Staff Learning Scientist (ELA)

Apply now »

Date: May 10, 2024

Location: US

Company: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Job Title: Staff Learning Scientist (ELA)

Location: Remote


Who We Are


NWEA® is a division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt that supports students and educators through research, assessment solutions, policy and advocacy services, professional learning and school improvement services that fight for equity, drive classroom impact and push for systemic change in our educational communities. For nearly 50 years, NWEA has developed innovative pre-K–12 assessments, including their flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™ and their reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™. For more information, visit to learn more.


What you will do


The Staff Learning Scientist applies their expertise of research and experience with learning theories, learning facilitation, and learner-centered activities to the design and evaluation of theoretically coherent k-12 education products. They serve as partners to Learning Sciences & Engineering leadership and serve as leaders within teams that are responsible for the design of substantive models of learning that manifest as ontologies and knowledge graphs that underpin product development and carry out evaluation studies to understand the efficacy of such products. They must think flexibly and creatively about research applications within specific product constraints, and clearly communicate ideas and research findings to non-expert.




  • Apply educational research expertise to develop models of K-12 student learning. Lead the design, implementation, and analysis of research studies exploring K-12 ELA attributes and their relationships. Apply advanced knowledge independently in influential areas across teams and audiences. Identify areas for improvement, collaborate with the team to set goals, and take the lead in achieving these objectives".
  • Utilize expertise in quantitative and/or qualitative research methodology to lead the design and execution of research studies aimed at validating products that articulate cognitive models of student learning.
  • Work closely with other learning scientists, engineers, UX researchers, product managers, and other subject matter experts (SMEs) in the service of developing and iteratively refining products that help K-12 teachers make instructionally relevant decisions.
  • Create clear and detailed documentation of the results of their work. This documentation could be in the form of white papers, internal informational memos, technical reports, or standard operating procedures.
  • Provide leadership and mentorship to junior colleagues in the service of developing and iteratively refining products.

Education and Experience

  • A PhD in developmental psychology, ELA, or Reading education, curriculum and instruction, cognitive psychology, or a related field.
  • 8+ years relevant job experience, preferably designing or evaluating educational technology (experience can include a leadership role on a funded research project)
  • Achievement of national recognition in the field (e.g. widely published, serves on federal grant review boards, serves on grant advisory boards).
  • Specializes in education trends within specific grade bands (e.g., K-2, middle school) or areas of study like classroom technology or personalized learning. Has designed educational products or environments, either in research projects or commercially.
  • Practical knowledge in applying and interpreting quantitative methods in learning sciences studies, including classical statistical techniques (e.g., t-tests, regression) and hierarchical statistical methods (e.g., HLM).
  • Experienced in conducting, coding, and interpreting qualitative methods such as cognitive interviews, grounded theory, and design-based research within learning science studies.
  • Proficiency in quantitative data analysis using software like R and Stata, as well as qualitative data analysis tools such as Atlas.ti, MAXQDA, and Nvivo).
  • Has experience applying learning sciences to the design or revision of educational environments for diverse student populations and has led the use of learning sciences being incorporated into the design and/or revision of educational materials.
  • Deep knowledge of education trends in ELA, including detailed familiarity with ELA content learning standards across multiple grade bands.
  • Detailed familiarity with learning models/learning trajectories in ELA, interpreting student performance data and relate that data to learning standards and learning models/trajectories.
  • Ability to communicate effectively on how learning science frameworks impact production work or research projects.
  • Collaborates with leaders and various stakeholders to ensure effective and efficient communication channels are created and maintained across all projects.
  • Demonstrates project management skills necessary to lead and direct all LS-related aspects of multiple small-to-medium projects.
  • Exhibits management skills necessary to provide staffing input, and strategic plan information for specific projects to upper management within LSE.
  • Provides advice for, creates, and documents new and existing processes, including agile processes as appropriate, within assigned project.
  • Demonstrates imagination by looking for new ways of seeing, thinking, and working.
  • Listens, encourages, and respects differences; treats all people fairly, with honesty and transparency and encourages open communication and feedback.




  • Nimble Learning: Actively learning through experimentation when tackling new problems, using both successes and failures as learning fodder.
  • Action-oriented: Taking on new opportunities and tough challenges with a sense of urgency, high energy, and enthusiasm.
  • Courage: Stepping up to address difficult issues, saying what needs to be said.
  • Manages complexity: Making sense of complex, high quantity, and sometimes contradictory information to effectively solve problems.
  • Collaborates: Building partnerships and working collaboratively with others to meet shared objectives.

Salary range:  120k -140k


Application Deadline:

The application window for this position is anticipated to close on June 2, 2024. We encourage you to apply as soon as possible. The posting may be available past this date but is not guaranteed.



Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) is fully committed to Equal Employment Opportunity and to attracting, retaining, developing and promoting the most qualified employees without regard to race, gender, color, religion, sexual orientation, family status, marital status, pregnancy, gender identity, ethnic/national origin, ancestry, age, disability, military status, genetic predisposition, citizenship status, status as a disabled veteran, recently separated veteran, Armed Forces service medal veteran, other covered veteran, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law. We are dedicated to providing a work environment free from discrimination and harassment, and where employees are treated with respect and dignity. We actively participate in E-Verify.

Job Segment: Learning, Curriculum, Training, Education, Publishing, Human Resources

Apply now »