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Research Associate - Phelps Lab
University of Texas at Austin in Austin, Texas
Date Posted 05/09/2022
Admin-Laboratory and Research
Employment Type FullTime
Application Deadline Open until filled

Job Posting Title:

Research Associate - Phelps Lab


Hiring Department:

Department of Integrative Biology


Position Open To:

All Applicants


Weekly Scheduled Hours:



FLSA Status:



Earliest Start Date:

Jul 01, 2022


Position Duration:

Expected to Continue Until Jun 30, 2023





Job Details:

General Notes

Earliest start date is July 1, 2022. Position is for one-year, end date is June 30, 2023.

Security sensitive; criminal background checks conducted on selected candidate. Hiring decision is contingent upon applicant clearing background requirements.


Loneliness is an emotionally taxing state that is a strong risk factor for mental illness, physical disease and early mortality, and yet the neural mechanisms that facilitate social connection remain relatively unknown. Non-verbal vocalization is a major means of maintaining social bonds in many species, including humans. During this position, the successful candidate will use cutting-edge whole-brain methods and behavioral analyses to elucidate the neural circuits that relate vocalization to bonding in the monogamous prairie vole, a major model of social attachment.


  • Conduct behavioral testing of animals

  • Lead and assist with rodent surgeries

  • Perfuse rodent brains for histology work

  • Data analysis and presentation

  • Professional development activities

  • Manuscript preparation, submission, and review

  • Mentor undergraduate and graduate students

  • Assist with animal colony and protocol maintenance

  • Other duties as negotiated

Required Qualifications

The candidate should hold a PhD degree (or equivalent international degree) in Biological Psychology or related discipline. The ideal candidate should have expertise in the study of mammalian vocal communication and use of prairie voles in neuroscience research. Relevant education and experience may be substituted as appropriate.

Preferred Qualifications

4+ years of Postdoctoral experience. Advanced experience with audiovisual behavioral testing paradigms. Advanced experience with analyzing whole-brain IEG datasets. Experience with intralaryngeal rodent surgeries. Experience in the use of rabies virus for transneuronal tracing.

Salary Range

$63,000 + depending on qualifications

Working Conditions

  • Uniforms and/or personal protection equipment (furnished)

  • May work around chemical fumes

  • May work around standard office conditions

  • May work around biohazards

  • May work around chemicals

  • May work around electrical and mechanical hazards

  • Repetitive use of a keyboard at a workstation

  • Use of manual dexterity

Work Shift

  • Flexible: 40 hours/week is required, and most of this time should be during normal business hours (e.g., 9:00am-5:00pm), although numbers of hours/days and days/week can be negotiated and may change depending on what projects are being pursued.

Required Materials

  • Curriculum vitae, including publications

  • Minimum of three (3) letters of reference, at least two of which must be from referees outside of the University of Texas at Austin

  • Letter of interest

  • Research statement

  • PhD verification (copy of diploma or copy of official transcript in English with "degree awarded" information)

Important for applicants who are NOT current university employees or contingent workers: You will be prompted to submit your resume the first time you apply, then you will be provided an option to upload a new Resume for subsequent applications. Any additional Required Materials (letter of interest, references, etc.) will be uploaded in the Application Questions section; you will be able to multi-select additional files. Before submitting your online job application, ensure that ALL Required Materials have been uploaded.  Once your job application has been submitted, you cannot make changes.

Important for Current university employees and contingent workers: As a current university employee or contingent worker, you MUST apply within Workday by searching for Find UT Jobs. If you are a current University employee, log-in to Workday, navigate to your Worker Profile, click the Career link in the left hand navigation menu and then update the sections in your Professional Profile before you apply. This information will be pulled in to your application. The application is one page and you will be prompted to upload your resume. In addition, you must respond to the application questions presented to upload any additional Required Materials (letter of interest, references, etc.) that were noted above.


Employment Eligibility:

Regular staff who have been employed in their current position for the last six continuous months are eligible for openings being recruited for through University-Wide or Open Recruiting, to include both promotional opportunities and lateral transfers. Staff who are promotion/transfer eligible may apply for positions without supervisor approval.


Retirement Plan Eligibility:

The retirement plan for this position is Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS), subject to the position being at least 20 hours per week and at least 135 days in length. This position has the option to elect the Optional Retirement Program (ORP) instead of TRS, subject to the position being 40 hours per week and at least 135 days in length.


Background Checks:

A criminal history background check will be required for finalist(s) under consideration for this position.


Equal Opportunity Employer:

The University of Texas at Austin, as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer , complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding nondiscrimination and affirmative action. The University is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions.


Pay Transparency:

The University of Texas at Austin will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information.


Employment Eligibility Verification:

If hired, you will be required to complete the federal Employment Eligibility Verification I-9 form.  You will be required to present acceptable and original documents to prove your identity and authorization to work in the United States.  Documents need to be presented no later than the third day of employment.  Failure to do so will result in loss of employment at the university.



The University of Texas at Austin use E-Verify to check the work authorization of all new hires effective May 2015. The university’s company ID number for purposes of E-Verify is 854197. For more information about E-Verify, please see the following:

  • E-Verify Poster (English) [PDF]
  • E-Verify Poster (Spanish) [PDF]
  • Right To Work Poster (English) [PDF]
  • Right To Work Poster (Spanish) [PDF]



Employees may be required to report violations of law under Title IX and the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act). If this position is identified a Campus Security Authority (Clery Act), you will be notified and provided resources for reporting. Responsible employees under Title IX are defined and outlined in HOP-3031 .

The Clery Act requires all prospective employees be notified of the availability of the Annual Security and Fire Safety report. You may access the 2021 report here or obtain a copy at University Compliance Services, 1616 Guadalupe, Suite UTA 2.206, Austin, TX 78701.

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