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At ACT Your Work Makes a Difference

ACT team members are part of an organization dedicated to an important mission: Helping people achieve education and workplace success. 

Everything we do contributes to this mission, including team member events, professional development resources, community outreach opportunities and a market-competitive benefits program. Helping team members achieve education and workplace success of their own advances the ACT mission on a daily basis.

We are seeking a Principal Research Scientist/Solutions Designer to help us fulfill that mission. 

This position plays a key role as part of a dynamic environment within a well-established ACT business unit and will help shape, define and implement research designs and solutions. The Research team works mostly remote across the U.S.

Work location: This is a remote position. 

The Principal Research Scientist/Solution Designer will be directly responsible for partnering with other departments and areas to develop designs and solutions which serve ACT’s customers, including leading an independent research agenda and mentoring more junior staff. This position will represent Research and serve as a part of a core team that also includes product, content, operations, and engineering to develop designs and solutions focused on design standards and principles. This position will be accountable for overseeing integrated research agendas to support improvements and enhancements to existing products, the development of new approaches and models and solutions that take advantage of new and emerging research in psychometrics, validity, and efficacy as well as emergent technological advancements aligned to current and future customer needs and offerings. The Principle Research Scientist/Solution Designer will be accountable for solutions built and for transitioning solutions into operations. 

What you will be working on:

  • Develops and leads multiple solution alternatives based upon an understanding of the key requirements, fit with enterprise strategy and product road maps, alignment to guiding design principles and incorporation of new and emerging research and technology
  • Provides guidance, supports troubleshooting, leads and manages proof of concepts/pilots, defines solutions, and frameworks working with scrum and component teams through the implementation phases of the designs and enhancements
  • Establishes the definition, validation, and approval of technical and business requirements to ensure both feasibility and completeness of solutions
  • Collaborates with product and stakeholders to identify needs and use cases critical to defining solutions
  • Provides key inputs for evolution of the assigned solution area and other integrated areas
  • Provides input to other strategic research agendas outside of the Content, Operations, Research and Excellence areas
  • Serves as a mentor to other staff members through the development of communities of practice, journal clubs, and the individual level
  • Serves as a member of the strategic leadership team for Research and may include representing Research at the Senior Management Team
  • Stays abreast of trends and leads the need for and implementation of research activities and innovative solutions
  • Oversees research agendas to support improvements and enhancements of existing products, development of new approaches, model and solutions, providing advice and guidance on publications and patents; may create and lead an independent Research Agenda
  • Serves on corporate wide strategic committees as requested, for example, data governance/sharing agreements, holistic framework governance committee
  • Provides cost estimates for all solutions
  • Participates in quality reviews, inspect/adapt, and after-action reviews. Provides recommendations for improvement in processes
  • Advises VP of Research on strategic direction for the department
  • Participates in customer meetings, respond to requests, and contributes to contract negotiations to understand requirements and collaborates to develop solutions that meet their needs

This could be the job for you if you have (minimum requirements):

  • A minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible experience in research and the assessment industry, which includes demonstrated leadership in the development and publishing of high-quality, research-based assessments and learning solutions, development of active research agendas to support existing assessments learning and navigation solutions, and the development of new knowledge, methods and approaches
  • Excellent track record in the development and successful execution of research agendas to document the validity, and fairness of high-quality assessments and learning solutions
  • Proficient interpreter of research, validity, efficacy, psychometric and cognitive model definitions
  • Expert level understanding of assessment quality and demonstrated record of achievement in measuring, monitoring, continuously improving, and delivering high-quality assessments and learning solutions
  • Knowledge of psychometrics, validity, efficacy, educational and workforce research, assessment and learning trends and advancements
  • Collaboration – work effectively with individuals inside and outside the organization
  • Communication – ability to communicate effectively across all levels in the organization
  • Decision making – acts decisively with sound judgement; uses data to analyze options and form opinions
  • Innovation – develops ideas that are new, better, or unique; embraces and promotes diverse perspectives
  • Change management – ability to manage change and navigate positively in an environment experiencing change at a fast pace
  • Initiative – uses self-starter approach, ability to multi-task, proactively anticipates and acts on information and details needed, completes tasks with little to no direction
  • Self-development – remains current in area of expertise, seeks opportunities to expand and grow skills
  • Optimization – incorporates process improvements
  • Doctorate degree in psychology, education, educational measurement, psychometrics or related field, or an equivalent combination of education and experience from which comparable knowledge and abilities can be acquired

About ACT

When ACT was founded in 1959, it disrupted the assessment industry with a new approach to helping students better understand their readiness so they could take steps to improve it. By leveraging our expertise and authority in assessment and research, we will again disrupt the industry—helping more people learn, better measure their progress, and improve their navigation through life’s transitions. 

More than ever before, ACT is fulfilling its mission of helping people achieve education and workplace success. We’re doing it by pushing the boundaries of learning innovation through the work of our people, who we call team members because we’re all in this together.

We know transformation does not come without challenge. That’s why ACT invests in a variety of experiences for team members to strengthen their connections, explore ideas, learn from customers, and celebrate success.

Learn more about working at ACT at!

ACT is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. ACT values diversity in people and ideas and participates in E-verify. ACT’s online position announcements are intended only to provide general descriptions of employment opportunities; none of the information provided for any position should be interpreted as a commitment by ACT to specific terms and conditions for employment.