POLICY RESEARCH ANALYST

Posted on2/12/2018
Job typeFull-time
Reports toChief Information Officer through Director for Policy Research
Reports in officeMidwestern Higher Education Compact
Application due dateASAP
Job start dateASAP
CityMinneapolis
State/ProvinceMinnesota
Other Location554012555
InstitutionMidwestern Higher Education Compact
Institution descriptionThe Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC), one of four statutorily-created interstate compacts in the nation, was founded in 1991. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, MHEC operates as an agency of 12 state governments in the Midwest and is funded through state appropriations, program fees, and foundation grants. Its 60-member governing body is comprised of legislators, higher education leaders, and governors’ representatives. MHEC’s mission is to provide greater higher education opportunities and services in the Midwestern region, with the aim of furthering regional access to, research in and choice of higher education. MHEC engages in a variety of activities to fulfill its statutory charge, including the convening of policymakers and experts to discuss critical issues; the management of group purchasing programs; the promotion of program and policy innovations; and the provision of educational research and policy analysis.
MHEC is an equal opportunity employer
Job dutiesAs a member of the Data, Research and Innovation team, the Policy Research Analyst is responsible for conducting research, policy analysis, and data analysis designed to further postsecondary education as a strategic asset to ensure economic viability and growth, promote strong social and political institutions, and improve the quality of life in the MHEC states. The Policy Research Analyst produces timely memos, briefs, reports, and studies that assist in the evaluation of postsecondary performance, the analysis of state policies, and the identification of effective institutional practices. The area of specialization is open. Areas of particular interest include (a) college readiness; (b) PK-16 pathways and student success; (c) college affordability and finance; and (d) educational quality, assessment, and accountability.

Policy Research and Analysis:

Collect data by identifying and accessing relevant databases or developing and administering surveys

Analyze data to test hypotheses in relation to postsecondary policies, practices, and outcomes

Write research briefs, policy briefs, and working papers, including literature reviews, methodology, results, discussion, and policy implications

Implement the production of periodic reports that address pressing issues of interest and concern to education policymakers, practitioners, and researchers

Conduct ad hoc analyses in response to inquiries from constituents

Assist in writing research proposals and grant applications

Data Management for Research:

Develop procedures to extract, transform, and organize data from databases

Perform quality assurance analysis of data

Facilitate creation and maintenance of dashboards using data visualization software

Dissemination of Research:

Disseminate research findings through presentations and publications in approved peer-reviewed outlets

Tailor research/policy briefs and reports for broad lay readership, including commissioners, state legislators and agency staff, institutional and system leaders, and other stakeholders.

Promote MHEC research through conference presentations and other appropriate convenings

Internal Service and Collaboration:

Advise internal constituents on educational research techniques and data collection, analysis, and reporting

Provide information and expertise to advance the work of the Data, Research, and Innovation team and to aid in the attainment of organizational goals

Attend and assist with policy forums, meetings of the MHEC Commission, MHEC advisory committees, and other convening.

Salary $60,000
QualificationsEducation Requirements

Required: Master’s degree in Higher Education, Public Policy, or related field
Preferred: Ph.D. in Higher Education, Public Policy, or related field

Knowledge, Skills, and Experience

The position is available for early- and mid-career analysts who have experience conducting quantitative and qualitative policy research in higher education. Particularly strong applicants will have a record of peer-reviewed presentations and/or publications consistent with experience level. Experience working in an institutional, system, or state agency context is desirable.

The position will require the following capacities:

• Passion for improving postsecondary opportunities and outcomes in MHEC’s 12 member states
• Deep understanding of the higher education environment, issues, policies, governance, and operations at the national and state levels
• Familiarity with data sources at state, national, and non-governmental organizations, such as the U.S. Census Bureau and NCES
• Experience in survey design, administration, and psychometric assessment of survey instruments
• Proven skills in quantitative and qualitative research methods and data management
• Strong analytical skills and knowledge of descriptive and inferential statistics
• Proficiency in using SPSS, R, or Mplus, including use of syntax files
• Excellent written and oral communication skills with the ability to present findings and recommendations in a variety of formats to diverse audiences and constituent groups
• Proficiency in using Excel
• Knowledge of visual analytics software, such as PowerBI or Tableau
• Ability to work creatively and efficiently, collaboratively and independently
Salary range$60,000 - $80,000
Salary benefitsSalary is $60,000/year.

Benefit Offerings include, but is not limited to, Medical Insurance, Dental Insurance, Life Insurance, Disability Insurance, 403(b) Retirement Plan, Paid Parking or Paid Public Transportation, Flex Spending Account, Vacation/PTO.
Application procedurePlease submit a cover letter, CV, two writing samples, and three references to Aaron Horn, director for policy research, aaronh@mhec.org