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How to Apply

A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume or CV. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position (1/2 page maximum), outline your skills and related experience focusing on the required qualifications (1page maximum), and describe your role in the most successful or most recent research project requiring bioinformatics (1/2 page maximum).

Job Summary

An exciting opportunity has been created for an enterprising bioinformatician to join the Population, Neurodevelopment and Genetics (PNG) Program at the Survey Research Center (SRC) within the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research (ISR). The PNG Program currently consists of a growing number of scholars with funded research projects that link many different disciplinary perspectives, including developmental and clinical psychology, genetics, sociology, neuroscience, demography, public health, and education.  For more details, please see


Our team focuses on identifying biosocial processes that influence health and wellbeing across the life course. We do this using genomic data (genetic, epigenetic, gene expression, etc) collected as part of large population-based studies. The bioinformatician would help to investigate social, genetic, and epigenetic factors under the direct supervision of Drs. Erin Ware and Kelly Bakulski and will perform data management, integration, and analysis of social, health, and genetic/epigenomic measures. Further, they would conduct, assess, and synthesize analyses for applied epigenetic, social, and genetic epidemiology. Experience using –omics data in a high performance computing environment is critical. 


Evaluate and assess epigenome- and genome-wide data in large population studies of children to adolescents (Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study) and older adults (Health and Retirement Study). Analyze and interpret data analyses from quality control to regression models. This includes receiving raw (IDAT or image) files from a lab/core, developing/implementing quality control protocols, generating epigenetic or genetic measures (cell distribution estimates, epigenetic age, polygenic scores, gene-regions, etc), and conducting analyses (EWAS, GWAS, SKAT, etc)—with minimal supervision.


Develop, prepare, and implement research plans to attain specific aims of multiple research projects, including the ability to anticipate and execute next steps. Consult with consortium members and collaborators to design and evaluate research projects. Assist in supervision of students and staff, including guiding and managing tasks. Manage data acquisition and sharing tasks, such as data use agreements and interfacing with dbGaP, NIAGADS, and GEO.  


Perform code review for other analysts as part of the team, including working with other team members to fix errors and discuss differences in scientific opinion. Perform regular maintenance of datasets including merging files, restructuring and recoding variables, and checking for errors (while providing feedback to analysts during this process).  Create and maintain clear and organized workflow documentation for internal and external review. Chronicle data management and analysis steps and annotate program files to ensure full transparency and reproducibility as part of a public analysis pipeline (interface with Github, etc.) to accompany manuscripts.  


Conduct literature reviews on sociogenomic topics. Write data and analysis sections for working papers, reports, grants, and manuscripts for submission. Collaborate in the development of data presentations and posters for conferences and workshops.


Required Qualifications*

Bachelor’s degree in a recognized field of science or learning which is directly related to the duties of the position, including, but not limited to, social and behavioral sciences, biological and health sciences, or statistical and data sciences

3-5 years of directly applicable educational experience in at least two domains characteristic of the bioinformatics, including at least one biological/biomedical science and one quantitative/informatics/computing science, with aptitude for others

Experience analyzing large and complex biological and/or -omics datasets using reproducible analysis approaches (e.g. analysis pipelines)

Data management and statistical modeling programming experience in R or other –omic analysis software using command line programming such as Linux 

Highly motivated to learn and implement novel quality control and analyses techniques for genomic data

Ability to multi-task in order to facilitate several research projects at different stages of completion 

Experience with record-keeping for documentation of analyses and analysis pipelines 

Must be able to work independently and as part of a research team

Familiarity with quantitative epidemiologic or social science research methods

Desired Qualifications*

Experience with epigenetic analysis of large health or social science studies 

Programming experience with Python, R Markdown, and R shiny apps

Underfill Statement

Based on overall candidate qualifications and experience, the position may be under filled at the Associate level (as Bioinformatician I).  Requirement would be 1-3 years of experience as detailed above in required, and salary would be commensurate with the Associate level position.  

Additional Information

The Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to serve the diverse people of Michigan, to maintain the excellence of the university, and to ground our research in varied disciplines, perspectives, and ways of knowing and learning.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

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