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A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position.


The University of Michigan, School of Nursing (UMSN), Department of Systems, Population, and Leadership is seeking two Research Assistants (RAs) who will assist the Principal Investigator (PI) in the implementation of research project goals. The project focuses on describing how communication technologies facilitate or hinder communication between nurses and physicians. The RAs will be trained in observing clinical staff, and then sent to a medical-surgical unit at four separate hospitals to learn about communication patterns there. This will consist of observations, shadowing, and focus groups. Afterwards, RAs will be asked to process and clarify the data they have collected.

CHARACTERISTIC DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES: Conduct observation, shadowing, and focus groups in a sample of 4 hospitals. Coordinate the processing and analysis of qualitative data. Organize data for the preparation of proposals for new funding of companion studies; participate in the preparation of articles for publication in scholarly peer reviewed journals; conduct secondary analysis research on comparative literature and proofread manuscripts prepared by the research team.

EDUCATIONAL VALUE: The Research Assistants will gain experience in ethnographic field work, developing their observational, data analysis, and interpersonal relations skills. They will coordinate and lead focus groups, requiring effective time management. They will be responsible for the accurate and timely reporting of data.

Required Qualifications*

NECESSARY QUALIFICATIONS: Education and Experience: Graduate degree (completed or in-progress) in Nursing, Medicine, Public Health or other related field is required. One (1) or more years of providing patient care in an inpatient setting is required.

Attributes: Candidate must have the flexibility to be able to travel for two week periods; RAs will stay at a hotel near the site location. The timing of these four periods will be determined by the research team’s agreements with the sites to be observed. Candidate must have excellent oral and written communication skills, attention to detail, strong interpersonal skills, and organizational skills. Candidate must be able to work in shifts of 4-8 hours at a time, for several days in a row at possibly different times of day. He/she must also create and compile detailed notes of each shift afterwards. Demonstrated ability to work well under time constraints and meet deadlines. Ability to serve diverse populations.  A high degree of initiative and resourcefulness. Demonstrated ability to multi-task and work independently with minimal supervision with diverse teams of people in a diplomatic, collaborative and effective manner. Excellent computer skills, including expert knowledge of Microsoft Office products including Word, and Excel (4 years or more experience), Access and PowerPoint.

PREFFERED QUALIFICATIONS: Proficiency with NVivo coding software and Mendeley citation software (one or more years of experience). One or more years of conducting qualitative research. Experience leading large group meetings.

Work Schedule

Estimated number of hours per week working:  40 for 4 two week periods

Additional Information

$24 per hour.

Background Screening

The University of Michigan conducts background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer and may use a third party administrator to conduct background checks. Background checks will be performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days. This job may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.