research, as well as data management, infrastructure, and institutional reporting as requisite functions for building a robust data culture within OAA and for solving complex problems being tackled by the University.
The Office of Research, Evaluation, and Program Support (REPS) is a comprehensive program evaluation unit situated within OAREDA. Working in many dimensions of public higher education, REPS conducts empirical research, and implementation and impact studies to provide partners with the knowledge and resources necessary to develop, improve, and ultimately reach key project goals. REPS currently provides evaluation services to over 30 educational programs administered by CUNY’s Central Office, including CUNY Start, Early College Initiative (ECI), College Now, and the ASAP-CUNY Start Foster Care Initiative. We also partner with programs and researchers at CUNY campuses, as well as external organizations and institutions in New York City.
REPS investigates issues related to higher education and educational equity among students and residents of New York City. REPS projects are organized into three focus areas: College Readiness, College Access and Success, and Career Readiness and Workforce Development. In addition, REPS has developed a body of work on topic areas that intersect with these portfolios, including developmental education, adult and continuing education, STEM pathways, vulnerable populations, and equity. REPS coordinates with OAREDA’s data unit on data collection and management protocols, business intelligence tools for reporting, and employs rigorous qualitative and quantitative research methods, and approach their work with a focus on leveraging data integration to drive program improvement and inform critical decision-making (http://www.cuny.edu/academics/evaluation.html).
?The Senior Research Analyst will work primarily on evaluation and research projects pertaining to programs and initiatives in the Office of Academic Affairs. The Senior Research Analyst will help to set the REPS research agenda, drawing on knowledge of University priorities, the policy landscape, and published research. The Senior Research Analyst will design and manage program evaluations, applying quantitative and qualitative methods to conduct formative and summative evaluations with the ultimate goal of improving program and student outcomes. The Senior Research Analyst will lead, advise, and participate on project teams; manage all phases of evaluation projects; supervise research staff; and lead evaluation report writing and dissemination.
Evaluation Management, Research & Report Writing – 30%
- Assist in setting the research agenda for the portfolio in close collaboration with the Director and key stakeholders.
- Present evaluation findings and recommendations in briefings, reports, and presentations to lay and academic stakeholder audiences, such as program staff, senior university administrators, professional associations, and other external organizations.
- Prepare manuscripts for publication in academic journals.
- Partner and work with senior leadership, program administrators, and domain experts to answer high leverage problems using imperfect data.
- Keep up to date with advances in the field of measurement and evaluation.
Data and Project Management – 40%
- Take problems defined by program partners and stakeholders, formulate an approach, collect and transform data, evaluate and iterate on the solutions.
- Implement, test, and evaluate applied research experiments and engineering solutions (e.g. product development for standardized and automated reporting) following rigorous methodology.
- Work with REPS project teams to define, scope, and manage data projects from beginning to end.
- Play a lead role in collaboration with OAREDA’s Data Unit to implement data pipelines to automate routine analyses and platforms for online/on-demand reporting.
- Oversee evaluation projects that apply qualitative and quantitative methods to assess programs and initiatives within OAA, drawing upon primary and secondary data, including administrative data housed at CUNY and the NYC Department of Education.
- Lead evaluations and perform major project tasks, including formulating research questions, writing evaluation plans and scopes of work, designing data collection and analytic plans, establishing and managing project timelines, and leading project deliverables.
- Be a thought partner with program partners to select appropriate metrics to measure progress towards program/research goals and assess impact of program.
Leadership, Administration & Development – 20%
- Contribute to office leadership, assisting with creative problem-solving, planning, exploring networking opportunities, and responding to RFPs as needed.
- Supervise research staff.
- Teach other analysts to use data well.
Other – 10%
- Engage in collaborative relationships with program partners to facilitate evaluation projects
- Prepare and provide data to CUNY stakeholders upon request.
- Other duties as assigned.
- Minimum master’s degree in education, policy, sociology, economics, psychology, or related social science discipline; doctoral degree preferred.
- At least five years’ experience working in an applied quantitative research setting, including experience managing projects.
- Strong training and skills in all phases of formative and summative program evaluation.
- Strong training and skills in advanced quantitative research methods, with expertise in at least one of the following areas: survey methods, propensity score matching, survival analysis, multi-level modeling, difference in differences, regression discontinuity, or others.
- Experience with matching data sets and manipulating large amounts of data from multiple sources; proficiency with statistical software (STATA and/or R).
- Experience with qualitative research methods, including focus groups, interviews, document analysis, or others.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills.
- Ability to work flexibly, carefully, and quickly to meet competing demands.
- Ability to take initiative, work independently as well as on teams, and promote a collaborative work environment.
- Interest in issues of access to and success in postsecondary education.
- Experience evaluating programs in higher education.
- Experience working with database tools, such as SQL and/or Oracle Discoverer.
- Experience with data visualization tools, such as Tableau.