The University of Wisconsin-River Falls, a member of the University of Wisconsin System, is located 30 miles from the Twin Cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul in scenic west center Wisconsin.  Year round arts, cultural and recreational events are easily accessible.  UW-RF’s 6,500 undergraduate and graduate students pursue degrees in four colleges:  Arts and Sciences; Education and Professional Studies; Agriculture, Food, and Environment Science; and Business and Economics.  The University provides an excellent environment for learning, emphasizing the importance of faculty-student interaction in classrooms, laboratories, academic advising, and co-curricular activities.  A favorable student-faculty ratio affords opportunity for meaningful interchange between faculty and students.  Strong interests in teaching, research and community service are highly valued.

The Position:

The Research Specialist will work under the supervision of the Director of the Survey Research Center (SRC) and will be responsible for working with SRC clients, developing questionnaires for mail, phone, intercept, focus group and on-line surveys, developing data entry processes, coding, assisting with data collection methods, statistical analysis of data, report writing, and presentation of results.  The Research Specialist will also work collaboratively with other SRC staff and student workers and carry out other tasks as assigned by the director.

This is a full-time, academic staff position with benefits and is permanent and annually renewable based on availability of funding.  Salary will be commensurate with experience and skills.

Specific Responsibilities:

  1. Project management, including planning and scheduling projects, overseeing data collection and entry, and client communications (15%)
  2. Identify potential clients and marketing the SRC to them (10%)
  3. Work with SRC clients to refine research questions and identify/recommend methods to address the research questions. (15%)
  4. Oversee data collection, entry and verification (5%)
  5. Determine appropriate statistical approaches, perform statistical analysis and interpret the results in ways that are rigorous and understandable to SRC clients. (10%)
  6. Report writing (35%)
  7. Presentation of survey results to client groups (5%)
  8. Other tasks as assigned by the SRC director  (5%)

Qualifications (Required):

  • Social science survey experience:  Must have a minimum of two years of progressively responsible survey research experience; knowledge of online, phone, focus group, intercept and mail survey development; experience coding and cleaning survey data; and an understanding of descriptive statistics and inferential statistics and an ability to work with Excel and SPSS and Access.  Experience analyzing qualitative data is desirable.
  • Communication skills:  The successful applicant will have strong verbal and written communication skills.  The Research Specialist will be responsible for helping to market the SRC to potential clients, will work with those clients to clarify the goals of their survey, will work as part of a team to implement the survey, and will help summarize the results.  Must be able to communicate statistical results in an understandable way to a variety of audiences.  The successful applicant may be required to present the results to clients in written and/or oral forms.    Experience with website construction is desirable.
  • Educational background:  A Master’s degree or the equivalent in adult education, economics, statistics, sociology, or related field is required.   Experience working in an extension-oriented job is desirable.  

To Apply:

Online applications are required at:

Submit a resume (or curriculum vitae), letter of interest (cover letter) specifying qualifications and experience and a separate statement addressing your ability to contribute to the enhancement of student awareness and appreciation of diverse cultures(diversity statement) and the names, addresses and telephone numbers of at least three references who can specifically comment upon your statistical and/or survey ability, experience, and professional preparation (references).

Inquiries should be addressed to
Denise Parks - Department Committee Chair

The names of all nominees and applicants who have not requested confidentiality in writing, and identities of all finalists must be released upon request.

Applications will be reviewed as they are submitted.  For full consideration, submit application materials by March 8, 2013.

The University is committed to creating an educational community which enhances student awareness and appreciation of diverse ethnicities and cultures and which actively supports tolerance, civility and respect for the rights and sensibilities of each person without regard to economic status, ethnic background, political views, sexual orientation, or other personal characteristics or beliefs.  Awareness of and sensitivity to diverse ethnic and cultural heritages are especially sought in applicants.

UW - River Falls is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer subject to all state and federal regulations pertaining to non-discrimination based upon sex, sexual orientation, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, marital status, age, arrest and/or conviction record, veteran status, and membership in the national guard, state defense force, or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or the State of Wisconsin.  All persons, especially women, persons of color, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.  Employment is subject to federal laws that require verification of your identity and legal right to work in the United States as required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act.

For a copy of UW-River Falls campus safety information see or call Public Safety at (715) 425-3133 for a paper copy.  This material includes crime statistics (Annual Security Report) and information on crime prevention, sexual assault and drug/alcohol issues.