The League of Extraordinary Tiltfactor Seeks Ingenious Researcher

Tiltfactor Laboratory at Dartmouth College is seeking applications for a postdoctoral research position in Learning Sciences and Assessment for the 2013-2014 academic year. The postdoctoral researcher will be affiliated with Tiltfactor Laboratory (, the leading group in values-conscious game design and research, which is led by Dr. Mary Flanagan, Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Professor in Digital Humanities and Professor of Film & Media Studies at Dartmouth.


Tiltfactor Lab at Dartmouth College designs, creates, and studies games for social change. The lab’s projects include social impact games, which aim to build empathy and reduce stereotypes; games for health, which seek to educate players about issues in public health and health care delivery; and crowdsourcing games, which aim to harness the power of crowds to gather new information.  In our work, we focus on an approach we call ‘critical play’ that fosters human values and explore the artistic and innovative place of games and technology in culture. Given the multidisciplinary nature of our projects, the candidates for the position will likely have interests and expertise that span several disciplines, including, but not limited to, psychology, gaming, and human-computer interaction.

The postdoctoral researcher will design and conduct assessments and formal studies on games, such as the lab’s public health game POX: SAVE THE PEOPLE and the recent variation ZOMBIEPOX, and games addressing gender bias in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), such as the lab’s party games Awkward Moment and buffalo. The researcher’s work will include informal playtests and focus groups with games in development; quick, tactical assessments of a particular game’s efficacy and impact; as well as longitudinal studies testing the long-term effects of a game on players’ attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. In addition, the researcher will work closely with the design team to ensure the design of the lab’s games is informed by relevant theory and current research findings from psychology and related fields, and contribute novel research questions about games and their impact.  A background in psychology, learning science, or educational technology is essential, and experience with experimental design and both qualitative and quantitative research methods is highly favored. Candidates should have a Ph.D. in a relevant field, or be on track to finish by August 2013. The position is contingent upon funding.

The candidate’s passions should be well aligned with ours, which would allow the candidate to build his/her research profile within our community. Collaborating on and submitting articles to peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings, as well as working on grant proposals, will be expected, as will a high level of mentoring of the lab’s diverse and talented team of undergraduate design and research interns. No formal teaching requirement is anticipated, but teaching possibilities might open up over the course of the candidate’s time with the lab; at minimum, a few guest lectures and participation in some of Professor Flanagan’s classes and the weekly Digital Humanities salon discussion group will be expected (and fun!). We provide a provocative, central role in digital culture creation on campus, with regular open houses, demos, and game nights in our new home in Dartmouth’s Visual Arts Center, and the lab prides itself in being an eclectic, active, lively hub of creativity and innovation.

Review of candidates will begin on April 15, 2013 and will continue until the position is filled, with the position renewable upon successful completion of first year. We expect applicants to be familiar with our work and to be able to discuss specific ways they could contribute to it. Applicants should apply via email by submitting a letter of intent, CV, research statement, reprints or preprints of relevant publications, URLs (if applicable), and contact information for three references to: contact -at-tiltfactor -dot- org.

Dartmouth College is an equal opportunity employer and complies with applicable EEO and affirmative action regulations.

Essential Qualifications: To be considered, candidates should have a Ph.D. in psychology or learning sciences, or be on track to finish by August 2013. We unfortunately cannot accept ABD students for this position.

Education Required: Doctorate Degree