Research Associate

Job Description



General Description

The National Center for Child Welfare Excellence, Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College through an exciting partnership with New York City Administration for Children Services (ACS) develops, implements and evaluates transfer of learning strategies for the ACS Workforce Institute. The ACS Workforce Institute (WI) is a state-of-the-art professional development institute that strengthens skills and provides support to child welfare and juvenile justice frontline staff as they strengthen and support New York City’s families and children. The ACS Workforce Institute offers professional learning initiatives that move beyond the classroom to enhance skill development for new and seasoned ACS and provider agency staff. https://www.nycacstraining.org

Through the Silberman School of Social Work and ACS partnership, the Research Associate will join a dynamic team responsible for implementing and evaluating the Supporting Knowledge into Practice (SKIP) Initiative. The Research Associate will work closely with a team comprised of both ACS and CUNY Hunter employees as well as other leaders in the ACS Division of Policy, Planning, and Measurement to manage and support training and transfer of learning evaluation activities including instrument development, data collection, analysis, and reporting. Other evaluation activities include the development of knowledge tests, collecting learner feedback, and managing and analyzing data generated from 10,000 participants annually through multiple surveys powered by Qualtrics. Personnel, learning management, and survey data are merged to understand the relative impact of individual characteristics, organizational characteristics, and reinforcement strategies on the transfer of learning of coaching skills by Supervisors and Managers and strengths-based engagement, assessment, and interpersonal helping skills by caseworkers and case planners. Participants are followed over time to assess the degree to which competent and consistent skills are applied to improve the overall quality of services provided by the public and private child welfare system in New York City.

The Evaluation team uses the Kirkpatrick model of evaluating training efficacy to measure four levels: (1) reactions; (2) learning; (3) transfer; and (4) organizational outcomes. The evaluation team produces real-time reports and dashboards so that results will inform ongoing program development and quality improvement.



Other Duties

Position Description

The Research Associate will join a team of CUNY colleagues working collaboratively with key stakeholders in the ACS Division of Child Protection, Division of Youth and Family Justice, the Division of Policy, Planning, and Measurement, and Private Providers that implement foster care and prevention services to manage, analyze, and report on data from complex data systems.


Responsibilities of this position include:

  • Coordinating evaluation initiatives involving multiple team members and stakeholders.
  • Collaborating with Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), Instructional Designers and a team of ACS and CUNY colleagues to create, review, and pilot knowledge tests.
  • Conducting test item analyses and collaborating with SMEs to identify test item improvements.
  • Assisting in the development of instruments to measure program fidelity, simulations, etc.
  • Conducting focus groups and interviews.
  • Conducting quantitative and qualitative data analysis utilizing software such as Qualtrics, Excel, SPSS, and/or Stata.
  • Creating and maintaining dashboards in Qualtrics to inform program monitoring, performance management, and continuous quality improvement.
  • Organizing and managing data files. Maintaining detailed documentation on all data management decisions and technical work.
  • Presenting findings to diverse audiences in both oral and written formats.


Qualifications
  • MSW/MA/MPA/MS in social work, social science, public administration, data analytics, data science, data/information management, or another related field.
  • At least 2 years of experience doing data management and data analysis in an applied setting.
  • Experience in project management including assuring project milestones are met on time and collaborating with multiple stakeholders
  • Excellent time management and organizational skills.
  • An exceptional commitment to accuracy and attention to detail.
  • Ability to work on a team, as well as independently.
  • High degree of flexibility and maturity to work in an innovative, fast-paced environment, and to readily embrace change.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills and ability to effectively convey complex and data-related concepts to a variety of technical and non-technical audiences.
  • Sensitivity and experience working with diverse cultural and linguistic populations.
  • Ability to travel between program locations in NYC to observe, collect data, and support team members.
  • Competent and/or certified in Qualtrics Research Core, Employee Engagement, or Customer Engagement platforms is highly desired.
  • An understanding of human or social services, particularly the child welfare and juvenile justice systems is a plus.
  • Experience with data visualization using dashboards and developing infographics is a plus.
  • Expertise in evaluating unique learning experiences such as live simulations with actors or virtual reality experiences is a plus, but not required.

Hours: 35 hours/week (daily schedule 9am-5pm, with occasional evening hours required).


All staff working on this project in partnership with the ACS WI will be employees of the Research Foundation of the City University of New York. Employment is contingent on satisfactory clearances.


THE RESEARCH FOUNDATION OF THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY/ AFFIRMATIVE ACTION/AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT, E-VERIFY EMPLOYER.