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Director of Data Analysis & Research

University of North Carolina System Office
North Carolina, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Aug 16, 2021

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Position Type
Administrative, Academic Affairs, Institutional Research & Planning
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
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Job Details

Director of Data Analysis & Research
The University of North Carolina System

The University of North Carolina System is a treasured public institution dedicated to serving the people of North Carolina through world-class teaching, research, and community engagement. Today, nearly 250,000 students are enrolled in our 16 universities across the state and at the NC School of Science and Mathematics. 

Individually Remarkable. Collectively Extraordinary. 
The UNC System is one of the strongest and most successful systems of public higher education in the nation. It’s mission—to discover, create, transmit, and apply knowledge to address the needs of individuals and society—remains true to the University’s founding ideal of shared knowledge in a free society. In addition, the UNC System has a long-standing commitment to public service. The UNC Center for Public Television, the UNC Health Care System, the NC Arboretum, and other University affiliates and programs reap social and economic benefits for the citizens of the state. 

System Office
The UNC System Office, located in Chapel Hill, houses the offices of the president and senior administrative staff for the University. This core administrative staff executes the policies of the UNC Board of Governors and provides System-wide leadership and support in the areas of academic affairs, business and financial management, communications, strategy and policy, human resources, legal affairs, and government relations. The UNC System Office also has administrative oversight of a number of University affiliates.

The Opportunity
The UNC System Strategy and Policy Division is charged with enhancing and furthering the UNC System’s strategic goals. The division partners with the President and chancellors on System-wide strategic initiatives, is responsible for the institutional performance measurement framework, and serves as a higher-education policy expert to the President, the Board of Governors, and the NC General Assembly. The Division also tracks and assesses state and national trends in higher education and their likely impact on the UNC System, and proactively identifies new initiatives to support System strategies. The Division provides oversight of the NC Principal Fellows Programs, Teaching Fellows & Teacher Recruitment Programs, GEAR UP, Educator Preparation & Laboratory Schools, and policy and research initiatives.

The Director of Data Analysis and Research provide data analysis and research, reporting and communication, and project management leadership. Responsibilities include: conducting studies including the use of statistical models to address higher education-related research questions; designing, conducting, documenting, and evaluating results of studies/journal articles related to various areas of higher education; responding to specific research requests from the Senior Vice President for Strategy and Policy and other division leaders; preparing materials ranging from detailed, descriptive, and graphical reports to concise summaries and talking points on complex issues for a variety of audiences at all levels of an organization, often under tight deadlines; preparing reports, visualizations, and written products for a diverse audience to include internal leadership, Board of Governors, and external reports; providing expert analysis and counsel in the review and development of data-related goals, metrics, policies, and implementation strategies to further the strategic goals of the University; and managing projects from end-to-end including annual updates to Strategic Plan metrics, research studies, surveys, and program evaluations.


  • A master’s degree in public policy, applied statistics, data science, analytics, social science research, measurement, assessment, research methods, quantitative psychology, or a related discipline and at least 5 years of related experience; or a doctoral degree in public policy, applied statistics, data science, analytics, social science research, measurement, assessment, research methods, quantitative psychology, or a related discipline and at least 3 years of related experience. 
  • PhD is preferred but not required.
  • Experience in institutional research and/or data and analytics work in higher education systems.
  • Knowledge of higher education both within and outside of North Carolina.
  • Advanced experience with data analysis software (e.g., SAS, R, SPSS, Stata- SAS experience preferred) to manage, manipulate, and analyze large datasets. 

Preferred Competencies 

  • Advanced data analysis and statistics skills and experience.
  • Fluent with Microsoft Office (including advanced Excel proficiency).
  • Demonstrated ability to understand and use data to make a data-driven case.
  • Ability to locate and synthesize research on relevant higher education topics.
  • Experience with data visualization software (Tableau).
  • Demonstrated ability to prioritize multiple tasks and function in a fast-paced and collaborative environment.
  • An understanding and experience with national higher education data (e.g., IPEDS, College Scorecard, etc.).
  • An understanding of the limitations/tradeoffs of different quantitative methodologies, especially causal research.

Chapel Hill, where the System Office is located, is part of a larger area called “The Triangle,” a term that references Research Triangle Park, a globally recognized center of research, innovation and thought leadership located between, and around, the three cities of Durham, Raleigh, and Chapel Hill. Each of these cities is home to one or more UNC System institutions, as well as private universities, and other centers of learning and research. 

These three cities, as well as the cities and communities in the surrounding areas, offer a mix of suburban, urban, and rural living, combined with access to an outstanding array of civic, cultural, and athletic events. Outdoor enthusiasts will be thrilled with the area’s comfortable climate and easy access to both mountains and sea. Food lovers will appreciate access to a thriving Triangle restaurant scene often profiled in national media.

More affordable living than many metropolitan areas and host to many vibrant businesses, the Triangle area is part of the reason North Carolina was voted #1 by Forbes as the “Best State to Do Business.” Often ranked high on lists of best places to live, the Triangle area offers beauty, diversity, and interest for residents and visitors alike. For more information, see:

How to Apply
Interested applicants, please visit: For priority consideration, please apply by June 24, 2021.

The UNC System Office is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, disability, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or status as a protected veteran.

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