The University of South Carolina (UofSC), supported by the National Science Foundation, is pleased to announce the Institute in Measurement MEthodology in Rural STEM Education – Postdoctoral Research Fellowships (IMMERSE-PRF). This professional development and research capacity-building training is directed to Rural researchers who are finishing (graduating by May 2024) or have recently finished (less than 2 years post-doctorate). The goal of IMMERSE-PRF is to be an innovative postdoctoral training experience that builds on the experiences and connections of IMMERSE. It will connect postdoctoral scholars with the thriving scholarly community of IMMERSE Fellows, 40 transdisciplinary rural researchers across the U.S. The aims of the institute are threefold: a) to produce relevant lines of inquiry in STEM education where rurality is central to the research, b) to undertake STEM education studies that utilize rigorous measures of key constructs, and c) to execute sophisticated analyses as part of the design of high quality and informative research. Specifically, IMMERSE-PRF Scholars will obtain the skills to complete high-quality, publishable studies and fundable lines of inquiry that employ fellowship-developed research design and analytical skills to advance rural STEM education research. Scholars will also be provided extensive individualized training and mentoring from IMMERSE core faculty on self-selected research projects and engagement in professional development activities to prepare them for their careers (e.g., teaching experience).

Our team at the Child Development Research Center in the College of Education is currently involved in numerous ongoing rural STEM education research projects, including early childhood development, rural STEM workforce development, teacher working conditions and retention, and STEM access for rural youth with disabilities. Exposure to multiple projects will provide IMMERSE-PRF Scholars substantial autonomy and choice in selecting and undertaking self-directed research studies that best align with their research interests and professional goals. Our interdisciplinary environment (i.e., faculty across education, psychology, social work, public health, and medicine) and focus on measurement science involving sophisticated research methods (e.g., invariance testing) and, at times, large-scale analyses will elevate the rigor of rural STEM education research across multiple lines of inquiry and disciplines.

Selected scholars will receive an annual salary of $70,000 for two years, up to $4,000 per year for travel to conferences, and up to $2,000 per year for statistical and research training. The desired start date is no later than June 1, 2024. Review of applications begins Monday, November 30, 2023. Please see the job posting at USC Jobs ( for further information. Education research experience is not required. Interdisciplinary rural researchers are encouraged to apply. U.S. citizenship or permanent residency status is required.

Contact Dr. Angie Starrett via email ( if you have any questions.