Classroom, Inc. Director of Research and Evaluation
National education technology nonprofit is seeking a full-time Director of Research and Evaluation to oversee research and analysis to assess the impact that Classroom, Inc. programs have on the teachers and students that use them.
What We Do
Classroom, Inc. helps middle school youth in high-poverty communities develop the literacy and life skills that are essential for a successful transition to high school and beyond. We create digital learning games set in diverse professional worlds and empower students to take charge of their learning, imagine new possibilities for themselves, and gain the skills and confidence to achieve newfound ambitions.
Why We Do It
At Classroom, Inc. we are seizing on the opportunity to engage middle school youth in deep and impactful learning experiences. With 27 years of research and impact, we know our approach works. When middle school youth are given the chance to connect the dots between school and their future, immerse themselves in career exploration, and develop critical literacy and leadership skills, they are ready to bring their full potential to any opportunity they wish to pursue.
Students participating in Read to Lead programs outpace their peers in literacy gains on standardized assessments; demonstrate growth in the 21st century skills that are critical to thrive in the modern workplace such as collaboration, critical thinking, and problem solving; and gain exposure to new career paths and opportunities.
One middle school educator, Kiwonda Riley, explained the impact for her students: “My students were asking questions about how businesses work, and what it takes to be a boss. On top of improving their reading comprehension, Read to Lead taught them the skills they need to be effective leaders. Students are challenged to make important decisions, preparing them for life outside of their classrooms.”
Director of Research and Evaluation Role
Reporting to the Executive Director, the Director of Research and Evaluation is a core strategic role and member of the leadership team at Classroom, Inc. The Director will lead our program impact studies and analysis, as well as work closely with our program and product development teams to ensure Read to Lead programs deliver clear and measurable impact for youth in forms that are easily reportable to our funders, Board members, and other stakeholders. We are looking for a leader who can assess our research program for both our current Read to Lead learning games and has experience working with product development teams to build new products that will improve 21st century skills and offer robust career exposure opportunities for youth nationwide. The activities of this role falls under three categories:
Research and Evaluation
- Ensure systems are in place to collect a range of student learning data for multiple purposes, e.g., literacy growth, personalized instruction, providing regular assessment data to teachers and students for instructional purposes, providing regular feedback to product development, and facilitating a variety of program evaluations to inform various CI constituencies.
- Design a program of research that uses qualitative and quantitative data, including learning game analytics, embedded assessments, standardized tests, surveys, interviews and other qualitative data to inform game development and to yield reliable and valid student outcomes data for a variety of audiences and purposes.
- In addition to our established model of impact in literacy, the Director of Research and Evaluation will continue the work of codifying a model of impact that demonstrates students’ growth in 21st-century life and career skills through our programs by using nationally normed surveys and other impact measures to chart student growth.
- Work with the Product and Program teams, as well as other CI staff, to plan for, collect, analyze, and interpret user experience and embedded assessment data, during product development, pilot testing, and throughout widespread usage.
- Key to this position is the ability to communicate a variety of research findings in a credible, clear and compelling way to diverse internal and external audiences. The Director works closely with the Director of Marketing & Communications and the Managing Director of Development to ensure that Classroom, Inc.’s research findings are presented in a variety of forms appropriate to various external audiences (e.g., donors, potential and current partners, the broader educational community), and collaborates closely with and communicates routinely and effectively with CI’s Executive Director and all senior colleagues.
- Working with Director of Marketing and Communications, the Director of Research and Evaluation will disseminate research results in a variety of forms appropriate to various audiences (e.g., donors, partners, the board, for marketing materials and the broader educational community), and in a variety of formats (e.g., print materials, CI’s Web site including Facebook and Twitter, refereed journal articles, and conference presentations). Help to increase CI’s visibility and build its reputation in online learning games assessment.
- The Director plays a critical advisory role on assessment issues, bringing expertise in research design, psychometric characteristics, and properties of game assessment to enable reliable and valid interpretations of student learning outcomes.
- The Director will advise CI’s Product Development team on the fidelity and efficacy of the online game’s embedded assessments, e.g., by analyzing data from the game’s adaptive learning paths.
- The Director will advise on the game’s teacher and student dashboards and back-end database that will provide the data to inform instruction, enhance student learning, improve the product, and assure quality control.
- The Director will be an in-house expert on assessing student performance and progress using key literacy and 21st century measures.
- Collect data on teacher professional development related to our programs for both formative and outcomes purposes, selecting and using strategies such as feedback after trainings or online workshops; self-reports on learning; and analytics to track use of teacher features, especially the dashboard.
- Working with VP, Product Strategy to ensure that CI’s student data systems meet appropriate federal/ local student privacy and confidentiality requirements for online programs as these requirements emerge, and that CI meets district Institutional Review Board (IRB) requirements, as needed.
- Maintain the integrity of Classroom, Inc.’s data, ensuring that systems and processes are in place to reliably report our results to our external stakeholders effectively and efficiently.
- Maintain relationships with and convene a National Advisory Council of experts in education, game design, research and evaluation to help CI to develop high-quality products and be informed by the latest research supporting effective implementation strategies.
- Be a thought leader in the educational technology and gaming communities, and share learnings from CI at conferences and convenings regularly.
- A Master’s Degree (preferably a Ph.D.) in educational research or a related field with significant experience in planning, conducting, and disseminating research related to online learning games.
- Must have experience with assessment of K-12 learning and educational games, psychometrics, and strong data analytics skills.
- Exceptional communication (oral/written) skills. Ability to interact with non-analytic audiences regarding analytic findings. Understands how to tell a story to engage an audience toward supporting a recommendation.
- High degree of independence, flexibility, initiative, and commitment. Able to balance competing priorities, motivate others, and function in an ever-evolving organization.
- Ability to lead cross-departmental teams in a highly-collaborative environment.
- Demonstrated commitment to helping close the achievement gap through the use of technology and the world of work.
- Must be used to and enjoy working in a fast-paced and team-based working environment, and be able to effectively communicate research findings to diverse audiences.
- Must have strong quantitative skills.
- Ph.D. in educational research or a related field
- Proficiency in SPSS, R, or a comparable statistical analysis tool
- Proficiency in / willingness to learn Tableau and Qualtrics
- Understanding of relational databases & SQL
- Experience with educational data mining
- Strongly prefer candidate with experience and/or interest in embedded assessment, statistics, learning games, literacy, CCSS in reading, and public school educational systems.
- Experience with adolescent students with the greatest academic needs.
Salary & Benefits:
- Salary: Commensurate with experience
- Benefits: Classroom, Inc. offers a comprehensive healthcare plan, a generous PTO package including 20 days of PTO and 10 paid holidays, and matching 403-b benefits up to 5% of total compensation (after 6 months of full-time employment).
This is a full-time position reporting to the Executive Director. At Classroom, Inc., each team member is fully committed to our mission. We are looking for talented team members who match our passion and are ready to lead and help us achieve growth and impact for youth nationwide. If you’re interested, send BOTH a cover letter and resume to email@example.com.