Position Title: Research Assistant, Career advancement supports for workers on the autism spectrum
Job Type: Part-time, Contract (~10 hours a week)
Duration: 5-months, Nov 2021 – March 2022
Reports to: Health System Impact Doctoral Fellow
Salary Range: $26-31/hour
Office Location: Remote in Canada
The goal of this research project is to develop recommendations that will help employers support workers on the autism spectrum to advance in their careers, with a focus on performance management, professional development, and career advancement.
This study is being undertaken because finding and retaining employment is a significant challenge for many people on the autism spectrum. Despite being able and eager to work, Autistic Canadians experience high unemployment rates, precarious working hours, low pay, underutilization of skills, or working in roles for which they are overqualified. Although evidence about the career advancement of workers on the spectrum is lacking, research on workers with disabilities shows that they lag-behind many workers without disabilities in terms of performance ratings, promotion rates, and potential for promotion. Evidence further demonstrates that employers who do not have an awareness of autism will not hire Autistic workers or will not know how to best support them in the workplace. There is a need for employers to develop “autism-confidence,” which refers to one’s understanding of how to include people on the spectrum in the workplace. These poor employment outcomes not only negatively impact people on the spectrum, but also amass economic costs through output and productivity losses, as well as increased reliance on government supports.
The Research Assistant is responsible for assisting with the day-to-day operations of the research project.
- Coordination of the project;
- Ensuring protocols and procedures are followed and deliverables and deadlines are met;
- Conducting a comprehensive search of published and grey literature and summarizing the literature (template provided);
- Collaborating with and facilitating communication among the CASDA staff, and the study populations of interest from across Canada;
- Assisting with organizing and managing focus groups; ensuring that Research Ethics Board (REB) protocols and procedures are adhered to;
- Assisting with the qualitative data collection; assisting with summaries of focus group data;
- Assisting with knowledge translation and dissemination.
- You will also be responsible for administrative duties pertaining to the project such as ensuring project records are maintained and stored appropriately.
Working under the general direction of the Health System Impact Doctoral-Fellow, you will be responsible for assisting with the execution of the deliverables described below.
- A report on the document analysis of peer reviewed and grey literature pertaining to performance management, professional development, and career advancement of workers on the spectrum.
- A summary of the results of focus group interviews with employers, human resource managers and workers on the autism spectrum regarding performance management, professional development, and career advancement of workers on the spectrum.
- The performance management, professional development, and career advancement strategy guide for employers to be posted on the Inclusive Workspaces website.
Master’s degree or working towards completion of a master’s degree in the fields of health sciences, social sciences, policy, industrial relations, rehabilitative sciences or any related field, or an acceptable combination of education, skills, and experience.
Skills and Experience
- Extensive computer and technical skills including: word processing, database management, internet/email, and audio-visual/presentation packages.
- Experience with academic and grey literature searching, and summarization of literature is required. Ability to keep well-organized records of research data is required.
- Education or demonstrated experience with qualitative data analysis is necessary. Excellent organizational, analytical, and problem-solving skills; excellent interpersonal skills (i.e.., tact and confidentiality of research).
- Strong project coordination, research and reporting skills; experience and comfort with note taking in virtual group settings is required.
- Demonstrated ability in research project planning, implementation and coordination would be a strong asset but is not required.
- Experience with NVivo software is an asset.
- Experience in disability research or working with people with disabilities, especially people on the Autism spectrum, or self-identifying as Autistic, would also be a strong asset.
Interested applicants are invited to submit a cover letter, a current resume and a writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.
The Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorder Alliance (CASDA) is composed of individuals and organizations across the country who have joined forces to advocate for a better quality of life for Autistic people living in Canada. CASDA and its members are committed to ensuring the implementation of a comprehensive National Autism Strategy that addresses critical gaps in funding and policies, which are preventing Autistic people and their families from exercising their equal rights as Canadians. As a constructive policy generator, CASDA seeks to identify emerging gaps and make a real impact in the Canadian autism sector.
CASDA is an equal opportunity employer committed to maximizing the diversity of our organization. We strive towards building an Autistic-inclusive space. We actively encourage applications from individuals on the autism spectrum and from all equity seeking groups.