Postdoctoral Position, Science Education Research @ University of Nebraska-Lincoln

April 5, 2021

The School of Natural Resources at University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) is searching for a full time post-doctoral position in science education research. The postdoctoral scholar will assist research for an NSF funded project Bridging Science Education and Psychology Perspectives to Support Science Literacy Theory & Instruction. The goal of the research is to understand how students’ stakeholder identity and attitudes, emotions, metacognition and personal epistemology influence learning when controversial socioscientific issues are used in the classroom. The research is in the context of a large-enrollment general science class called Science and Decision-making for a Complex World. The course is an introductory course required for all majors in the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources at UNL. The goal of the course is to foster science literacy as students practice decisions about SSIs, which involve facets of both science and society (e.g., economics, politics, and values ethics), such as water, energy resources, conservation of biodiversity, food production and health. The course uses decision-making tools based on established research in the decision-sciences and science education fields.

The successful applicant will engage in design-based research on the course resulting in understanding of student challenges in decision-making, assessment tools for evaluating the quality of student decision-making and innovative pedagogical approaches to help support students. On-going data collection includes students’ written work during decision-making about issues related to food, energy, water and conservation, student interviews and other qualitative and quantitative assessments. 

Candidates should have a PhD in education research, educational psychology research or in a science field (ecological, earth science, biological, environmental or agricultural areas are most relevant) with significant interest and experience in science education research. The ideal candidate will have experience working in science education research and have strong quantitative and qualitative research skills and experience. The candidate must have experience working with diverse groups and have strong communication (verbal and written) and excellent organizational abilities. 


The post-doctoral position is a one-year (12 month) appointment is flexible, starting as soon as May or June 2021, possibly renewable for up to 2 years, with a salary of $50,000, including benefits. Remote work may be possible, especially on a short-term basis for the first few months. To apply send a cover letter, CV and contact information for three references to Jenny Dauer ( Review of applicants will begin on April 19th. The position will remain open until filled.

UNL has a large and active discipline-based education research community with many opportunities for professional development, mentorship and collaboration. The University of Nebraska is committed to a pluralistic campus community through affirmative action, equal opportunity, work-life balance, and dual careers. Lincoln, Nebraska (pop. 265,000) is a great place to live, work, and play. It boasts a comfortable family-friendly atmosphere with a burgeoning social scene. In 2013, Lincoln topped Gallup’s annual wellbeing index, which ranks wellbeing in six categories: life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors, and access to basic necessities (, and in 2020 was ranked as the least stressful city in the U.S. (