Director - Research & Planning

Harold Washington College (HWC)is one of the seven City Colleges of Chicago. HWC is located in the Chicago Loop and serves nearly 11,000 students. HWC is a federally designated Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and Minority Serving Institution (MSI) with more than 70 percent Latinx or Black students. The college offers an exceptional liberal arts and sciences curriculum and programs in Business, Early Childhood, Architecture, and Digital Media. HWC is City Colleges’ Center for Business. The college is also home to the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program and is currently the only community college in the city to offer a business degree accessible entirely online. In addition, the college has program partnerships with leading industry organizations such as Aon, Year Up Chicago, DePaul University, and the Joffrey Ballet.

Reporting to the Vice President, the Director, Research and Planning supports the planning and implementation of the strategic initiatives established by the college. Responsible for coordinating and conducting institutional research functions to provide information that supports institutional planning, policy formulation and decision making at the college.

The Director, Research and Planning provides data support for the College’s Academic, Student Support, and Administrative Units, exercising and demonstrating expertise and skills specific to education research, data analytics, and technical writing. Working extensively and in close collaboration with departments, the Director, Research and Planning executes projects and initiatives in accordance with the needs of the college, including accreditation and reporting requirements.


  • Provides research and analytic support to college leadership (President, Vice President), administrators, staff, and faculty with timely and relevant research, data analysis, data interpretation, and information to support the college’s strategies, and to increase and improve institutional effectiveness and performance.
  • Conducts and oversees staff conducting qualitative research studies and data analyses to provide the college community with accurate and relevant data and information that supports the college’s strategic planning, policy formulation and decision-making.
  • Participates and collaborates with college administrators in compiling, analyzing and presenting institutional data to support assessment and decision- making in various areas including program evaluation, student learning/program outcomes, student services, enrollment management, resource allocation, and staffing.
  • Works collaboratively with college administrators in establishing benchmarks, key performance indicators, score cards, dashboards, and other metrics and performance measures.
  • Provides statistical data and prepares reports to comply with reporting requirements from State agencies (i.e. Illinois Community College Board/ICCB) as well as federal agencies (i.e. U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics/NCES).
  • Creates and manages systems to support requests for data research and analysis and works with IT and the Office of Decision Support to identify, extract and report data from appropriate data systems (Data Warehouse, PeopleSoft).
  • Defines an analytical agenda for the college to support data-driven performance dialogs, a timely response to requests in support of decision-making and full compliance with external requirements.
  • Coordinates the compilation of data, evidence and artifacts from multiple sources (data systems, surveys, reports) for use in the college’s regional and specialized accreditation self-studies and site visits.
  • Designs and administers surveys (i.e. student and classroom surveys) and other data collection instruments; collects and analyzes data; and prepares narrative and statistical reports.
  • Responds to requests for data to support specific needs of faculty and college and district level administrators. Maintains statistical and other data for use in the preparation of reports and graphic presentations.
  • Analyzes complex data sets using quantitative and qualitative analyses and statistical techniques. Uses statistical software such as SAS in performing data analysis.
  • Consults with faculty and academic administrators in the design and maintenance of an integrated assessment system to evaluate measurable student learning outcomes at the course, program, and institutional/college level.
  • Works with college leadership in developing guidelines related to program evaluation, program review, learning objectives, outcomes assessment and institutional effectiveness.
  • Provides guidance to key stakeholders in the program assessment process, assisting in identifying assessment instruments, completing qualitative and quantitative data analysis, and using assessment results for the continuous improvement of academic quality.
  • Develops and presents workshops and training on the use and application of information technology systems and tools (i.e. Open Book), guiding college administrators and faculty on the processes for accessing data and information about the institution.
  • Works with the Office of Decision Support to design and implement methods relevant to data collection and analysis, data management, and reporting and use of assessment results.
  • Reviews academic and operational initiatives for alignment with the district’s strategic plan and provides direct feedback to the College President and Vice President.


Education, Training and Experience

  • A Master’s degree from an accredited college or university in Education or the Social or Behavioral Sciences (Sociology, Psychology, Economics), or a related field of study
  • Completion of Ph.D. in relevant field preferred
  • Three to five years of experience in institutional research or relevant research experience in quantitative and qualitative research methods, research design and methodology, and statistics
  • A combination of education and experience may be taken into consideration based on the applicant’s credentials provided the minimum degree requirement is met.
  • High level of proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) required; experience with SPSS or other relational databases
  • Experience with higher education accreditation processes highly desirable
  • Experience with statistical analysis software such as SAS highly desirable
  • Experience in the assessment of student learning outcomes desirable
  • Experience in the development of performance metrics and continuous improvement systems and tools desirable
  • Familiarity with Access and SQL data query skills a plus

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