Research Assistant

Brief Overview:

We are seeking a Research Assistant to be a key member of HRiA’s R&E Department and provide research-related support and assistance on a variety of projects. This is an exempt, temporary, full time position. We currently expect the position to run from January 2021 through August 2021.

Position Description:

HRiA’s Research and Evaluation (R&E) Department works with a variety of clients such as health departments, hospitals, schools, foundations, and community organizations to provide valid, reliable data for developing, implementing, and improving health and social programs and initiatives across the United States. These services help guide each step of program and policy planning by assessing community strengths and needs, determining potential key partners, understanding issues salient to target audiences, identifying challenges, and evaluating progress and impact. Services include, but are not limited to, survey development and administration, interview and focus group moderation, statistical data analysis, report writing, and translation of research findings into actionable program planning steps.

Be part of this exciting organization that works with communities in the Boston area, New England, and across the country to identify and address health issues in innovative ways.

The Research Assistant will be a key member of HRiA’s R&E Department and will provide research-related support and assistance on a variety of projects. While the R&E Department conducts assessments and evaluations using both quantitative and qualitative methods, the Research Assistant position is quantitatively focused.  The majority of work will involve identification and review of secondary data, the development and programming of surveys in online survey administration tools (e.g., Qualtrics), data cleaning, data management, and basic data analysis (e.g., frequencies, descriptive statistics), as well as  developing data visualizations  such as tables, charts and graphs for use in presentations and reports.

The Research Assistant will be involved in community health assessments and evaluations which aim to guide the development and implementation of health interventions. The R&E Department conducts numerous projects with multiple staff, and the Research Assistant will provide research and data management support to many projects at one time.

The Research Assistant will be supervised by a Director-level staff member, but will work closely with all members of the R&E Department.

Duties and Responsibilities:

While this position will be involved in a variety of tasks, primary duties will include:

Primary Quantitative Data Collection, Management, and Analysis (30%)

  • Assisting in developing survey instruments for telephone, online, or in-person administration for assessment and evaluation projects
  • Programming online surveys into an online system such as Qualtrics
  • Cleaning data, recoding and collapsing variables, and conducting overall data management of quantitative data in SPSS for a variety of evaluation projects
  • Coordinating data collection including providing logistical support for in-person intercept surveys and managing administration of online surveys
  • Conducting basic quantitative data analysis (frequencies, means, bivariate analyses such as chi-square and T-tests)

Secondary Data Compilation, Review, and Presentation (60%)

  • Identifying secondary data sources on key social, economic, and health indicators for specific geographic areas as part of community health assessment studies
  • Compiling and managing aggregate data in Excel and SPSS
  • Developing clear data visualizations (e.g., creating graphs and tables in Excel, formatting graphs and narrative in MS Word) of community health indicator data
  • Creating draft PowerPoint presentations of research findings

Other R&E Support (10%)

  • Assisting the R&E team with report development including interpreting results, writing draft narrative, and editing reports
  • Conducting draft literature reviews and environmental scans (including searching academic databases and online directories, reading and synthesizing published studies and organizational reports)
  • Providing logistical and organizational support for research projects (e.g., logistics for organizing focus groups, note-taking during focus groups, etc.)
  • Completing research-related administrative tasks when needed (e.g., formatting reports and proposals, copying and packaging surveys for administration)
  • Attending project meetings, as appropriate, and performing other related duties
  • Pending public health guidance, participating in some domestic travel (1 to 2 weeklong trips per year) to assist in data collection for specific projects (e.g., note-taking during focus groups, survey administration)

Candidate Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree, preferably in a social science such as sociology, psychology or other relevant field such as public health or education, with an emphasis on quantitative methods
  • 1-3 years relevant experience, preferably research related to public health, education, or the social sciences
  • Experience with fundamental techniques in data cleaning, management, and analysis, including experience in using statistical software such as SPSS, Stata, or SAS
  • Experience and/or interest in data visualization
  • Detail-oriented
  • Ability to prioritize and coordinate multiple projects simultaneously
  • Enthusiastic and hard-working; willing to be involved in all aspects of R&E projects
  • Strong writing and analytical skills
  • Knowledge of Microsoft software, specifically MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Demonstrated commitment to working with diverse staff
  • Demonstrated commitment to working on health and racial equity
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills and can take personal initiative and exercise independent judgment
  • Calm in a fast-paced, busy environment
  • Able to work independently and as a part of a team
  • Flexibility and a sense of humor
  • A valid driver’s license a plus

This description is intended to indicate the kinds of work duties that will be required in this position.  It is not intended to limit, or in any way modify, the rights of any supervisor to assign, direct, and contract work of staff under his/her supervision.  The use of a particular illustration describing duties shall not be held to exclude other duties, not mentioned, that are of a similar level or difficulty.

HRiA staff have been working remotely since March 2020 and it is anticipated that staff will not return to the office setting until summer or fall of 2021. This position will be a full-time remote position.  Staff do not need to be living in the Greater Boston Area.

How to Apply:

Diversity in organizational practices is a core value of HRiA resulting in culturally competent services, materials, resources, and programs.  Our hiring and business practices appreciate the strengths offered through different backgrounds.

HRiA offers an attractive benefits package, including medical, dental and life insurance, retirement plan, tax-deferred annuity, and generous vacation.

To apply, submit your cover letter and resume online.



* NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE, if you have a question please click the button below*