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Project Coordinator I, Developmental Social Neuroscience Lab

Apply now Job no: 526119
Work type: Faculty - Career
Location: Eugene, OR
Categories: Psychology, Neuroscience

Department: Center for Translational Neuroscience
Rank: Research Assistant
Annual Basis: 12 Month

Review of Applications Begins
March 5, 2021; position open until filled

Special Instructions to Applicants
Please submit a cover letter, CV, and three professional references via the UO Careers online portal.

Department Summary
The Center for Translational Neuroscience (CTN) is a center within the Department of Psychology whose mission is to translate knowledge from basic neuroscience and apply it to improve well-being, promote resilience, and mitigate the effects of early adverse experiences. The CTN employs successive iterations of neuroscience research, theory building, and practice to drive the scientific knowledge base forward and promote evidence-based policy.

The Psychology department, located within the College of Arts and Sciences, is one of the largest departments supporting significant instructional and research activities in a wide range of fields within the discipline. The Department enrolls about 1,900 students per term, with approximately 300 undergraduate Psychology majors and 80 doctoral students, and includes approximately 35 teaching faculty, emeriti faculty, research staff, graduate students and professional/administrative staff. For more information on the Department, visit https://psychology.uoregon.edu/. For more information on the CTN, visit http://ctn.uoregon.edu/.

The University of Oregon and the Center for Translational Neuroscience are committed to creating a more inclusive and diverse institution and seek candidates with demonstrated potential to contribute positively to its diverse community.

Position Summary
We are seeking a project coordinator to work with the Developmental Social Neuroscience (DSN) Lab headed by Dr. Jennifer Pfeifer (https://uodsnlab.com/) on an NIMH-funded prospective longitudinal study of risk for adolescent-emergent mental health problems in girls as they transition through puberty. In a community sample of 170+ girls (initial age 10-13 years), the project will assess: i) levels of adrenal and gonadal hormones associated with pubertal development, as well as anthropometric data and secondary sex characteristics; ii) brain structure, anatomical connectivity (diffusion tensor imaging), and resting-state functional connectivity; iii) brain functioning and behavior related to social processes (self-evaluation, mentalizing, and affiliation); iv) mental health symptoms (particularly of depression, anxiety, and self-harm); and v) smartphone use. These measures are collected every 18-24 months, and opportunities to participate in complementary sub-studies are also offered on a regular basis (every 6-9 months). The rich multilevel dataset will be analyzed using advanced statistical modeling techniques to describe the cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships between developmental patterns in each of these domains.

The project coordinator will be responsible for overseeing logistics such as scheduling participant interviews, preparing and amending IRB materials, and data management. The coordinator will collect data by applying the scientific method and ethical standards. The coordinator may have the opportunity to contribute to publications and present at conferences. The project coordinator trains and supervises undergraduate student researchers, junior project coordinators, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows in data collection

The project coordinator will also interact extensively with Dr. Nick Allen, Co-I on the study and director of the Affective Development and Psychopathology Team (ADAPT), and Dr. Kate Mills, Co-I on the study and director of the Developing Brains in Context Lab. You can learn more about the project from our published protocol at https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyt.2019.01018/full.

We are seeking a highly motivated individual to help with this study and contribute to the day-to-day operations of the lab. Candidates should be independent, detail-oriented workers who are quick to learn new skills and have excellent organizational and interpersonal skills. Given the scope of the project, a combination of the following qualities, skills, and interests are highly desirable.

Minimum Requirements
• Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Neuroscience, or a related discipline.
• Prior research experience, particularly collecting data with children and/or adolescents.

Professional Competencies
• Interest in social cognition, self-development, peer relationships, motivation, depression, and/or anxiety.
• Highly efficient and organized approach to work, with strong attention to detail and thoroughness.
• Ability to manage multiple tasks; exceptional time management skills.
• Excellent organizational, interpersonal, and communicative skills, including the ability to function effectively as a team member and team leader.
• Experience working in a team environment, requiring participatory decision-making and cooperative interactions among employees.
• Ability to learn quickly and work independently, with supervision as needed.
• Interest in community outreach (primarily at schools).

Preferred Qualifications
• Some experience conducting research with clinical populations, particularly any experience with
adolescent clinical populations or any experience with the Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (K-SADS); or strong desire to gain this experience in a research setting.
• Some experience with acquiring, analyzing, and interpreting MRI research (in at least one of the modalities listed above).
• Strong computer, statistical, and technical skills and/or a willingness to learn (e.g., Matlab, Python, R, SPM, FSL, AFNI, or similar platforms).
• Some experience in collecting and analyzing data relevant to pubertal development, which may include collecting biological samples for hormonal assays.


The University of Oregon is proud to offer a robust benefits package to eligible employees, including health insurance, retirement plans and paid time off. For more information about benefits, visit http://hr.uoregon.edu/careers/about-benefits.

The University of Oregon is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the ADA. The University encourages all qualified individuals to apply, and does not discriminate on the basis of any protected status, including veteran and disability status. The University is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to applicants and employees with disabilities. To request an accommodation in connection with the application process, please contact us at uocareers@uoregon.edu or 541-346-5112.

UO prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national or ethnic origin, age, religion, marital status, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression in all programs, activities and employment practices as required by Title IX, other applicable laws, and policies. Retaliation is prohibited by UO policy. Questions may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, Office of Civil Rights Compliance, or to the Office for Civil Rights. Contact information, related policies, and complaint procedures are listed on the statement of non-discrimination.

In compliance with federal law, the University of Oregon prepares an annual report on campus security and fire safety programs and services. The Annual Campus Security and Fire Safety Report is available online at http://police.uoregon.edu/annual-report.

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