Research Assistant Positions: Cognitive Development and Learning

Research Assistant Positions: Cognitive Development and Learning (Behavioral Studies, Computational Models, & Education Research)
Elizabeth Bonawitz, Computational Cognitive Development Lab, School of Education
fall term

Research Description: My research bridges Cognitive Development, Computational Modeling, and Education to inform our understanding of human learning. Specifically, I study the structure of children's early causal beliefs, how evidence and prior beliefs interact to affect children's learning and memory, the developmental processes that influence children's belief revision and curiosity, and the role of social factors (such as learning from others) in guiding learning. My research spans infancy through adult years, with a particular focus on preschool and early elementary school years -- when children are first developing intuitive theories about the world that support common sense reasoning. Responsibilities: Research Assistants work under the mentorship of a postdoctoral researcher or other full-time research staff in our lab. Tasks differ according to the Research Assistant's primary research advisor, and may include collecting data, participant recruitment and community outreach, data processing tasks (including transcriptions and behavioral coding), analyzing data, creating study stimuli, and more. Requirements and Expectations: No previous research experience necessary. Many of our studies involve children and families, so some experience with children is preferred but not required. We seek hard-working, creative, and curious individuals who are interested in research in psychology/ cognitive science, education, or computational modelling. RAs in our lab are expected to spend approximately 9-12 hours/ week on lab tasks. Additional Information: For credit. Lab is Located at 50 Church Street. Some positions available as remote work (and some time can be remote), but other positions will involve in person testing and meetings. Our lab recently moved to Harvard from Rutgers University -- our Harvard website is still under construction, but you can learn more about our research at To Apply: Please email our Lab Manager Elise Mahaffey ( to request the application for the current hiring cycle. The application is an online form that takes about 30 minutes to complete. Note that this application will ask you to upload a resume and transcript (unofficial transcript is fine). Your application will not be reviewed if we are missing one of these items. Please direct any questions about the lab or the application process to our lab manager Elise at (posted 8/2021)