Research Associate - Early Childhood Learning & Development, WestEd, San Francisco, CA

Posted: Thursday, December 1, 2022


As a Research Associate in Early Childhood Learning and Development (ELCD) content area, you will collaborate with the Assessment and Research Team’s (ART) data manager and Data Squad to plan and carry out applied research and evaluation activities, including recruiting research study participants, managing and reporting research data and study participation, and utilizing technology to efficiently and responsively communicate study information and results in ways that are easily accessible and interpretable for practitioners, policymakers, and researchers.

The Research Associate will advance WestEd’s commitment to equity by engaging in collaboration with other team members, research partners, and clients to collect, manage, and report data that will inform local- and state-level policy initiatives designed to support the well-being of young children birth to age 8, particularly for children of color and those from historically marginalized groups.

The ideal candidate has knowledge of data collection in early childhood settings, research and evaluation methodology, data management and analysis, and data visualization. They also have interest and experience including equity focused-perspectives in research and evaluation projects, writing for non-academic audiences, working in a collaborative team environment, and adapting in a dynamic, fast-paced environment.

Brief Position Description:

We are looking for a Research Associate who takes initiative, is highly collaborative, brings an equity lens, and has the interest and expertise to perform the following tasks:

  • Work to intentionally apply principles of cultural responsiveness and equity in research and evaluation methodologies, data collection, and reporting
  • Analyze and manage evaluation and applied research data (e.g., utilizing qualitative and/or quantitative methods, as appropriate)
  • Develop and implement research data tracking and reporting systems (e.g., study recruitment and participation; online surveys; monitoring that sampling targets and recruitment procedures are carefully followed; and ensure that research incentives are appropriately distributed)
  • Contribute to the construction, maintenance, quality assurance, and management of large datasets using SPSS, R, or another statistical software package
  • Contribute to the development and use of analytic strategies to effectively summarize data and contribute to the production of written study materials, IRB applications and protocols, summary reports, presentations for different audiences, and other deliverables such as methodology sections of users’ guides, technical manuals, and publications
  • Collaborate with project teams within WestEd and with external partners
  • Learn new quantitative software analysis packages as needed.
  • Provide instruction and oversight for data assistants
  • Build and maintain effective relationships with project team members
  • Participate in professional learning opportunities to develop knowledge, skills, and abilities in content areas relevant to work responsibilities


  • Graduate degree in education, psychology, public health, social science, or related field, with specific coursework in quantitative methods, evaluation, and/or data analysis.
  • Strong commitment to applying principles of culturally responsive evaluation and equitable evaluation in applied research and evaluation projects
  • Content or contextual knowledge of ECE practices, policies, and systems designed to support children and families, especially historically marginalized populations.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively in a team and with external clients, partners, and practitioners, including the ability to provide and accept constructive criticism.
  • Comfortability with fast-paced, quick turnaround projects and timelines
  • Strong organizational skills/attention to detail and time management, including the ability to manage multiple priorities efficiently
  • Ability to think critically about complex problems, break down those problems into manageable parts, and engage in creative problem solving to achieve practical and efficient solutions
  • Demonstrated ability to ensure that one's own and others’ work and information are complete and accurate, especially under tight timelines
  • Programming experience in at least one major statistical package (e.g., SPSS, R)
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate and work as a team player and to treat staff, partners, clients, and study participants, from a wide variety of professional, educational, and cultural backgrounds, respectfully
  • Strong written and oral communication skills to write summary reports and lead presentations
  • High level of self-motivation and ability to work independently
  • High tolerance for ambiguity, demonstrated flexibility, and a willingness to take on new responsibilities
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite, including Word, PowerPoint, and Excel, and in using web-based collaboration tools (WestEd uses Box, Smartsheet, Zoom)

*Note: Visa sponsorship is not available for this position. Successful candidates must be authorized to work in the United States.


Salary for this role is competitive, set at a WestEd level and commensurate with experience. WestEd offers a very generous benefits package including medical, dental, and vision coverage, as well as Life, AD&D and Disability insurance.  We also offer various retirement plan options and Flexible Spending Accounts for medical, childcare, and commuter expenses. WestEd offers generous paid holidays and paid time off (PTO), among other benefits.

Committed to the diversity of race, ethnicities, perspectives, and opportunities, WestEd offers a variety of social and professional learning communities, such as Employee Resources groups, the Data Intelligence, Insights, and Innovation PLC, and the WestEd Parent Community, just to name a few.  We hope you’ll consider joining us to build better schools, communities, learning pathways, and more! #LI-Remote #LI-Hybrid