Current Openings

Research Opportunities for Honors Students

Option to Receive Academic Credit

If offered, students have the option to receive academic credit for a research assistantship by submitting an Honors Contract by the designated academic term deadline. For more information please visit our Honors Contract FAQ page

Open Positions

Please Note: Positions are sorted by faculty home department. You do not need to have a major or minor in their department or school to apply unless specified otherwise in position description. 

 

Anthropology
Biological Sciences
Corcoran School of the Arts & Design
Digital Humanities Institute
Economics
English
Geography
German
History
International Affairs
Law
Mathematics
Organizational Sciences and Communication
Philosophy/Office of the Provost
Physics
Political Science
Prevention & Community Health
Professional Psychology Program (PsyD.)
Psychological and Brain Sciences
Publishing, College of Professional Studies  
School of Media & Public Affairs
School of Nursing
Tratchenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration
University Writing Program

RA Position Descriptions

Professor: Ronald Spector

Department: History

Research Title: The Farthest Front: Americans in the China-Burma_India Theater in World War II

Description: In 1971 Barbara W. Tuchman published Stilwell and the American Experience in China 1911-1945. The book soon became a bestseller and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Despite its title, the book’s discussion of the “American experience” was largely confined to a narrative and analysis of General Joseph Stilwell’s tour of duty as the top U.S. commander in the China Burma India Theater during World War II. Stilwell also served as Chief of Staff to Chinese premier Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek, administrator of Lend -Lease and sometimes commanded Chinese troops as well. Read full description here!


Research Assistant Duties: The student research assistant will be asked to work mainly at the Library of Congress on locating and evaluating periodical articles and oral histories relating to this project.

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Spector ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Annie Liontas

Department: English/Creative Writing

Research Title: Student Social Media Liaisons for The Gloss Interview Series & Lit Friends: A Podcast

Description: This project in Creative Writing invites student social media liaison(s) to expand and promote The Gloss Interview Series (http://www.annieliontas.com/gloss), and to assist in the development of Lit Friends, a new podcast series that focuses on friendship and literacy citizenship in the writing community.  Students conduct research, pitch series/segments, develop content for Instagram and other platforms, and engage in web/profile design.  The role encourages autonomy, creativity, and collaboration.

Research Assistant Duties: Student social media liaisons develop/post/design weekly social media content for The Gloss Interview Series.  Students with experience or expertise in design and various social media platforms are especially encouraged to apply.  Additionally, students will conduct research on the history of friendship & famous/infamous literary friendships, and during development, envision new potential segments/series for the podcast.

There is a potential to extend the position into summer 2023, particularly if students are interested in/experienced with sound editing and production.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Liontas ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Eric Schluessel

Department: History

Research Title: Xinjiang's Muslim Uprisings: A Biographical and Geographical Index

Description: The Muslim uprisings of 1864–1877 were a pivotal period in the history of the Uyghur region (Xinjiang, Chinese Central Asia). However, they remain poorly understood, and there are no reference materials to help newcomers find their way through the conflicts' complexities. This project is creating a biographical index of people who lived during and participated in the violence, as well as a geographical index of the many obscure places where, for example, battles took place. So far, about 750 unique entries have been created. There is much more information to incorporate from diverse primary sources across several languages.

Research Assistant Duties: 1. Seek out new information from English-language sources (digital and print) under Prof. Schluessel's direction. Sources include translated materials and mostly British intelligence documents. 2. Incorporate Prof. Schluessel's written notes into new biographical and geographical entries through Google Docs. You will be provided with many
examples to work from. (3. If the student has Russian or Chinese language skills, they may be asked to use documents in those languages. However, Russian or Chinese is not required.)

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Schluessel ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Paula Alonso

Department: History and International Affairs

Research Title: A Concise History of Argentina

Description: I am currently writing a book (under-contract) on the History of Argentina until the present day centered on the country's history of democracy (and its challenges).
At the moment I am working on the period between 1946 to 2000 that covers topics such as the rise of Juan Domingo and Eva Perón to power, military dictatorships (1955-1976); guerrilla organizations, State Terror, Human Rights violations and  Transition to Democracy.

Research Assistant Duties:  Bibliographical searches; summary of readings on certain topics; and literature reviews.  Most of the literature is in Spanish, so reading (not speaking) Spanish skills  are required.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 6 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Alonso ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Sharon Wolchik

Department: PSC

Research Title: Women Under Communism

Description: Updating a MS on the status of women under communism.  Help finding data and organizing materials,  Literature search and abstracting.

Research Assistant Duties: See above

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Wolchik ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Mary Beth Stein

Department: RGSLL (German)

Research Title: Before and After the Wall: East German Life Histories

Description: My research on the life history of East Germans is a book project that examines how the fall of the Wall and access to Stasi files has impacted people's understanding of their lived experience and the country in which they grew up.

Research Assistant Duties: I would like a research assistant help with library and internet research on the subject of East Germans since the fall of the Berlin Wall. The student would compile an annotated bibliography of works that have appeared since 2015 and assist in creating narrative summaries of life history narratives that I have recorded. Much of this material has been translated, but some knowledge of German is required. A second task would be to assist in organizing an exhibition about East German Literary Culture at GWU. This would involve various research-related as well as creative tasks and organizational responsibilities.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Stein ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: William Youmans

Department: SMPA

Research Title: Digitizing Arab-American TV

Description: Arab-American TV was a bilingual TV program that aired out of Los Angeles from 1980 to 2005. I am digitizing its video collection and creating a searchable catalog that lists the topics, who appears in the video and other data. The catalog and the videos will be made public for researchers, journalists and anyone else who may be interested to use. The collection is a contribution because it covers many important community events, and features newsmakers from the Arab world and beyond.

Research Assistant Duties: The research assistant watches videos and analyzes them to cull data. They complete the fields that are in the catalog. There could also be simple video editing work if the RA is interested. The ideal RA understands Arabic, modern standard. This project will also expose RAs to colloquial Arabic as well.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Youmans ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Eric Grynaviski

Department: Political Science

Research Title: English Social Networks

Description: This project examines social networks in Anglo-Saxon England. We are in the process of developing a database of all social relations in Anglo-Saxon England in order to test theories of society and state formation.  The benefit of this period is that there are accessible datasets and historical sources that summarize all social relations (real and imagined) during the period. This would be fun for students interested in political science or history, as well as students in data science or computer science.

Research Assistant Duties: The hours are variable depending on student availability. To start with, students would compare a table against an online dataset to examine it for accuracy. This table was "scrapped" from the online dataset and the webscraping process introduced errors.

For student who are familiar with historical sources, they will use prosopographical sources to draw connections between historical figures and see how professional historians do this type of work. Students in computer science or data science are likely to learn something about complex webscraping operations. The emphasis will be different depending on the type
of student.  

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Grynaviski ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: David Shambaugh

Department: Political Science/Elliott School

Research Title: The Unravelling: How America Turned Against China

Description: My book project investigates the seismic shift in American attitudes and policies towards China over the past decade--from cooperative "engagement" to one of disenchantment, antagonism, and comprehensive rivalry.  The project investigates why and how this shift has occurred in the United States, its durability, and its implications for US foreign policy, US-China relations, and world order.

Research Assistant Duties: I am looking for two RA's: one with native Chinese (PRC) language skills who is able to read, translate, and summarize Chinese media and reports (simplified characters) about the United States; and one student knowledgeable about American Politics. For the second RA, I prefer someone very knowledgeable about (a) Congressional legislation and voting concerning China, and (b) governors and state relations with China.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Shambaugh ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Alexa Alice Joubin


Department: English and Honors Program

Research Title: Shakespeare and Social Justice

Description:  This project examines how our contemporary worldwide performances of Shakespeare adapt the plays for social justice causes. Through the lenses of critical race and gender theories, this project de-colonizes the ways in which people habitually interpret Shakespeare’s plays. The chapters focus on racialized bodies, performance of gender and sexuality, disability narratives, feminist interventions, class struggle, and intersectional identities.

The recent social justice turn in the arts has given contemporary relevance and purpose to the canon. Emotional investment in a story spurs people into action, and it is validating and encouraging for audiences to see themselves represented on screen.

The project produces two books, and the research assistant will have exciting and active roles to play in producing them. The first is a collection of essays on the lesser-known play Pericles. The second is a textbook version of the comedy Much Ado About Nothing. Both books take a global approach to the plays. 

This books demonstrate the application of strategies for global inclusiveness to Shakespeare studies in the classroom and suggests that we can gain empathy by analyzing complex cultural texts such as Shakespeare in adaptation. Global perspectives can help us tackle the pervasive Whiteness of Shakespeare studies.


Research Assistant Duties

  • Assist in producing the index for one of the books.
  • Assist in obtaining, electronically or in person, research materials from the library.
  • Collate and summarize previous research on the topic.
  • Assist in ensuring the manuscript's compliance with the MLA citation style.
  • Receive substantive research related assignments
  • Collect and download the reviews
  • Prepare the index to the book
  • Training will be provided
  • Regular meeting with faculty over Zoom or in person


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 1-3 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Joubin ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Deborah Boucoyannis

Department: Political Science

Research Title: Comparison of Democracy Scores of Russia and Turkey in 1990s

Description: The task is quite simple but requires some familiarity with the major democracy scores, Polity, V-Dem, Boix and Rosato, and Svolik. You will simply record the main democracy score for Russia and Turkey between 1990 and 2000, as well as for 2010, 2015, and 2020.

Research Assistant Duties: You want to enter the democracy scores in an Excel Sheet.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 1-3 hours

Credit hour option*: 0 - No credit option

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Boucoyannis ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Daisy Le

Department: School of Nursing: Policy, Populations and Systems

Research Title: Community Health Advocacy, Resolutions, and Messaging (I-CHARM)

Description: The Innovations in Community Health Advocacy, Resolutions, and Messaging (I-CHARM) research lab, under the leadership of Dr. Le, seeks to enhance community health awareness, outreach, and advocacy efforts by (1) identifying barriers to healthcare access and (2) developing effective, sustainable, and respectful strategies for intervention development, implementation, and evaluation. Locally based in the DC area at George Washington University, the I-CHARM lab focuses on improving health behaviors and outcomes in underserved and vulnerable populations and has partnered with both government and community-based organizations to serve the Washington-Baltimore Metropolitan (WBMA) community. Recent projects have focused on HPV self-sampling acceptability, vaping cessation strategies, HBV vaccination and testing, and the efficacy of digital/mobile technology in promoting healthy behaviors.

Research Assistant Duties: The Student Research Assistant will work with a small research team and gain valuable experience in conducting community-engaged health disparities research and intervention study development, implementation, and evaluation. Under the supervision/guidance of the lab manager and/or project coordinator, the identified individual will assist with the day-to-day running of I-CHARM lab and perform research tasks such as:

  • completing literature reviews and summary reports;
  • leading participant recruitment and retention efforts;
  • assisting with data collection, coding, entry, cleaning, and mixed-methods analyses;
  • creating tables, graphs, and figures; and
  • contributing to preliminary drafts for various sections of reports, presentations, and/or manuscripts.


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Le ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: John Warren

Department: Publishing, College of Professional Studies

Research Title: Publishing Journals / Publishing at GW

Description: Publishing Journals / Publishing at GW: We have been launching a new journal as part of our Publishing program, the GW Journal of Ethics in Publishing (https://gwpress.manifoldapp.org/projects/journal-of-ethics-in-publishing). I previously worked with an undergraduate student, pursuing a sustainability minor, to investigate and identify the need for publishing services at GW. We are looking for a research assistant examine this in more depth. Under the supervision of the Program Director, and a pair of MPS in Publishing graduate students, the student will research and document what departments, schools, and institutes at GW may be interested in having the GW Publishing program assist with publishing projects, such as journals, white papers, capstone projects, open educational resources (OERs) etc. We are using a publishing platform called Manifold (https://gwpress.manifoldapp.org/) that would allow us to help departments, schools, and institutes to publish these materials online. A research assistant could help by identifying needs, whether these services would or could be charged for, funding opportunities, and so forth.

Research Assistant Duties: Research and document potential departments, schools, and institutes at GW who may be interested publishing projects, such as journals, white papers, capstone projects, open educational resources (OERs) etc., collaborating with the GW MPS in Publishing program. Identify needs, investigate whether these services would or could be charged for, identify potential funding opportunities.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 1-3 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Warren ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Harris Mylonas

Department: Political Science

Research Title: Enemies Within

Description: I am currently completing the production of an edited volume entitled Enemies Within: The Global Politics of Fifth Columns (co-edited with Scott Radnitz). For more info:
https://global.oup.com/academic/product/enemies-within-9780197627945?cc=us&lang=en&#
At this stage we need help with final proof-reading and indexing.

"The invocation of fifth columns in the political arena -- whether contrived or based on real fears -- has recurred periodically throughout history and is experiencing an upsurge in our era of democratic erosion and geopolitical uncertainty. Fifth columns accusations can have baleful effects on governance and trust, as they call into question the loyalty and belonging of the targeted populations. They can cause human rights abuses, political repression, and even ethnic cleansing. Enemies Within is the first book to systematically investigate the roots and implications of the politics of fifth columns. In this volume, a multidisciplinary group of leading scholars address several related questions: When are actors likely to employ fifth-column claims and against whom? What accounts for changes in fifth-column framing over time? How do the claims and rhetoric of governments differ from those of societal groups? How do accusations against ethnically or ideologically defined groups differ? Finally, how do actors labeled as fifth columns respond? To answer these questions, the contributors apply a common theoretical framework and work within the tradition of qualitative social science to analyze cases from three continents, oftentimes challenging conventional wisdom. Enemies Within offers a unique perspective to better understand contemporary challenges including the rise of populism and authoritarianism, the return of chauvinistic nationalism, the weakening of democratic norms, and the persecution of ethnic or religious minorities and political dissidents."

Research Assistant Duties: Proof-reading chapters, looking into the references and solving queries, help with generating the index of the book.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 1-3 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Mylonas ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Leah Brooks

Department: Trachtenberg School

Research Title: Democratic Governance and Citizen Participation: A Textual Analysis

Description: Since at least de Tocqueville, social thinkers have argued that citizen participation improves democratic governance.  In our project, we ask whether, over the last century, the federal government has increased opportunity for public participation. We define participation to include pre-policy behavior such as voting, behavior near the policy decision such as lobbying, and ex-post behavior including litigation.  We analyze the amount of participation using the text of all statutes passed in the United States since 1920. We use text analysis tools to measure the extent to which the government requires the executive branch to allow or encourage participation. We then evaluate whether this measure of participation correlates to indicia of realized participation including voting and litigation.

Research Assistant Duties:

Duties:

  • Help us software to program the conversion of PDF files into a corpus of machine-readable text to be used for further analysis
  • Skills: experience with Python, careful reading and analytical skills
  • Preferred skills: history with natural language processing techniques, PDF parsing software


Skills you may gain:

  • How to approach a research question
  • How to digitize large documents into an analyzable corpus
  • How to work in a high performance computing environment
  • Understand how federal statutes are constructed


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Brooks ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: W. Douglas Evans

Department: Public Health, Prevention and Community Health

Research Title: Digital Media for Cancer Control: Randomized Controlled Trial and Dose Response Effects

Description: There is little published data on exposure to and evaluations of large-scale, online tobacco control campaigns. The project addresses this gap. Under two specific aims, we will identify the independent effects of varying levels of digital message exposure to promote anti-tobacco attitudes, beliefs, or behaviors among youth and young adults, first through a randomized experiment online, and second through a field-based evaluation. These studies will advance the science of digital health and have wide application to future campaigns.

Research Assistant Duties: Research assistants will be expected to work with faculty and team members at GW, NYU, Truth Initiative*, and engage in the following research activities:

  • Work on literature review
  • Assist with survey development and data collection
  • Attend meetings
  • Possibly assist with data analysis and writing manuscripts for papers


* Truth Initiative is America’s largest nonprofit public health organization committed to making tobacco use and nicotine addiction a thing in the past.

This is a great opportunity for those who are interested in public health research and disease prevention through digital media that can expand your experience and career.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Evans ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Sarah Shomstein

Department: Psychological and Brain Sciences

Research Title: Attentional priorities in natural scenes

Description: The project explores neural and psychological mechanisms responsible for attentional selection (our brain's ability to figure out which information to process and which to ignore)

Research Assistant Duties:

  • Assist with day-to-day running of the cognitive neuroscience lab
  • Assist with data collection assist with data analysis


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 7-9 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Janet Steele

Department: SMPA

Research Title: Visual Misinformation in Global Perspective

Description: I am one of a team of researchers working on a project that utilizes survey experiments to test whether visual memes are more effective than text in leading users to recall factually inaccurate information, believe that information, and share it online. It also examines the role of different digital platforms (Facebook versus WhatsApp) in either helping or hindering the sharing of misinformation, as well as how particular institutional and social characteristics shape these phenomena. The project involves analysis of data from eight different countries on five continents, and I have agreed to do the analysis of Indonesia.

We have completed the initial phase, in which we identified specific memes involving misinformation that have spread on Facebook and WhatsApp, and developed survey questions and translated them into Indonesian. An international research company will conduct the survey experiment, and I will later be asked to analyze the results and write the narrative for the section on Indonesia.

Please note that applications for this position must be submitted by September 6.

Research Assistant Duties: Please note:  knowledge of Indonesian is NOT required for this project.

I need someone who can help me find photos that illustrate our 8 different issues/topics.  For each of the issues, four the images must be "high arousal," and four must be "low arousal," meaning that we will need a total of 64 images.  Although this sounds simple, it is actually quite time-consuming, as there are a number of other requirements. For each of the 8 issues we identified the images need to be:

1. Either copyright-free or published by a reputable news organization that credits the copyright owners so we can credit them again.

2. The images do not have to come from Indonesia or from Indonesian news sources, as long as they are good illustrations of the misinformation we are showing participants.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 4-6 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Ellen Yeung

Department: Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Title: Investigation of the Relationship between Substance Use and Pain

Description: Approximately 1 in 5 Americans, suffer from severe and/or persistent pain. Substance use/misuse and chronic pain frequently co-occur. Multiple studies have revealed an association between them showing the onset of substance use/misuse precedes people’s reports of chronic pain in some populations, and vice versa in other populations. You may wonder why this is the case. Do current substance users or people with a history of substance use/misuse show higher pain sensitivity? Do they report a heightened analgesic effect that in turn leads to greater likelihood of self-medication with alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, or opioids? Would chronic pain patients who rate higher on certain personality traits and/or loneliness be more at risk of substance use disorders? Do these devastating health conditions manifest similar physiological dysregulation that has been implicated in the brain reward and stress pathways? If you are interested in seeking answers to these questions, please consider joining my scientific effort to help people manage their substance use and chronic pain. I am recruiting conscientious and motivated undergraduate students to work as research assistants in my lab.

Duties: In this role, you will gain experience in recruiting and interviewing participants in the community, preparing and administering study materials, and managing electronic diary studies. Furthermore, during research assistant training, we will discuss theories of substance use disorders and chronic pain, as well as the research methodology and statistical techniques that allow us to address the research questions relevant to their co-occurrence. Together, we will review the literature, develop and organize a digital library, and code the research studies. In the future, when in person training is permitted, you will have the opportunity to get an insider's look at, and hands-on experience with, the process of assessing several physiological indices via state-of-the-art equipment and software. In short, you will gain important research skills highly valued in graduate and medical programs, while making a meaningful contribution to the accumulation of knowledge on substance use and chronic pain.

Time commitment: 6-8 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 2

Number of openings: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.


Professor: Alessandra Fenizia

Department: Economics

Title:  Preventive Care in the Times of COVID

Description: The current pandemic has reshaped our lives in ways we did not anticipate and forced us to change our routines and plans. Most commentators have focused on the devastating effects of the virus and how to tackle the pandemic effectively. Less attention has been devoted how the epidemic has shifted attention and resources away from other realms of medicine. Anecdotal evidence suggests that many patients have skipped their routine checkups and avoided visiting the hospital or their primary physician unless it was truly necessary. What is the value of preventive care? What is the impact of skipping or postponing a routine checkup? How does this translate in short-term savings and long-term costs for the healthcare system?

Duties: review of the literature on preventive care, proof editing preliminary drafts, collecting qualitative and quantitative data

Time commitment: 4-6 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 2

Number of openings: 1

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Harris Mylonas

Department: Political Science

Title: Nationalism

Description: I’m writing a chapter for an Oxford University Press Handbook on Nation- and State-Building in Modern Greece.

Duties: This project will involve reading articles and books and writing up memos summarizing findings, focusing in particular on the main institutional initiatives and events. The RA will also help with references and citations.

Time commitment: 4-6 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 2

Number of openings: 3

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Jameta Barlow

Department: University Writing Program

Title: Womanist Characterization of African American Literature for Applied Impact

Description: In this political moment, where the pandemics of anti-Black systems of oppression, science deniers and COVID-19, Womanism offers a lens in which to address this culture in crisis. Defined as “a social change perspective rooted in Black women’s and other women of color’s everyday experiences and everyday methods of problem solving in everyday spaces, extended to the problem of ending all forms of oppression for all people, restoring the balance between people and the environment/nature and reconciling human life with the spiritual dimension,” (Marparyan, 2012; Phillips, 2006) Womanism is a transdisciplinary humanistic perspective, epistemology and methodology that has been employed throughout the world to address environmental issues, sexual violence and mental health, among other social issues. This project will map seminal African American literature onto the eight modalities characterizing Womanism, in an effort to explore the utility of a humanistic intervention during this political moment.

There are eight modalities characterizing Womanism: self-care healing and wellness practices, which are designed to rectify physical, emotional, mental and spiritual practices; harmonizing and coordinating, or disposition and activity to employ differential consciousness and move between divergent logics and conceptual schemes; dialogue and the power of the word, to express and establish connection and individuality as well as tension and connection; arbitration and mediation, where conflict is transformed into peace; spiritual activities, a socio-ecological transformational activity rooted in a spiritual belief system including religious participation to transmutation practices; hospitality, the transformative power of welcome that facilitates powerful encounters; mutual aid and self-help, or everyday collective grassroots methods garnered from life experience, wisdom, self-education and democratic knowledge; and motherhood, a social change methodology and social ecology that recognizes agency and interconnectivity with others.

Womanism is both interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary in its theoretical framing, ontologies, epistemologies and methodologies. As a community psychologist and public health scientist, I engage in Womanism modalities in my work to disrupt cardiometabolic syndrome (e.g., diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension) among Black communities. Central to this work is my curriculum of “writehealing” where I use writing to address self-care, harmonizing and coordinating and mutual aid and self-help. However, a major gap in this work is a database of relevant African American literature that can be utilized for intervention. This project offers a humanistic approach for applied impact. A database that allows the user to discover African American literature based on a Womanist modality, emotions and psychological outcomes bridges multiple disciplinary gaps.

Duties:

  • Data mine, review, organize and characterize African American literature according to the Womanist modality and health behavior(s)
  • Participate in weekly project meetings
  • Contribute to online database management and manuscript development


Time commitment: 7-9 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 3

Number of openings: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  

 


Professor: Sanjay Pandey

Department: Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration

Title: Advancing anti-racism and anti-sexism through scholarship

Description: Like most RA listings, this is an unpaid assistantship. There is a need for training the next generation of scholars on anti-racism and anti-sexism. The purpose of this project is to help students develop social science research skills and to apply these skills to anti-racist and/or anti-sexist inquiry. Ideal candidates will be interested in developing a scholarly understanding, working independently, and be motivated to meet milestones as part of a structured learning experience.

Duties include:

  • Under instructor guidance come up with a work plan and revise it, as necessary
  • Implement the plan and communicate regularly (once a week or once every two weeks) with the instructor and act on the feedback
  • Keep clear and extensive documentation of steps in the research process.

Time commitment: 8-10 hours per week (average) for a semester

Credit hour option*: 3

Number of openings: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Maggie Chen

Department:  Economics/ESIA

TitleCompradors and China's Early Industrialization

Description: In this project, we seek to investigate whether and how compradors may have shaped the industrialization and economic transformation of China as both trade intermediaries and modern entrepreneurs. The historical context of the study covering the decades of China’s most drastic opening and industrial revolution offers us a unique setting for studying how intermediaries, a group that continues to exist and evolve with globalization today, may shape countries’ economic development and transformation. We will quantify the economic impact of compradors by exploring a rich array of historical micro datasets and tracking the compradors’ movements across positions and enterprises. We will perform a series of empirical analyses to examine how compradors affected the performance of their foreign employers and the establishment of new domestic entrepreneurship in industrial sectors.

Duties: data entry and construction, literature search, case study, and data analysis

Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 3

Number of openings: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.    


Professor: Harris Mylonas

Department: Political Science

Title: Greek and Cypriot Political Developments

Description: Conduct background research for the report on Greece that I contribute annually to the European Journal of Political Research.

Duties: Summarize events, find reliable sources to cite, edit text. 

Time commitment: 1-3 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 1

Number of openings: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Jozef Przytycki


Department: Mathematics

Title: Knot Theory, assisting in editing, programming,  and research

Description: Knot Theory is a discipline of modern mathematics, part of topology (geometria situs). Student(s) will assist me with editing programing and doing research in Knot Theory.

Duties: Students under my supervision will be involved in tasks as below:
1. Student would assist in preparing/editing research paper for arXiv submission (and eventual publication). Student has to learn LaTeX and how to draw figures in xfig or other similar program.

2. Many invariants of graphs and knots require pattern testing which require to wrote simple (or not that simple) programs. Also programs are needed to analyze simple algebraic structures related to knots.

Time commitment: 4-6 hours per week (average)

Number of openings: 2

Credit hour option*: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Alex Pyron

Department: Biological Science

Title: Species Delimitation in Desmognathus Salamanders

Description: The Dusky Salamanders, genus Desmognathus, are one of the most diverse and abundant animals in the eastern forests of the United States. They are classic study organisms for ecology and behavior. Despite their visibility and imperilment, we know little about their genetic diversity and evolutionary history. While there are only 21 currently named species, recent work using DNA sequencing has revealed at least 45 potential species, which would more than double the size of the group.

Duties: The research assistant will work with me to collect data and build a computational model to distinguish between cryptic species of Desmognathus salamander. Classes in ecology/evolution and experience with statistics are a plus.

Time Commitment: 1-3 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 1

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected] 

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Diego Abente Brun
Department: Elliott School of International Affairs
Title: The Foreign of Brazil: From the Discourse to the Facts

Description: This project consists of following up the foreign policy decisions and positions of the Bolsanaro government and explore the congruence/incongruence between words and deeds. Especial emphasis will be paid to relations with Argentina. It implies also to compare and contrast his government's foreign policy with that of previous governments and includes the analysis of the role of key institutions, chiefly Itamaraty, but also private actors such as business associations, the Congress, civil society organizations and the media.

Duties:

  • To identify key issue-areas. (In close consultation with the Instructor)
  • To collect data and review the literature. (Portuguese and Spanish reading language proficiency required)
  • To trace and underline the difference and similarities with previous official positions.
  • To explore the likely course of events in the future.
  • To conclude with a summary of the key findings, the risks and opportunities they offer, and policy recommendations for other foreign actors such as the United States, Europe,  and regional actores.
  • The project will be discussed with the instructor and may be adjusted based on the student's interests.


Time commitment: 4-6 hours per week (average)

Credit hour option*: 2

Submit Cover Letter/Resume to: [email protected]

*If credit is sought, all registration deadlines and requirements must be met.  


Professor: Melissa Keeley

Department: Geography

Research Title: Green Infrastructure in DC: Public perceptions of a "hot" urban climate change adaptation strategy

Description: Green Infrastructure (naturalistic, plant-based systems like street trees, rain gardens, and urban parks) provide multiple benefits in cities, for example: stormwater management, urban heat island reduction, air quality improvements, wildlife habitat, and improving the mental health of urban residents. For these reasons, cities are increasingly turning to green infrastructure as a way to address complex challenges like adapting to climate change. Dr. Keeley has developed a long-term research project examining maintenance, performance, and public perceptions of 40 bioretention systems across DC (5 in each of DC's 8 Wards). The goal of this research is to understand the performance, environmental impacts and public perceptions of this relatively novel technique as it is implemented across the city. I hope that results from this study can help improve bioretention system maintenance and design. 

Research Assistant Duties:

This project requires two types of research assistants:

1) DC-based:

  • DC-based student research assistants will become IRB certified for human research methods. Research assistants will work in groups and use DC public transportation to visit green infrastructure sites across DC. They will conduct interviews with people passing by each site. Students will gain experience interviewing, transcribing interviews, and managing and analyzing qualitative data.

2) Non-DC-based:  

  • Non-DC-based students could also participate in broader quantitative, qualitative and spatial data analysis, with specific research questions designed around their skills and interests.

Number of openings: 6

Average weekly time commitment: 7+ hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Sharon Wolchik

Department: PSC

Research Title: Corruption in high places in postcommunist Central and Eastern Europe

Description: Help finding data and organizing materials, Literature search and abstracting.

Research Assistant Duties: See above

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor Wolchik ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Cynthia McClintock

Department: Political Science

Research Title: Party Fragmentation in Latin America: What Is To Be Done?

Description: This project describes the increasing party fragmentation in Latin America and highlights its problematic effects on presidential legitimacy. In addition, the project examines a variety of reforms for the amelioration of these problems: an additional round for the presidential election if no candidate reaches 30 percent of the first-round vote and the improvement of pre-election opinion polls. The project builds on previous publications about the runoff rule in Latin America and about party weakness in Peru.

Research Assistant Duties: The construction of datasets, largely through online research, and also bibliographic reviews.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: Professor McClintock ([email protected])

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.

 

Professor: Laurie Kohn

Department: Law

Research Title: Research on Family Law, Access to Justice, and Wrongs against Women

Description: The project involves researching various questions related to family law, access to justice, and wrongs against women. Research will involve seeking academic scholarship, popular press, sociological data and scholarship, and first person narratives that will inform 4-5 page memos on research points. The memos will support several long form academic articles on how the law has rendered divorce inaccessible to those who live at or below the poverty line and how the law remains infused with moral assumptions about divorce. The work will also support longer articles on denial and sexual harassment, assault, and wrongs against women.

Research Assistant Duties: Research and drafting summaries of research. All research can be done using the library, computer databases, and google.


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Katherine Marshall Woods

Department: Professional Psychology (PsyD.)

Research Title: Psychodynamic Film and Media Set


Description: Psychodynamic Film and Media Set provides support to various projects related to film and mediaworks produced and arranged in collaboration with PsychMinded Media.  Film and other media are
examined using a psychoanalytic theoretical platform where projects serve to educate the general public regarding psychological dynamics and psychoanalytic practices to the general public to reduce mental health stigma.

Research Assistant Duties: 

Engage in a weekly meeting via Zoom to discuss:
a.  Episodic strategy for the television show Best Psychology in Film (BPIF)
b.  Develop Guest Line-Up
c.  Lines of Communication with Guests (Question Development, Theoretical Conceptualizations)
d.  Debriefing of Interview
e. Developing Social Media Content for Psychodynamic Film Media Set IG
f. Transcriptions of episodes (first 5 minutes of interview) for postings
g. Meet and make contact with guests for BPIF
h. Research and contact filmmakers
i. Capture stills of production for postings for Psychodynamic Film and Media Set and PsychMinded Media
j. Presenter line-up and contacting for Psychoanalytics Takes on Cinema (learning how to gain CE accreditation)
k. Coauthor blogs regarding episodic series and films
l. Perform literature reviews for writing projects
m. Attend film festivals (local and domestic)
n. Engage in other projects as they arise (i.e. panel discussions, script reviews, Division 39 film series Cinematic Imprints)


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option: Not available. 

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


Professor: Ilana Feldman

Department: Anthropology

Research Title: International Encounters on Palestinian Terrain

Description:  I am pursuing a multi-pronged research project that asks about the consequences of different forms of international engagement with Palestine—for Palestinians and for international organizations. The "international" means many things (law, discourse, community) and there are multiple pathways of international engagement. I am exploring this multiplicity through three organizations: the World Council of Churches, Badil (a Palestinian Rights organization), and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). It is the ICRC portion that I seek assistance with.

Research Assistant Duties:  I seek an assistant who is skilled in reading French to help me work through documents from the ICRC archives. These documents, from years 1967-75, cover the ICRC's efforts to assert the relevance and authority of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) in the management of the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The documents are mostly in French.

Given the large amount of material to sort through, I would like a brief summary/memo on each file, noting subjects discussed, parties involved, any notable comments or topics.


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Randi Kristensen

Department: University Writing Program

Research Title: Rites of Passage: A Transnational Study of Novels by Black Women Writers

Description:  I'm seeking to update a book project with published research from the last 20 years on novels by Toni Morrison, specifically Beloved; Paule Marshall, specifically The Chosen Place, the Timeless People; and Maryse Conde, specifically Heremakhonon.  The project examines representations of Maroons and marronage in these novels as historical figures and as a psycho-social process.

Research Assistant Duties:  I'm looking for a research assistant who is enthusiastic about Black women writers, and who would be interested in compiling an annotated bibliography of recent research on the novels specified above, as well as concepts such as marronage.  After discussing the project, the RA would collect the relevant research, and then sort into "must read," "maybe read," and "probably not" folders, with a guiding annotation.


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours (open to more weekly hours)

Credit hour option*: 2 credits (open to more credit hours, if average weekly time commitment is more)

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]

*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Susan Jones

Department: Law

Research Title: Economic Justice and Financial Literacy Project


Description:   Identify opportunities and innovations supporting economic justice and financial literacy for underserved, underrepresented, and underestimated U.S. communities with a focus on Washington DC and the DMV.  Assess characteristics of successful programs and opportunities to scale.  Identify and assess programs associated with community development financial institutions providing technical assistance, loans, and microloans.

Research Assistant Duties:  Data gathering and evaluation.


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Tiffany Bisbey

Department: Organizational Sciences & Communication

Research Title: Team Resilience and Adversity


Description:  The goal of this work is to better understand how teams perform in adverse and complex environments and the factors that help them bounce back from failure and setbacks. We are employing a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods in aim to develop a theory of team resilience and explore how it can be measured psychologically, behaviorally, and physiologically. Part of this project will involve observing teams in action and using real-time physiological measures (e.g., wrist-worn monitors) to uncover new ways to diagnose team functioning in adversity.

Research Assistant Duties: 

Tasks are assigned based on needs and interests:
- Searching and reviewing literature
- Coding scientific articles
- Drafting research ethic applications
- Constructing surveys, experimental design, behavioral coding
- Scientific writing


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Tiffany Bisbey

Department: Organizational Sciences & Communication

Research Title: Leadership Interventions and Psychological Safety


Description:  With this work, we attempt to advance theory to explain how psychological safety emerges from team interactions. We are conducting a systematic review of the literature on psychological safety and
communication to organize what is known and unknown in the literature and draw insight regarding theory and conceptual gaps. We are also conducting experimental research to test ideas around how communication influences felt psychological safety.

Research Assistant Duties:  

Tasks are assigned based on needs and interests:
- Searching and reviewing literature
- Coding scientific articles
- Drafting research ethic applications
- Constructing surveys, experimental design, behavioral coding
- Scientific writing


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Tiffany Bisbey

Department: Organizational Sciences & Communication

Research Title: Unheard Voice and Employee Well-Being


Description:  The overall goal of this research is to examine how worker health and well-being vary based on the degree to which leaders are receptive to employee voice. We are conducting a series of studies to
better understand the relationship between the voice process and factors such as risk-taking behaviors and employee well-being over time. We are also developing an observational measurement tool for assessing leader behavior in voice interactions and designing interventions to improve leadership.

Research Assistant Duties:  

Tasks are assigned based on needs and interests
- Searching and reviewing literature
- Coding scientific articles
- Drafting research ethic applications
- Constructing surveys, experimental design, behavioral coding
- Scientific writing


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Arie Dubnov

Department: History

Research Title: Judaism and Political Activism: The Legacy of Max Ticktin


Description:  The late Rabbi and Prof. Max Ticktin was a rare combination of a scholar and a political activist. He was a professor of Hebrew language and literature at the George Washington University and was a cornerstone of the university’s Judaic Studies Program for over 30 years. Ticktin was also involved in founding Hillel (prior to his work at GW), in the activities of the DCJCC, and was a central figure in the DC Fabrangen, an egalitarian and participatory Havurah (community) that was founded in 1971 and is still active to this day. All these made him a pillar of his community and a beloved instructor who inspired countless undergraduates and adult learners. But not less significant was his political activism: first, before joining DC, Rabbi Ticktin joined other clergy who stood up for women’s rights and helped women obtain information on abortions (a group known as the Clergy Consultation Service on Problem Pregnancies) and was arrested for his activities. Next, soon after the October 1973 War, Ticktin joined a small group of American-Jewish activists who founded "Breira: A Project of Concern in Diaspora-Israel Relations" - an organization founded calling for a two-state solution (long before it was fashionable) and who members met with leading members of the PLO. (Breira means “alternative” in Hebrew). Despite the fact it stirred a lovely controversy at the time, no historian wrote a proper study of the group Breira nor of Ticktin himself. The aim of the project is to address that gap. Significantly, Max Ticktin’s personal papers were donated by his family to GW’s Gelman Library Special Collections (Collection MS2403-UA see link) Prof. Arie Dubnov, who holds the Ticktin Chair for Israel Studies at GW, is looking for one or two Research Assistant (RAs) who will help him write an article about Ticktin’s life, learning and political activism, based on these materials.

Research Assistant Duties: 

The Research Assistant (RA) will help Prof. Dubnov conduct research on the Max Ticktin Papers in preparation for a future academic publication. The main tasks will include:
1.      Assist Prof Dubnov in creating a chronological inventory of archival documents from the Ticktin Papers at the Gelman Library special collections.
2.      Research, find, and reproduce historical newspaper articles.
3.      Working with rare materials: conduct research, identify key documents, transcribe or order digital copies from the Library, and scan printed materials (including uncatalogued materials held privately by Prof. Dubnov)
4.       Identify key individuals Ticktin was in touch with and conduct a mini research about them.
5.      Conduct interviews with family members and former colleagues.


Required skills:
•       Good oral and written communication skills.
•       Familiarity with Excel, Dropbox, and Google Drive.
•       Ability to conduct online research in Historical Newspapers and similar historicales.

Knowledge of Hebrew is preferable but not required.


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Kylie Quave

Department: Anthropology and University Writing Program

Research Title: How Anthropologists Construct Disciplinary Norms in the Introductory Course


Description:  This study documents the range of approaches to teaching archaeology and biological anthropology at different types of US universities. It is a phase of a larger project asking how the ways anthropology courses are taught may contribute to creating norms in the discipline and may contribute to inclusion and exclusion of certain kinds of students.

The study seeks submissions of syllabi from faculty at different higher education institutions for recently taught introductor courses. Those syllabi are analyzed for various attributes related to pedagogical areas of interest related to educational belonging and inclusion and related to anthropological knowledge production.

Student researchers will analyze the syllabi to gather data on  inclusion of 1) content that emphasizes "ways of knowing" the human past, 2) texts and perspectives that emphasize multivocality and marginalized perspectives, 3) classroom activities that incorporate active learning strategies, and 4) Universal Design for Learning principles. We will record assigned texts, types of assignments, and tone of language used on syllabi that relate to student-centered learning.


Research Assistant Duties:  The student will perform research tasks including: communicating with research subjects following IRB protocols, managing data entry, collecting data and coding variables for the study. The student will contribute to peer reviewed research and write research memos of findings, assist with presentations and reports, and analyze data.  Other duties may be assigned as warranted and depending on the research progress.

Student should have familiarity with anthropology, preferably archaeology and/or biological anthropology, and be comfortable with using spreadsheets.


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 1-3 hours

Credit hour option*: 1 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Xiangyun Qiu

Department: Physics


Research Title: Unraveling Virus Evolution through Monte Carlo Simulations and RNA-Protein Sequence Embeddings


Description: This project combines Monte Carlo (MC) simulations with RNA-protein sequence embeddings, derived from large language models (LLM), to dissect the intricate pathways of virus evolution.

Objective: The primary objective is to develop a novel framework for studying virus evolution dynamics in silico. By employing MC simulations, we will simulate the stochastic processes that underlie genetic mutations, recombination events, and selection pressures acting on viral genomes. This approach will allow us to gain insights into the emergent properties and adaptive strategies of viruses.

Methodology: Central to this project is the utilization of RNA-protein sequence embeddings generated by state-of-the-art large language models. These embeddings encapsulate high-dimensional representations of RNA and protein sequences, capturing their structural, functional, and evolutionary features. By integrating these embeddings with MC simulations, we aim to create an in-silico model that mimics the evolutionary dynamics of viruses.

Expected Outcomes: This interdisciplinary approach holds promise in several key areas. Firstly, it will provide a deeper understanding of some of the key factors influencing virus evolution. Additionally, the project aims to unravel the complex interplay between viral genotypes (RNA) and phenotypes (protein), uncovering insights for vaccine development and therapeutic interventions.


Research Assistant Duties: 

1. Data Collection and Preparation:
     - Retrieve and compile relevant RNA sequence data from databases and sources.
     - Perform data quality checks and preprocess the data for further analysis.

2. Embedding Generation:
     - Utilize large language models to generate RNA and protein sequence embeddings
     - Cluster embeddings and compute pairwise evolutionary distances between sequences.

3. Monte Carlo Simulations:
     - Set up and execute Monte Carlo simulations to model virus evolution dynamics.
     - Monitor and troubleshoot simulations to ensure accurate and reliable results.

4. Data Analysis and Visualization:
     - Analyze simulation outputs to extract meaningful insights regarding virus evolution.
     - Generate visualizations and plots to illustrate key findings.

5. Documentation and Reporting:
     - Maintain detailed records of experimental procedures, parameters, and results.
     - Contribute to the preparation of progress reports, presentations, and manuscripts.


Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credit

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: David Karpf

Department: School of Media and Public Affairs

Research Title: History of the Digital Future


Description:  

I will be writing a book manuscript on the "history of the digital future." This is the culmination of a research endeavor that has spanned the past five years, centered on an archival reading of the full back catalog of WIRED magazine.

The project has already resulted in a new course at GWU and in multiple public-facing essays. The book will offer a critical examination of the ambitions, promises, and track record of the ideological project advanced over the past 30 years by influential figures in Silicon Valley. By examining the stories that have been repeatedly told about the digital future over the past three decades, it will derive a set of insights that can be applied to contemporary discussions of emerging technologies.


Research Assistant Duties: 

The research assistant will be responsible for a variety of tasks in helping my assemble voluminous notes from archival research into a presentable book manuscript.

This will include reading, categorizing, and summarizing primary and secondary source materials, adding metadata to research notes, tracking and updating bibliographical entries, and helping to prepare chapter drafts for submission to my editor.

It will give the research assistant a firsthand view of the work that goes into preparation of an academic manuscript.


Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Adam Dean

Department: Political Science

Research Title: Labor Unions and the American Workplace


Description: 

I lead an interdisciplinary team of researchers that study the effects of unionization on various workplace outcomes. The bulk of our research focuses on the American healthcare industry, where we have linked labor unions to better outcomes for both healthcare workers and patients.

We have also explored labor union efforts to defend American democracy, and a recent report of ours found that local labor union power was associated with greater access to ballot drop boxes during the 2022 midterm elections.

Our broad research agenda will continue to explore the effects of unionization in America.

Research Assistant Duties:  

We are looking for research assistants with basic knowledge of statistics and data management (Stata or R). In addition to gathering and cleaning data, research assistants will also be asked to write background literature reviews about the effect of labor unions on various economic and political questions.

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Susan Sterner

Department: Corcoran School of the Arts & Design


Research Title: Research and transcription assistance for handmade artist book on women in El Salvador


Description: I am in the final phases of preparing to build a limited edition of handmade photographic artist books Estoy por aquí/ I am here (working title). The project is a glimpse into the daily lives and aesthetics of women who support extended families through the informal market system of a small town in El Salvador. The book brings together ten years of documentary photography, portraiture, field interviews, research, and scans of objects.

Research Assistant Duties:  

I would like the assistance of a Spanish native speaker to listen to and correct transcriptions of interviews with the women in the project; to help fact check (in Spanish and English sources); and to help compile a resources addendum to the book. The expectation would be to work together with me on transcriptions one day per week (5-8 hours) during March; and independently on fact checking and compiling resources during the month of April. If the student has experience with book arts there might also be an opportunity to be part of the production process over Summer 2024. 

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-8 hours

Credit hour option: Not available 

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


Professor: Alicia Cooperman

Department: Political Science

Research Title: Urban Politics and Local Accountability: Legislative Behavior for Climate Policy in Brazil


Description: 

Whose interests do local officials represent, and how does this shape policy outcomes? Cities are increasingly prominent actors in national and international debates, but mayors and councilors are accountable to local constituents, not national or global ones. We study legislative behavior in Brazilian cities, and we evaluate a theory that the neighborhood scale of public service provision creates incentives for some voters to demand – and politicians to provide – narrow local representation. We have already web-scraped legislative actions (proposed bills, policies, and public service requests) of city councilors in municipalities that vary by region, population, and climate risk status. We need support with extracting relevant information from PDFs and using text/content analysis to categorize legislative actions.

Research Assistant Duties:  

The skills requested are most applicable to a student with a background in computer science. We seek a research assistant with expert skills in Python and high attention to detail. Reading comprehension in Portuguese or Spanish is desired but not required. The research assistant will:
1) Use Python and OCR to convert PDFs to text, including pre-processing the PDFs or images to improve the quality of the text extraction.
2) Use Python to extract key elements of the legislative action from the text into a spreadsheet. This task may require knowledge of regular expressions and/or natural language processing.
3) Use Python or R to categorize legislative actions based on the issue/service area and location of service request or constituent beneficiary group.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 3-5 hours

Credit hour option*: 2 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Alexa Alice Joubin

Department: Digitial Humanities Institute

Research Title: Research Assistant Position in AI


Description: 

Trustworthiness lies at the heart of current debates about generative artificial intelligence (AI). In the context of higher education, educators and researchers play a key role in designing and implementing trustworthy AI in student-centered pedagogies. Join us in our inclusive and dynamic work environment where you are empowered to make a difference and contribute to social justice causes.

Job ad: https://gwdhi.org/research-assistant-position/

The research assistant will earn internship credit. Time commitment: Approximately 55 hours over 6-8 weeks in summer 2024 (with possible extension into fall 2024).


Research Assistant Duties:  

Desirable Skills:

To test the hypothesis that faculty-led and evidence-based AI development and deployment enhances the trustworthiness and usability of AI, the George Washington University Trustworthy AI Initiative and Digital Humanities Institute seek to employ a research assistant who is proficient in:

- front-end coding and web development, debugging, responsive design
- back-end web maintenance: PHP
- customization of commercially available AI chatbots
- curation and formatting of proprietary dataset to train the AI
- installation of the AI chatbot on website via API integration
- beta-testing the AI chatbot and flagging errors
- coding pages to load quickly
- search engine optimization (SEO)

The faculty has already designed an open-access web-based textbook on film studies and critical theory. You will help to design and implement three new features:

- AI chatbot tutor trained only on the textbook content
- AI natural voice text-to-speech reader, such as GSpeech
- new chapters to be added to the online textbook

Prior experience appreciated but not required. The assistant does not have to possess all of these skills but should be a strong coder. Opportunities will be available for further training on the job.

Desirable Qualities:

- attention to detail
- strong communication skills
- creativity in problem solving
- time management skills

Number of openings: 2

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

To Apply: Email a cover letter and resume to Professor Alexa Alice Joubin, co-director of the Digital Humanities Institute, [email protected]

As the inaugural Public Interest Technology Scholar, Professor Joubin is an advocate for open education resources (OER) and deploying trustworthy artificial intelligence in higher education. She is a faculty affiliate at the National Science Foundation’s Institute for Trustworthy AI in Law & Society (TRAILS) and a faculty of the GW Trustworthy AI Initiative (TAI). Learn more about Professor Joubin’s work here.


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.


Professor: Dr. Jeffrey Brand

Department: Philosophy/Office of the Provost

Research Title: Philosophy of Law, second edition


Description: The research assistant (RA) will assist in producing a new edition of the principal author’s acclaimed textbook, Philosophy of Law: Introducing Jurisprudence (Bloomsbury 2013).

Research Assistant Duties: Duties may include gathering and summarizing new sources, suggesting topics for inclusion, proofreading draft chapters, updating references, formatting footnotes, compiling bibliographies, assembling further readings for students, and drafting study questions. Relevant sources may include court cases, statutes, scholarly journals, law reviews, monographs, edited collections, and handbooks.

Number of openings: 1

Average weekly time commitment: 5-7 hours

Credit hour option*: 3 credits

Submit Resume/Cover Letter to: [email protected]


*If seeking academic credit, you must complete an Honors Contract.