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Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
Chicago, Illinois

Category: Other
Field of Interest: Education

Job Description:

Learning Labs Initiative:

CASEL’s Learning Labs is an initiative aimed at identifying, implementing, understanding, and disseminating strategies that promote high-quality, systemic SEL in diverse school communities. Through Learning Labs, CASEL staff and educators create authentic research-practice partnerships with the goal of creating equitable learning environments and equitable social, emotional, and academic outcomes for students who are furthest from receiving these learning opportunities. 

The initiative features small, intensive engagements with a subset of districts and/or states partners to co-construct and actively examine specific processes that support and reflect high-quality SEL implementation and produce desirable proximal student and adult outcomes. Through these engagements, we will learn about the most effective strategies for creating a classroom and school climate of inclusion, caring, belonging and academic excellence where students and adults are interested in and committed to healthy personal and group development and well-being.

Position Description and Responsibilities:

The Research Associate will work under the direct supervision of the Assistant Director of Research-Practice Partnerships and collaborate with the VP of Research and other research and practice team members. The person in this position will help to develop and implement various aspects of the Learning Lab work with our school, community, district and state partners.

The Research Associate-Learning Labs will support execution of our Learning Labs Initiative by:

  • Documenting the processes for developing school- and district-capacity for sustaining an effective research-practice partnership within and across settings
  • Examining the nature and deployment of implementation supports and the influences on implementation quality in classrooms, schools and districts
  • Analyzing the impacts of implementation quality on social, emotional and academic outcomes for students and practitioners
  • Assisting with the design, testing, and implementation of mixed-methods, and continuous improvement approaches, and resources in supporting our Learning Lab schools and districts with implementing systemic SEL
  • Creating survey instruments, protocols, and/or reporting structures for our school/district sites
  • Providing coaching and support to school/district staff throughout the project focusing on the use of data to inform practice and decision-making 
  • Interpreting data to provide feedback and support to schools/districts and states included in research
  • Codifying knowledge (practices & content) and support the development of dissemination products (e.g., journal articles, white papers, and infographics)
  • Performing other related duties and participate in special projects as assigned


CASEL seeks an individual who is highly motivated and committed to CASEL’s mission. The ideal candidate will have the following experience, expertise, and skills:

  • Background in education (highly preferred)
  • At least a Master’s degree in social sciences or education with quantitative and qualitative research skills, including experience designing program evaluation strategies and comfort interpreting results from statistical procedures
  • Experience with statistical analysis software such as R, or SPSS
  • Ability to critically assess challenges and identify flexible, effective solutions in ambiguous situations
  • Strong creative instincts to develop new approaches, programs or initiatives with limited guidance and historical precedent
  • Proven ability to overcome barriers and to establish and sustain constructive working relationships with fellow staff members and external partners
  • Excellent project management skills, the ability to work independently and efficiently in a fast-paced environment and manage multiple responsibilities simultaneously
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work with a range of stakeholders and across organizations

The desire to work in a highly collaborative, entrepreneurial environment where taking initiative, working well in teams of internal and external colleagues, and perseverance in the face of challenges is a must.


CASEL seeks to maintain compensation packages competitive within the nonprofit and education sectors, commensurate with experience.

To Apply

Please email a thoughtful cover letter and resume outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position and stating how you heard about this opportunity to Please include the position title in the subject line of your email message. We regret that we will not be able to respond to phone inquiries about this position.