Situated in the heart of the U.S., our lab (helikarlab.org) within the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Department of Biochemistry is developing a multi-scale modeling and educational infrastructure with the aim of becoming a global epicenter focused on driving forward the innovation around multi-scale modeling in life sciences education and research. Our team, to date, has already built some of the most expansive multi-scale models of biological systems and currently leverages this modeling technology and approaches in both life sciences education and research.
Our current focus centers on using this research-grade technology and modeling and simulation approaches to educate students, ranging from high school students through upper level post-secondary students. Our technology and approaches are currently used in the classrooms of tens of institutions and by hundreds of research scientists.
You will have the opportunity to collaborate with and learn from a team of ~20 lab members with very diverse backgrounds, and have the opportunity to work on multiple projects in an international and a highly interdisciplinary setting with laboratory scientists, computational biologists, computer scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. We are looking to fill several roles within our education team. (Described below)
As an Educational Researcher, you will be responsible for researching the effectiveness of our existing biochemistry and / or introductory biology modeling and simulation lessons. This will include designing a research plan to fulfill the data collection and analysis requirements to answer research questions relevant to our work in using constructivist and inquiry-driven models and simulations in life sciences education. You will also be responsible for analyzing the data and / or partnering with our internal data analysis team to oversee the analysis. You will also be responsible for revising the lessons to meet the research objectives, and or revising based on insights gleaned from the research. You will be responsible for writing manuscripts and publishing the results. This position requires a deep interest in research design and technical writing.
As an Instructor Liaison, you will be responsible for identifying instructors and teachers that are good candidates to use our modeling and simulation lessons, building connections with these instructors, and developing and conducting professional development sessions to train educators on the use of our lessons. This will include becoming familiar with concepts such as systems biology, inquiry-based learning, computational modeling, using simulations to depict biological behaviors, etc., and will include attending and hosting workshops and attending and participating in conferences. You will be responsible for supporting instructors in their usage of the technology and the lessons, and providing feedback to the team for technology and/or lesson enhancements. This position requires strong communication skills and project management.
As an Educational Technologist, you will be responsible for designing new life sciences based lessons. This will include acquiring topic specific expertise (such as high school level, introductory level, or upper level undergraduate cellular respiration), using our design process to build computational modeling and simulation lessons, and designing and integrating assessments. This position requires a deep interest in biology and/or biochemistry, and experience with or interest in technology user design / user experience.
As an Assessment Technologist, you will be responsible for up-leveling our life sciences assessments. We have assessment for each of our lessons today; however, most of the assessments have not been fully validated. You will be responsible for expanding the assessment questions, in conjunction with the educational technologist and educational researcher, validating the assessments. Furthermore, you will be responsible for building new assessments, based on relevant areas of interest to our team (assessment of systems thinking, model building, model simulations, student science identity, etc.). This position requires strong experience with life sciences assessment design and expertise in sociology.
As a Data Analyst, you will be responsible for analyzing lesson data to identify, quantify, and synthesize design factors, user factors, extrinsic factors, etc. that are having an impact on the effectiveness of the lessons. You will work with student pre-/post assessment data, integrated lesson assessment data, demographic, sociographic, geographic, data. You will be responsible for performing standard educational statistical quantification of question and assessment relevancy, reliability, reproducibility. You will be responsible for developing algorithms to identify factors that are impacting the lessons that we may be unaware of, and communicating how these factors are impacting the lessons. This position requires a strong background in data management and statistics.
The University of Nebraska has an active National Science Foundation ADVANCE gender equity program, and is committed to a pluralistic campus community through affirmative action, equal opportunity, work-life balance, and dual careers.
About Lincoln, Nebraska
UNL is located in an up-and-coming, safe city of 250,000 people that has many of the cultural and entertainment benefits of a much larger community. As one of the fastest growing metro areas in the Midwest, Lincoln boasts a friendly atmosphere, abundant parkland, an extensive bike trail network, one of the nation’s lowest unemployment rates, and a low cost of living. In 2013, Lincoln was named one of the "Top Ten most Welcoming Cities in America" by Welcoming America. In 2019, Lincoln ranked #2 as a city with the best work-life balance. Click here to learn more about Lincoln and why it is a great city in which to work, live, and play.
Qualifications and Skills
Bachelors or Masters or Ph.D. in a life sciences field including, but not limited to biology, biochemistry, immunology, computational biology, bioinformatics, systems biology, or related. The rank and salary will be commensurate with the education level and experience.
Strong project management skills.
Demonstrated writing and communication skills.
Strong publication record.
Demonstrated ability to work in a diverse team, as an individual contributor as well as a strong team player.
Immediate, or upon mutual agreement.
How To Apply
If interested, please send a cover letter, CV, and contact information for three references to Dr. Tomas Helikar at firstname.lastname@example.org.