Job Overview


Opportunities are Open! Begin a challenging career with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), and you will help shape the workforce of tomorrow.  DOL offers rewarding opportunities to contribute to a noble mission; to serve and protect American workers, prepare them for new and better jobs, and to ensure the safety and fairness of American workplaces.

The Department of Labor values its customers. Every DOL employee is responsible for delivering good customer service through accurate, courteous, efficient and effective transactions.

The incumbent serves as a Research Psychologist in the Office of Survey Methods Research whose primary purpose is to evaluate the cognitive and statistical aspects of survey programs to suggest improvements and to identify statistically sound and effective methodologies.

BLS is the principal fact-finding agency for the Federal Government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics. The BLS is an independent national statistical agency that collects, processes, analyzes, and disseminates essential statistical data to the American public, the U.S. Congress, other Federal agencies, State and local governments, business and labor. The BLS also serves as a statistical resource to the DOL.

This announcement will have cut off dates on February 18, 2013; March 4, 3013; March 18, 2013; April 1, 2013; April 15, 2013; April 29, 2013; May 13, 2013; May 27, 2013; June 10, 2013; and June 24, 2013.  Qualified applicants will be sent to the hiring managers for review after each cut off date.  All applicants who apply on or before the cut off date will be reviewed and do not need to reapply after each cut off.  This announcement will close after the position has been filled, or on the last cut off date. 

This position has promotion potential to the GS-14 grade level.

This position is inside the bargaining unit.

This position will not be filled until the Department's Placement Assistance Programs have been fully utilized.

Writing samples and three professional references will be required at the time of interview.

Applications for this announcement will be accepted online by clicking the "Apply Online" button.


This position is located in the Behavioral Science Research Center (BSRC) within the Office of Survey Methods Research. The mission of the Office of Survey Methods Research is to plan and direct a continuing research and evaluation program for the Bureau that seeks to minimize major sources of survey error and to ensure the dissemination of high quality data. The primary purpose of the (BSRC)research program is to evaluate the cognitive and statistical aspects of survey programs to suggest improvements and to identify statistically sound and effective methodologies.  Duties may include but are not limited to:

1. Contributes to the design and conducts basic cognitive laboratory research to study important issues related to the survey response process - for example, factors that affect comprehension, recall, judgment, or response selection.

2. Designs and develops research plans and protocols for investigating the cognitive processes employed by respondents to formulate answers to questionnaires administered using different survey modes: for example, interviewer-administered personal visit or telephone interview, self-administered questionnaires, or computer-assisted interviews.

3. Contributes to survey design and identification of the procedural factors that affect respondent cooperation and quality of reporting. Participates in discussions concerning changing these procedures to improve reporting and data quality.

4. Analyzes data obtained in laboratory studies and field tests designed to investigate survey quality and a respondent's reporting ability. Uses qualitative and quantitative assessment methods to evaluate questions through cognitive interviews, laboratory experiments, and through the use of statistical techniques such as univariate analysis, multivariate analysis of variance, regression analysis, and factor analysis.

5. Prepares reports and makes presentations to professional societies on research results.

6. Conducts usability research to develop and evaluate software for stand-alone and web-based applications and other electronic materials.