Data Use, Technology, and Educational Leadership

Post-doc opportunity studying data use

This is a really good opportunity to work with smart people on issues involving data use in schools. Data coaching, literacy coaching, data teams/PLCs are all en vogue, but what contributions they actually have on student learning still need to be studied.

I have appreciated Julie Marsh’s work in a variety of areas. Julie is looking for a postdoc to work with her on a study (funded by the Spencer Foundation) on efforts to build teacher capacity to use data for instructional improvement. The position would start August 1st and there may be some flexibility about location if necessary. Hit the links below or contact her if you have questions:

Job Description for Postdoctoral Research Associate 

Job Overview

The USC Rossier School of Education is seeking a candidate with a strong background in qualitative methods for a postdoctoral research fellowship. The candidate will be working closely with Dr. Julie Marsh on a research study sponsored by the Spencer Foundation that examines efforts to build teacher capacity to use data for instructional improvement. Guided by sociocultural learning theory, the study focuses on three promising capacity-building strategies—data coach, literacy coach, and data team/professional learning community (PLC)—and their contributions to teacher knowledge and practice in middle school literacy instruction. This work is not designed as a competitive test of three approaches, but instead seeks to describe the interactions within capacity-building interventions (CBIs) in multiple settings, to unpack the specific practices of CBIs, and to explore theoretically important similarities and differences among these cases and the attributes, activities, and conditions that matter for building capacity for data use. The research team has collected extensive data from surveys, observations, interviews, and documents from educators in four districts and six middle schools over the 2011-2012 school year.

The postdoctoral fellow will collaborate with Dr. Marsh and a doctoral student research assistant. He or she will participate in the final year of the research study, which will entail in-depth data analysis (including coding of transcripts, observation notes, and documents; and analyses of open- and closed-ended survey responses), literature reviews, writing, communication with the study’s advisory committee, and dissemination of findings. Dissemination efforts will include preparation of manuscripts for peer-reviewed journals and practitioner-focused publications, presentations at academic conferences, and briefings for participating districts. The postdoctoral fellow will be encouraged to co-author publications and also develop independent lines of inquiry and publications.

Applicants should have an earned doctorate in education policy and leadership, literacy education, sociology or a related field.  Other preferred skills include: excellent interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills; strong organization skills; experience using NVivo or other qualitative coding software; and ability to work collaboratively. The ideal candidate would also have knowledge of sociocultural learning theory.

The one-year position carries an annual salary of $48,000 plus full benefits and will begin August 1, 2012.

To apply please go to the following link:


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This entry was posted on June 21, 2012 by and tagged .