Research Assistant I Job at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

  • Harvard University
  • Cambridge, MA

Job Description

Basic Qualifications

At least one year of experience in psychology, linguistics, cognitive science, biology, or related field is required. Relevant coursework may count toward experience.

Additional Qualifications and Skills

The candidate should have a bachelor's degree in psychology, linguistics, biology, or cognitive science and will embrace the challenges of a demanding workload involving multiple research projects. Experience with infants and toddlers desirable, because the candidate will be called upon to confidently and professionally work with families on a daily basis. Proficiency with Zoom, Word, Excel, and Google docs/calendar is necessary for day-to-day functioning of the lab, as is familiarity with online research tools (e.g. Qualtrics, Lookit) and search databases (e.g. FileMaker). Familiarity with other tools and languages like R, Python, ELAN, Praat, Habit2, Acuity, or HTML is highly desirable. Must be confident working both independently as well as with others in a high-paced research environment. Must demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and should possess excellent organizational, communication, and interpersonal skills.

Additional Information

This is a one-year, grant-funded term position with renewal dependent upon continuation of grant funding.

We regret that we will not be able to provide visa sponsorship for this position.

All formal offers will be made by FAS Human Resources.

Position Description

Responsibilities include supervising undergraduate research assistants, coordinating testing spaces and study schedules, assisting with preparation of grant applications and progress reports, maintaining the lab manual, executing specific research experiments, assisting in quality data collection and management, overseeing transcription of audio and video recordings, and ensuring compliance with all regulations regarding testing human subjects.

In addition, the candidate will act as the primary liaison between the lab and both the Psychology Business Office and the Harvard IRB as well as lab-related courses, coordinating all lab purchases, applications for human subjects research approval, and updating websites. Further, the candidate will work actively with the Open Science Framework to register studies, methodology, and data. The candidate will perform other related duties as well, depending on the needs of the lab, including interacting with families of participants, visiting students, and others.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Job Summary

The Laboratory for Developmental Studies in the Psychology Department has a position open for a full-time research assistant. Research in the lab is focused on exploring the language development of infants and children. Projects in the lab include assessing the related social and cognitive skills that accompany the word boost, examining language input, exploring infants' sound and meaning representations of words, and the relationship between language and sensory experience. The candidate will report directly to the P.I., an Associate Professor of Psychology, and will be responsible for managing and overseeing the daily activities of two lab spaces dedicated to running research studies with infants, toddlers, and children, and coordinating remote data collection.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website ( to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.
  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.
  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.
  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.
  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.
  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.
  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Work Format Details

This position is based primarily on-campus, in Massachusetts. This may include in-person during emergency situations (if applicable). Additional details will be discussed during the interview process. Certain visa types may limit work location. Individuals must meet work location sponsorship requirements prior to employment.

Job Tags

Holiday work, Full time,

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