University of Waterloo

Research Coordinator

Requisition ID 2024-12101
Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association
Employment Type
Time Type
Hiring Range
$54,119 - $67,649
Job Category
Job Location : Location


Representing over 33,000 students, the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association advocates for the needs of its members to make their end-to-end post-secondary career a meaningful and positive experience through intentional connections. As WUSA continues to expand its scope for supporting students, the importance of making decisions and providing services need to be through intentional quality research. The Research Coordinator is responsible for obtaining the information and data that underlie and inform evidence-based planning of WUSA services and programs that enhance the student experience.  The Research Coordinator is accountable to the Research Analyst for designing and facilitating the logistical implementation of research projects to ensure that quality data and student feedback is being collected at regular intervals throughout the year to inform strategic planning.  


This position is contingent on funding. 


Supports organization-wide projects, advocacy and goals by conducting high-quality research and evaluatio

  • Develops appropriate and timely process and outcome evaluation plans, data gathering methods, analysis and use of the results to support continuous program improvements
  • Manages, and conducts ongoing, timely evaluation to determine the effectiveness of WUSA programs and services
  • Designs and implements qualitative and quantitative research projects including interviews, surveys and focus groups
  • Analyzes quantitative and qualitative data to articulate data trends and outcomes
  • Analyzes current WUSA data collection systems and evaluation processes to identify trends and opportunities for streamlining
  • Facilitates surveys and feedback mechanisms for WUSA co-op students, part-time staff and volunteers
  • Develops and maintains a systematic process for completing research requests in a timely manner
  • Develops research methods and practices that allow for broad ranging consultation with students-at- large on priority research areas of WUSA
  • Facilitates the ethical collection, management, and storage of sensitive data related to the student experience

Engages with all departments within WUSA to develop and implement research projects aligned with organizational strategic and operational goals

  • Manages all aspects of WUSA participation in any large-scale surveys or research projects (ranging from large scale events, commercial operations, advocacy, and equity-based services)
  • Supports indicator development and ongoing reporting for WUSA's operational and strategic measures
  • Prepares annual and customized reports and presentations for WUSA senior leadership and relevant departments
  • Analyzes trends and patterns in WUSA’s performance over time using various benchmarks and comparative data
  • Prepares standard and customized reports to support planning and evaluation activities
  • Completes research reports outlining the full scope of the research requested along with multiple recommendations for future steps
  • Uses external data from a variety of sources, in combination with institutional data to prepare analysis and reports that addresses research questions

Communicates research findings to support the development of actionable recommendations

  • Develops accurate reports and presentations to convey complex information in an understandable and compelling manner using relevant data visualizations (graphs, presentations)
  • Proactively provides direction and serves as a consultant to the management team in the creation and ongoing maintenance of their evaluation plans, data gathering methods, analysis, and use of the results to support evidence-based continuous program improvements
  • Utilize research results to develop actionable recommendations for departments within WUSA
  • Presents data analytics in an efficient and easily understandable way to a wide variety of audiences to ensure that they are equipped with the information necessary to successfully implement changes to relevant programs and services
  • Ensures data and information is placed into the proper context combining WUSA data with both qualitative and quantitative environmental/external data and appropriate narrative
  • Supports the development of presentations and briefing notes at internal and external meetings or conferences
  • Liaises with the Governance Manager and Advocacy Specialist on research priorities relating to internal WUSA advocacy policies and procedures
  • Regularly communicates with the Manager, Advocacy and Stakeholder Relations, Equity Specialist, and Stakeholder Relations Officer to identify research findings that are relevant to municipal, provincial and federal stakeholders as well as equity-based student groups
  • Serves on appropriate committees and groups, offering analytical expertise and fostering data information sharing and collaborative approaches on a variety of projects
  • Serve as a liaison and resource for University of Waterloo offices and units consulting and conducting institutional research with undergraduate students

Understand and applies current, relevant research methods and trends

  • Maintains a clear understanding of the characteristics of current students including their preferences with respect to completing surveys, questionnaires, and other research instruments
  • Keeps current with respect to best practices in research and evaluation methodologies, as well as trends in communicating with students and relevant stakeholders
  • Investigates new data analysis tools, systems and practices for enhancing program evaluation within WUSA
  • Develops productive, collaborative working relationships with relevant colleagues and campus partners
  • Develops and maintains communication with other post-secondary student unions and associations to accomplish research projects

Supervises Student Staff and Supports their Development

  • Hires, trains and manages a team of student employees to help with data analysis, research, and report writing
  • Implements an effective recruitment plan for student employees, manages their payroll information and ensure appropriate levels of staff are available to respond to WUSA’s requests
  • Creates opportunities for leadership and development whenever possible within the student staff
  • Facilitates the undertaking of a research project led by each student employee for the purpose of professional development
  • Executes termly employee evaluations and regular check-ins with staff to provide constructive feedback and allow for additional training and sharing of resources as needed
  • Organizes and implements staff appreciation initiatives to celebrate staff and encourage retention


  • Completion of a bachelor's degree preferred from a social science field, emphasizing research and evaluation and/or assessment, such as psychology, social psychology, sociology, higher education, student affairs or related degree or a combination of equivalent experience
  • At least 3 years of experience in a data analysis and/or research role, preferably in an educational setting
  • Experience with primary and secondary research methods
  • Exposure and understanding in both quantitative and qualitative research (methodological design, instrument selection, statistical analysis, results interpretation)
  • Progressive data analysis experience, preferably related to a research environment that impacts the student experience
  • Experience in project management
  • Practiced and confident report writer and presenter of research findings
  • Experience working directly with post-secondary students is considered an asset
  • Critical thinking skills to help with developing plans for research and strategic planning documents
  • Knowledge of social science research methods and familiarity with student affairs/higher education assessment philosophies and practices is preferred
  • Strong organizational skills; capable of spotting patterns and trends and the ability to distill large amounts of information into succinct, clear actions and recommendations
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, with an ability to present and explain research to a wide variety of audiences
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team; ability to take initiative and be proactive
  • Familiarity with research methods, academic integrity, and proper citation
  • Advanced: MS Word, Excel, Qualtrics
  • Proficient: PowerPoint, Power BI or equivalent
  • Other: Relational Databases, SharePoint/Office 365 Suite

Equity Statement

The University of Waterloo acknowledges that much of our work takes place on the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishinaabeg, and Haudenosaunee peoples. Our main campus is situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land granted to the Six Nations that includes six miles on each side of the Grand River. Our active work toward reconciliation takes place across our campuses through research, learning, teaching, and community building, and is co-ordinated within the Office of Indigenous Relations.


The University values the diverse and intersectional identities of its students, faculty, and staff. The University regards equity and diversity as an integral part of academic excellence and is committed to accessibility for all employees. The University of Waterloo seeks applicants who embrace our values of equity, anti-racism and inclusion.  As such, we encourage applications from candidates who have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, including applicants who identify as First Nations, Métis and/or Inuk (Inuit), Black, racialized, a person with a disability, women and/or 2SLGBTQ+.


Positions are open to qualified candidates who are legally entitled to work in Canada. 


The University of Waterloo is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. If you have any application, interview, or workplace accommodation requests, please contact Human Resources at  or 519-888-4567, ext. 45935.


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