Postdoc in HS Computational Physics Education (Teacher Education)

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Applications are invited for a post-doctoral researcher for a recently funded National Science Foundation project, “Integrating Computational Science Across Michigan.” This project is supported by a collaboration that joins Michigan State University's College of Education (Prof. Niral Shah and Prof. David Stroupe) and its Department of Physics and Astronomy (Prof. Danny Caballero and Prof. Paul Irving). The successful candidate for the current position will work collaboratively with team members to design multiple professional development workshops and an on-going support system for high school physics teachers in Michigan who are interested in integrating numerical computation and modeling into their classes. In addition, the candidate will conduct research focused on two areas: 1) teachers’ instructional practices, and teacher learning as individuals and as a community of practitioners; and 2) teachers’ attention to equity-related patterns in student participation, and students’ subjective experiences related to equity and inequity in classrooms.


Responsibilities include working in coordination with education and physics faculty to:

  • Design multiple professional development opportunities for supporting teachers to integrate computation into high school physics courses,

  • Work collaboratively and constructively with in-service high school physics teachers,

  • Gather and analyze qualitative data about teacher learning in both professional development and teaching environments,

  • Interview students and teachers about patterns of participation, particularly focused on issues of equity,

  • Mentor junior researchers including graduate students and undergraduates in research on teacher education, and

  • Author articles for journals such as the Journal of Teacher Education, the Journal of the Learning Sciences, Cognition and Instruction, as well as discipline specific journals, such as the Journal of Research in Science Teaching

  • Present research results at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) and the American Educational Research Association (AERA) conferences.


The candidate will collaborate with faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and graduate students in the Michigan State’s Teacher Education program and Physics Education Research Lab (


The appointment is initially for one year, with the possibility of extension, based on performance and the availability of funding. The salary will be competitive and commensurate with experience. Appointment is contingent upon successfully completing a full background check.


Candidates are expected to hold a Ph.D. in Education, STEM Education, or Teacher Education. Candidates holding a Ph.D. in physics with a dissertation emphasizing education research are also qualified. A successful candidate will demonstrate:

  • Prior professional development experience, which may include leading or supporting in-service or pre-service teachers, teaching assistants, and/or learning assistants,

  • A qualitative research background in some area (e.g., ethnography, case studies) using well-established qualitative methods (e.g., semi-structured interviews, video analysis).

  • Work organizing a large team around some project (teaching, research, or service).


An exceptional candidate will will demonstrate one or more of the following:

  • K12 teaching experience in STEM,

  • Prior experience designing professional development,

  • Coordinating data collection across multiple sites including managing video data,

  • Supervising junior collaborators on education research,

  • Working on a multi/interdisciplinary team,

  • A history of successful publications, and/or

  • An interest in issues surrounding (in)equity in STEM education.


Applicants should submit a CV, a statement of research interests, and a statement of educational philosophy and experiences to (posting number 467633). In addition, applicants should arrange for three (3) letters of recommendation to be submitted to the same posting.


Review of applications will begin on Oct 15, 2017 and will continue until the position has been filled. Start date is negotiable with a preference toward candidates that are available in early 2018. Questions regarding the position may be directed to either Prof. Niral Shah ( or Prof. David Stroupe (, research advisors for this project.


MSU is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. MSU is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity. The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans, and persons with disabilities.