This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:Research Ecologist

Agency:Smithsonian Institution

Job Announcement Number:14A-LG-299593-DEU-NZP

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$75,621.00 to $98,305.00 / Per Year


Monday, July 7, 2014 to Monday, July 21, 2014




Full-Time, Permanent - Federal




FEW vacancies - Washington DC, DC View Map


This position is open to all U.S. Citizens or U.S. Nationals. Note: Federal employees with permanent status or individuals eligible for special appointing authorities may also apply to Job Announcement #14A-LG-299593-MPA-NZP.



Public Trust - Background Investigation




About the Agency

This position is located at the National Zoological Park, (NZP), Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute’s Migratory Bird Center. The employee is responsible for planning and conducting original research on the ecology and conservation of migratory birds.


  • Not Required


  • No


  • Pass Pre-employment Background Investigation
  • May need to complete a Probationary Period
  • Maintain a Bank Account for Direct Deposit/Electronic Transfer
  • Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered with Selective Service.


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  • Designs and develops scientific research projects focusing on the population demography, movement dynamics (stop-over, migratory connectivity, dispersal and recruitment), behavioral ecology, population genetics and urban ecology of Neotropical migratory birds, but not excluding resident populations. 
  • Prepares scholarly publications of basic and applied research, which address important questions in the scientific field, account for previously unexplained phenomena, or represent an important validation or modification of scientific theory in the topic area.
  • Collaborates with scientific researchers from within the Zoo community and from around the world, to encourage and promote studies of interest to the Center and to aid in the survival and recovery of species and habitats that ensure the health and well-being of animals in nature. 
  • Participates in scientific meetings and symposia, develops scientific papers for presentation and corresponds with scholars and other members of the scientific community involved in the same or similar research. 


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All applicants must meet these Basic Requirements Specialized Experience:  (You must submit unofficial school transcripts in order to receive further consideration.)

Degree: biology, or a related field of science underlying ecological research that included at least 30 semester hours in basic and applied biological sciences. These hours must have included at least 9 semester hours in ecology, and 12 semester hours in physical and mathematical sciences.

In addition to meeting Basic Requirements above,You qualify for this position if you possess one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-11 level in the Federal Service or comparable pay band system.  For this position Specialized experience is defined as designing and developing scientific research projects involving terrestrial ecosystems, and preparing scholarly publications and scientific papers for presentations.

Part-time and/or unpaid experience related to this position will be considered to determine the total number of years and months of experience. Be sure to note the number of paid or unpaid hours worked each week.

Or Education: Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree or 3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree or LL.M., if related.

Or a Combination: Education and experience may be combined to meet the basic qualifications. For a full explanation of this option please see the Qualification Standards. Special Instructions for Foreign Education: If you are qualifying by education and/or you have education completed in a foreign college/university described above, it is your responsibility to provide transcripts and proof of U.S. accreditation for foreign study. For instructions on where to fax these documents, see the "Required Documents" section of this announcement.

Qualification requirements must be met within 30 days of the job announcement closing date.


Your resume will be used to evaluate your experience, education, and/or training that address the competencies below:

  1. Ability to apply advanced theories, principles, concepts and practices of fundamental or applied ecology including to migratory bird ecology, evolution and conservation practice.
  2. Knowledge of techniques in animal tracking and some level of proficiency in genetic techniques and biostatistics.  
  3. Ability to design, integrate and manage a collaborative scientific research project, including those with conservation outcomes.
  4. Ability to communicate complex technical concepts and data orally.
  5. Ability to communicate complex technical concepts and data in writing as evidenced in published peer-reviewed research.  
Applicants who meet or exceed minimum qualifications will be assigned to one of three category groups based on job-related criteria: Best Category - Meets the minimum qualification requirements and excels in most of the job related competencies above. Better Category - Meets the minimum qualification requirements and satisfies most of the job related competencies above. Good Category - Meets the minimum qualification requirements, but does not satisfy most of the job related competencies above to a substantive degree. This category rating process does not add veterans' preference points or apply the "rule of three", but protects the rights of veterans by placing them ahead of non-preference eligibles within each category. A selecting official may make selections from the highest quality category (Best Category) provided no preference eligible in that category is passed over to select a non-preference eligible in that category unless the requirements of 5 U.S.C. 3317(b) or 3318(b) are satisfied. Preference eligibles who meet minimum qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent must be listed in the highest quality category, except when the position being filled is scientific or professional at the GS-9 grade level or higher. Applicants who have not submitted a resume in the USAjobs system and/or have not answered all of the vacancy questions will not be considered for this position. Important Note: The review of your resume will determine your final rating and should provide sufficient information regarding how your education and experience relate to this position, including the major duties and qualifications criteria listed.

To preview questions please click here.


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Click on the "Apply Online" button on the upper right side of the page. Please Note:
  • You must apply for this position online through the 'Apply Online' button and submit required supplemental documents (if they are relevant to you).
  • You may submit required documents by uploading them online during the application process; OR You may manually fax required documents. Faxes are received by an automated system, not a physical fax machine. Documents that are faxed as part of the application process must be sent with the system generated cover sheet by the closing date. Documents faxed without the system generated coversheet are not retrievable and cannot be considered as part of the application package.
  • The complete application package, including any required documents, is due in the Smithsonian Office of Human Resources on the closing date of the announcement by 11:59 PM Eastern Time.


Your application package should include the following documents:
  • Detailed resume created in the USAJOBS Resume Builder.
  • Proof of Veteran's Preference - DD214 (Member 4 Copy), if you are a veteran. Additionally, applicants claiming 10-point preference must complete Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, as well as additional documentation required by the SF-15, such as a VA letter.
  • Unofficial school transcripts, You must submit unofficial school transcripts in order to receive further consideration. If selected for the position, you must provide an official transcript before appointment.
  • Proof of U.S. accreditation for foreign study, if applicable.


Linda Givens
Phone: 202-633-6307
Fax: 571-258-4052
TDD: 202-633-6409
Agency Information:
Office of Human Resources
POB 37012, 600 Maryland Avenue, MRC 517
Suite 5060
Washington, DC
Fax: 571-258-4052


At the end of the application process you will be able to create and save a PDF file that contains your responses to the assessment questions. You may save this file as initial receipt of your application. After the job announcement closes, you will receive an email from the Smithsonian with confirmation of receipt. The Smithsonian receives many applications for each job. Each application is reviewed carefully which may take a few weeks. We will send you an e-mail to update you as we go through phases of the application review process. You may also check your application status by logging into and selecting the tab "My USAJOBS;" e-mailing; or by contacting the Office of Human Resources Representative listed. Additional Information:
  • Tips on applying for Smithsonian jobs are available at
  • The Smithsonian does not pay relocation expenses.
  • The Smithsonian embraces diversity and equal employment opportunity (

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