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Research Programmer

Position Information

Position Information

Date Posted 11/10/2017
Open Until Filled No
Anticipated Application Deadline (Close date) 01/09/2018
Working Title Research Programmer
Job Classification Research IV
Department Name 13226-Biological Sciences
Job Type Staff
Position Number 0135852
Hiring Range $30,732.00 - $49,296.00
Position Description

The Kitzes Lab at the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Biological Sciences ( is seeking a Research Programmer to assist with research studying the spatial distributions of bird and bat species at landscape scales.

The Kitzes Lab is currently placing autonomous acoustic recorders throughout landscapes in western Pennsylvania to record ambient sounds. This data is then processed to identify the species present near each recorder and their relative activity levels, which we analyze to determine the factors that influence where organisms are found and why.

We are seeking an experienced data analyst and programmer to support the development of algorithms and software to identify the species present in these recorded sound files, as well as to assist with the placement and retrieval of recorders in the field.

Competitive applicants will have several, though not necessarily all, of the following skills:
- Experience programming in Python (or a similar language), and the ability to rapidly learn new languages and techniques, as needed.
- Experience working with development tools and platforms such as GitHub, Docker, and Amazon AWS.
- Experience with machine learning and/or classification methods.
- Experience with statistical modeling, including mixed models and/or Bayesian analysis.
- Experience working in Unix/Linux environments.
- Experience with Raspberry Pi’s, UDOO boards, or other single board computers.
- A working knowledge of the principles of audio recording, amplification, or analysis.
- The ability to walk up to three miles on uneven terrain.
- Strong verbal and written communication skills.

This position is available initially for one year, with an extension for a second year available pending a positive first-year review. We may be able to provide flexibility in work hours and location, if requested by applicants.

Education Required Baccalaureate
Minimum Related Experience Level Required 1-2 years experience
Additional Education and/or Experience Essential to the Position
Required Licenses/Certifications
Child Protection Clearances

The following PA Act 153 clearances and background checks may be required prior to commencement of employment and as a condition of continued employment: PA State Police Criminal Record Check, FBI Criminal Record Check, PA Child Abuse History Clearance.

Background Check For position finalists, employment with the University will require successful completion of a background check.
Assignment Category Regular, Full-Time
Percent Effort 100
Scheduled Work Hours 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
If Varied Work Schedule, Please Specify
If Part Time, Actual Standard Weekly Hours
Campus Pittsburgh
University Benefits

The University offers an excellent comprehensive benefits package for all full-time and part-time regular employees including:

• Education benefits and a retirement plan with employer match

• Group medical insurance, life insurance, and optional vision and dental insurance

• Free transit service within Allegheny County for employees of the Oakland campus (Port Authority Transit)

• Time off benefits including vacation, sick and personal time

For more information regarding the University’s benefits package, please visit

Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

  1. * Do you have a bachelor's degree or will have completed one by the end of this current term?
    • Yes
    • No
  2. * How did you hear of this position at the University of Pittsburgh?
    • Career Development Center (CDC)
    • Chronicle of Higher Education
    • Commonwealth Workforce Development System (Formerly PA CareerLink)
    • Currently a University Employee
    • Pitt Career Services
    • Pittsburgh Post Gazette
    • Pittsburgh Technology Council
    • PittSource Search
    • Referral (Friend, University Employee, etc.), please specify below
    • Internet Search
    • Other: (Please specify below)
  3. * Please specify from above (if applicable):

    (Open Ended Question)

Applicant Documents

Required Documents
  1. Cover Letter
  2. Resume
Optional Documents