Project Manager, Algorithm

University of Chicago

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Friday, December 22, 2023


BSD SUR - OHNS: Thirty Million Words

About the Department

The TMW Center for Early Learning + Public Health at the University of Chicago develops, tests, and implements evidence-based interventions designed to promote very young children’s cognitive and social-emotional development, with a priority placed on that of children living in poverty. TMW Center interventions are designed to be overlaid onto existing health, education, and social service systems working at scale in a given community in order to meet families where they already are. The TMW Center has a robust research and development strategy that includes further development and testing of TMW interventions; harnessing technology to support behavior change, intervention engagement, and analysis; and furthering strategies to engage parents in the TMW Center’s interventions across the health, early learning, and social service sectors.

Job Summary

We are seeking a highly motivated individual to lead a team of engineers in developing and optimizing algorithms that measure aspects of children’s language environments and language development. This position will play a critical role in the success of cross-disciplinary, data-centered projects focused on speech/signal processing. Responsibilities will include project management of algorithm initiatives and support for the end-to-end lifecycle of algorithm development from outlining requirements, quality assurance to support data integrity, and conducting experiments.


  • Collects new requirements and identifies new metrics that can be implemented to capture the early language environment and language development.
  • Collaborates across the TMW Center leadership algorithm team, hardware and software developers, and user experience team to set success criteria and align algorithm priorities and solutions to center goals.
  • Creates project plans for scope and timelines. Identifies and resolves conflicts to support changes over time and keeps stakeholders informed.
  • Manages the backlog of algorithm tasks across data science, audio data, and metrics.
  • Supports quality assurance, testing, and provides technical assistance to stakeholders.
  • Identifies and sources new data for training algorithms.
  • Monitors metrics and user research, identifies problems to continuously improve processes, systems, and performance.
  • Conducts site visits at various early childcare settings within Connecticut to inform the development of the algorithm. Occasional travel to Connecticut will be required, not to exceed 10%.
  • Presents findings from observations of the Connecticut project to PI and other stakeholders.
  • Applies research principles and relevant subject matter knowledge relevant to administer a research project. With a moderate level of direction, manages lab and/or research-related duties and tasks. Helps develop, design and conduct research projects according to plan.
  • Supports data collection and analytical needs of research projects. Conducts literature reviews and helps write reports and manuscripts. Ensures project compliance with different policies, procedures, directives, and mandates.
  • Performs other related work as needed.

Minimum Qualifications


Minimum requirements include a college or university degree in related field.

Work Experience:

Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through 2-5 years of work experience in a related job discipline.



Preferred Qualifications


  • Advanced degree (e.g. MS, PhD) in psychology, cognitive science, computational linguistics, data science, statistics, computer science or similar fields.

Technical Skills or Knowledge:

  • Background in machine learning and large language models.
  • Data mining and extract (ETLs).
  • Working on audio or speech data.
  • Knowledge of child development or linguistics.
  • Proficiency with Word, Excel, Teams, Outlook, and PowerPoint, as well as conduct and participate in Zoom meetings on camera.

Preferred Competencies

  • Relay complex technical insights in simple terms to inform business decisions.
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills with focus on minding the details to identify and address issues proactively.
  • Excellent project management skills with the ability to manage dependencies across multiple work streams and keep stakeholders regularly updated with changes and risks.
  • Excellent organizational skills, including strong attention to detail.
  • Proven ability to establish and stick to timelines.
  • Problem-solving skills, including a strong ability to prioritize.
  • Takes initiative and sound independent judgment.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to build diverse relationships and manage professional workload with minimal supervision.

Application Documents

  • Resume/CV (required)
  • Cover Letter (required)

When applying, the document(s) MUST be uploaded via the My Experience page, in the section titled Application Documents of the application.

Job Family


Role Impact

Individual Contributor

FLSA Status


Pay Frequency


Scheduled Weekly Hours


Benefits Eligible


Drug Test Required


Health Screen Required


Motor Vehicle Record Inquiry Required


Posting Statement

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, military or veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

We seek a diverse pool of applicants who wish to join an academic community that places the highest value on rigorous inquiry and encourages a diversity of perspectives, experiences, groups of individuals, and ideas to inform and stimulate intellectual challenge, engagement, and exchange.

All offers of employment are contingent upon a background check that includes a review of conviction history. A conviction does not automatically preclude University employment. Rather, the University considers conviction information on a case-by-case basis and assesses the nature of the offense, the circumstances surrounding it, the proximity in time of the conviction, and its relevance to the position.

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