Research Assistant, Psychology, Smith College

Smith College seeks a Research Assistant to prepare testing materials and conduct experiments on language acquisition in children in the refinement of a novel assessment test for 2-3 year olds in English. Responsible for assisting in stimulus design, recruiting children and schools in accord with appropriate human subjects procedures, communicating with parents and teachers, and traveling to test in nursery schools, Head Starts, and day care centers. Maintain and manage records and consent forms and ensure data is accurately recorded and secured. Responsible for making contacts with likely testing sites in schools and daycares in a wide radius of Northampton, establishing and maintaining contacts and correspondence with principals, teachers and parents.

Research involves coordination of three different sites: University of Delaware, Temple University, and Smith College, requiring regular email and phone communication among the PIs and RAs. This is a full-time, 1 year grant-funded position with the possibility of renewal.


Data Collection: Conduct studies at Smith College and other area preschools possibly within a 50 mile radius.  Negotiate testing times with the schools as well as testing children.

Data Management: Transcribe and code videotapes of children. Manage scoresheets, consent forms, and computer data Enter data into Excel and Filemaker Pro databases, conduct statistical tests using SPSS software, and create summaries of data sets in graphic and table form. Correspond and share data across research sites, set up conference calls, prepare talks and posters.

Laboratory Management: Manage the IRB status of experimental studies, supervise and coordinate undergraduate research assistants. Organize, store, and maintain testing materials, videotapes, supplies and equipment (e.g., cameras, testing laptops).


Education/Experience: Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Education or Linguistics, with training in language acquisition and developmental psychology in particular, rigorous experimental design training and statistics, and hands-on experience with preschool children. Must hold a valid driver’s license, have own transportation and be willing to travel to preschool sites. Must pass CORI (criminal background checks) and fingerprinting mandated by schools.

 Skills: Strong organizational, managerial and interpersonal skills needed.

Review of application will begin immediately.  To be considered for this position, apply on-line at

Smith College is an EO/AA/Vet/Disability Employer



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