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Title Excerpt Author Date Total Comments Recent Comment
GIS: Mapping Kent County One of our talented employees, Nathan Mosurinjohn, comments on the GIS niche he specializes in at the CSR: “GIS is short for Geographic Information Systems, which is used to both analyze spatial data and to create maps. The GIS program we use at the CSR is fully customizable, so the… Nikole Voss 08/24/09 0
New CSR Technical Assistant As of June 2009, CSR welcomes a new technical assistant who specializes in ArcGIS, an advanced computer mapping program! To learn more about technical assistant positions, visit our employment opportunities page. Nathan Mosurinjohn Hometown: Fort Atkinson, WI Degree: B.A. in Geography and International Development Favorite Research Software: ArcGIS Stay tuned… Nikole Voss 06/01/09 0
Research Associate Experiences One important position that CSR offers is that of the Research Associate. This position is open to recent college graduates interested in pursuing graduate school. Candidates are often seeking additional experience in a research setting before continuing their education, and CSR provides this opportunity. Two of our recent CSR Research Associates have written the following comments about their experiences at the Center. Nathan Medeiros-Ward Research Associate from January 2007-June 2008 Current location: University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Ph.D. program in Cognitive Psychology It sounds cliché, but there are so many things I could write about with regard to my experience at the CSR and how it prepared me for my PhD program. Just today, one of the Research Assistants in my research lab, who is also one of my students in the statistics lab I teach, was asking me about graduate school. He was fretting about getting into graduate school and succeeding. In our conversation, he asked me how I could possibly know what I know about teaching and research, both in terms of statistics and working with statistical software (i.e., SPSS), as well as designing and running studies with sound experimental protocol and clearly defined theories. I explained that my undergraduate education played a role in developing the skills I am using daily in graduate school; however, the contribution of my time spent at the CSR before graduate school is really what deserves most of the credit. At the CSR, I gained experience in working with students, IT personnel, clients, and faculty. These interactions prepared me for my current role as a graduate student, because graduate school is (among other things) all about relationships. I’m not sure I would have gained this “people” aspect from another job, and I guarantee that I will not work with a better group of people than what the CSR has to offer. In addition, I also developed technical and analytic skills at the CSR that I’ve already applied in numerous settings to automate and simplify processes such as data entry, to reduce unnecessary work and get the most out of my Research Assistants’ time, to provide an overall organizational structure for how my lab operates, and to learn how to program a gigantic driving simulator that I’m convinced was intentionally made abstruse to frustrate new graduate students in the program! Amanda Stek Research Associate from May 2008-present Prospective location: Graduate school for degree in Public Policy and International Affairs I graduated from Calvin College with a degree in Political Science. I knew that the field I would be pursuing in graduate school would require me to understand and carry out many different types of research, and while I did take classes in research methods and statistics, I was not satisfied with my level of proficiency in the areas of quantitative or qualitative analysis. I applied for the Research Associate position at Calvin’s Center for Social Research in an attempt to develop that skill-set. Shortly after starting the position last May, I realized how fortunate I was to be working at CSR. I have acquired the skills that Nate describes above including competency in statistical analysis software like SPSS and Stata. I have had the privilege to work on research projects that are diverse and imperative. I have learned from collaborative and teamwork-oriented colleagues how to effectively manage and supervise student research assistants. My contact with clients, including professors, community leaders, and clergy has helped me develop professional communication skills and confidence.  I have also developed editing and designing skills with software including InDesign. In addition to these skills, I have had the privilege of working with a group of people that truly live out God’s call to love your neighbor as yourself. The staff actively supported me while I applied to graduate school and other research programs. They are gracious and patient as I continue to learn new software and research methods. They encourage me to pursue research topics that are of interest to me. Very few work environments are like the one that the CSR staff has created. I am more than halfway through my term with the CSR and already wish I was staying another year. I will leave this office better prepared for graduate school, better equipped to work in and organize effective work environments, and more determined to continue to follow God’s call into research and the field of social science.  Nikole Voss 02/11/09 0
Dotmarketing Presents Findings Concerning Calvin’s Website Please join us Wednesday, October 1, 2008, at 3:30 p.m. in the Commons Annex Lecture Hall to hear the executive summary results of Calvin’s Web Site Audience Research Study.  This study was conducted by Miami-based Dotmarketing.com with technical assistance from the Center for Social Research.  It examined the effectiveness of… Nikole Voss 10/01/08 0
Sara returns from a summer internship at ICPSR One of our very own student researchers, Sara Achauer, was chosen out of an elite group of applicants to spend her summer as an intern for the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research.  Read what she had to say about her experience: “This summer I was an intern at the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), a unit within the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan. ICPSR is one of the largest dative archives and their mission statement is to: ‘Acquire and preserve social science data, provide open and equitable access to these data, and promote effective data use.’ I was a data processor for the Child Care and Early Education Resource Connection, one of the specialized archives within ICPSR. I personally worked with the National Maternal and Infant Health Survey 1988 and the Survey of Income and Program Participation 2004 data. It was my job to acquire the correct data and related documents, write the metadata for each study, and produce formatted files for the use of member institutions. While working at the internship, I was provided the opportunity to participate in ICPSR’s Summer Program in Quantitative Methods of Social Research. I took two graduate classes: Regression Analysis I Introduction and II Linear Models. For more information see http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/sumprog/index.html . The skills I learned over the summer gave me a more holistic view of data and research that will positively influence my work at the Center for Social Research and my personal research as a Sociology major.” We’re glad to have you back after this great opportunity, Sara! Nikole Voss 08/29/08 0
Employment Opportunities We are closing applications for our cohort starting work in Summer 2014 as of April 11. Applications may still be submitted at any time, but are not likely to be considered until a later date. Student Research Assistants Student research assistants support and manage ongoing projects. Common tasks include data entry and audio transcriptions, but the RA job is primarily about problem-solving in response to unique project needs. We seek out applicants with strong personal initiative, who can take responsibility for meeting project deadlines and communicate clearly with on- and off-campus clients. Due to the extensive training we provide for our research assistants, we are particularly interested in students who have at least one or two years left at Calvin. CSR offers a unique opportunity to develop academic research skills, technical knowledge and business teamwork. If you have the motivation, we will help you to further develop your abilities. For more details on skills and qualifications, view the full job description below. Contact CSR about this job | View job description [PDF] | Apply online | Current staff Research Specialist Research Specialists are full- or part-time employees with exceptional interests and/or skills in technical field(s), such as statistical analysis, computer programming, database management, geographic information systems (GIS), web sites and graphic design, etc. Specialists may be project managers for technical projects and may supervise and train undergraduates involved in related research tasks. The Research Specialist position is a full-time, 1- to 2-year appointment for recent Calvin graduates only. CSR offers a high-caliber opportunity to develop your resumé through learning academic research skills, technical knowledge, and business teamwork. This is a prime opportunity for graduating seniors interested in gaining practical experience before applying to graduate school in the Social Sciences. For more details on skills and qualifications, view the full job description below. Contact CSR about this job | View job description [PDF] | Apply online | Current staff Research Associate The Research Associate assists in the management of ongoing campus and community projects. As part of this project management, the Research Associate supervises, trains, and supports the student research team. The Research Associate is responsible for assigning project work, making and meeting deadlines, preparing data, conducting data analysis, and working alongside the other CSR staff to meet project goals. We seek out applicants with strong personal initiative, who have a background in statistics, familiar with the Social Sciences, and who possess the ability to communicate clearly with on- and off-campus clients. The Research Associate position is a full-time, 1- to 2-year appointment for recent Calvin graduates only. CSR offers a high-caliber opportunity to develop your résumé through learning academic research skills, technical knowledge, and business teamwork. This is a prime opportunity for graduating seniors interested in gaining practical experience before applying to graduate school in the Social Sciences. For more details on skills and qualifications, view the full job description below. Contact CSR about this job | View job description [PDF] | Apply online | Current Staff Nikole Voss 07/29/88 0
Contact Us CSR is located in the Raybrook Building, 2041 Raybrook St SE, across Burton Street from the main campus and south of Calvin Theological Seminary. Our mailing address remains the college address at 3201 Burton St. SE. For more information contact: Center for Social Research Calvin College Raybrook Building 2041, Suite… Nikole Voss 07/29/88 0
Projects & Services Current Projects At any given time, CSR supports or conducts several long-term projects and at least a dozen shorter-term projects. Please visit our weblog to see the latest news on current CSR projects. Request Services CSR provides free initial consultation on prospective projects. Feel free to contact us: •By telephone: (616) 526-7799 •By e-mail: csr@calvin.edu •On-line: Project Proposal Form. •By mail: Center for Social Research 3201 Burton, S.E. Grand Rapids, MI 49546 Small Grants Program CSR provides small grants of up to $1,000 to faculty members for use in their research that is not funded from other sources. Details about applying for a small grant can be found on the CSR website: small grant guidelines. Services Offered: •Research Design •Project Management and Budgeting •Survey Research (both web-based and mail surveys) •Qualitative Research (content analysis, focus groups, transcription) •Statistical Analysis (SPSS, Stata, Excel, Access, database design, statistical modeling) •Geographic Information Systems (GIS; data mapping and spatial analysis) •Presentation (report writing, preparation of charts and graphics, publication of findings) Nikole Voss 07/29/88 0