Usable Knowledge Associate 

Job Description 

Start Date: Immediate 

Role Type: Full Time 

Location: Flexible, US-based: Fully Remote/Virtual Team 

Who We Are:
Transcend supports communities to create and spread extraordinary, equitable learning environments. 

We fulfill this mission by focusing on two key priorities: 

  1. Supporting more communities to have far better designs: To scale up their work supporting design journeys of communities, so that more places are more successfully designing, building, and spreading extraordinary, equitable learning environments. 
  2. Making systemic change that enables innovation: To engage key actors in the field to create broader ecosystem conditions that positively impact communities on design journeys, by growing actors’ proximity to insights, voices, and evidence from work with communities and by learning from their perspectives and experiences. 

The Opportunity:
As a Usable Knowledge Associate, you will help us answer some of education’s thorniest questions: How can schools make learning fun and rigorous? How can schools provide students with the right level of autonomy appropriate to their development? What assessments most effectively gauge the evolution in students’ social emotional skills? The results of your work will be used to inspire the design of curricula, staffing, policy, and so much more both within and beyond Transcend! 

The Nitty Gritty
In this role, you will: 

  • Surface and synthesize research and best practices, drawing from various sources including: Articles from peer reviewed and professional journals covering a range of fields (e.g. education, psychology, neuroscience, sociology, adult learning, organizational theory, change management, etc.); 

High-quality resources from Transcend’s peer organizations (e.g. white papers, research summaries, videos, websites); 

Interviews and observations with school operators whose students are achieving amazing results academically, socially, emotionally, and beyond; 

Artifacts from Transcend’s work with school partners; and 

Conversations with luminary researchers and leaders in the field who are tackling similarly thorny problems. 

  • Create comprehensive and rigorous, yet concise and accessible, school-facing resources grounded in research and effective practice. Check out the “Resources section of our website for examples. Think critically and creatively about the research, the content and format of each individual resource you create, and how resources relate to each other to ensure the development of products that are compelling to users and cohesively aligned to Transcend’s existing frameworks.
  • Test the accessibility and usefulness of the resources you develop, and adapt them based on user feedback. 

Who You Are
You are deeply curious. As you go about your day, you see a million questions just begging to be answered, and when something grabs your interest, there’s no stopping you! You have a black belt in Advanced Internet Super Sleuthing; in fact, when others see a “dead end,” you see an opportunity to get creative. For you, it’s part of the thrill. And while you always get your answer, not just any answer will do—it’s got to stand up to your rigorous standards. Of course, you realize finding your answer is only half the battle. You also have to share it in ways that make sense to other people! To do this, precise and simple language, compelling visuals, and powerful organizing frameworks are your tools of choice—with them you can disentangle wicked problems, connect a dozen dots, and make the most opaque ideas crystal clear. Before you’re satisfied, a Supreme Court justice would be proud to argue your case in court: it’s got ironclad evidence, complex ideas made simple, and it’s wrapped in a narrative that would compel even the biggest skeptic. The questions you help answer have the potential to be your legacy—they will transform education as we know it! 

— Sample Day in the Life — 


  • Demonstrate a deep commitment to Transcend’s mission of transforming education, and an eagerness to add to Transcend’s culture and live into Transcend’s core values
  • Noteworthy experience reading and synthesizing complex academic research (e.g. you’ve refined research questions, conducted literature reviews to answer those questions, and have compiled and presented findings to stakeholders) 
  • A deep commitment to equity and experience considering and communicating the relationship between research findings and patterns of inequity as well as the systems of oppression causing those patterns 
  • Remarkable aptitude for looking critically at disparate information, drawing meaningful conclusions, and constructing conceptual frameworks that bring everything together 
  • Exceptional writing skills punctuated by the ability to communicate complex ideas in precise, simple, well-organized, and accessible ways 
  • Experience working in or with PK-12 education organizations as a teacher, school leader, member of a school support organization, researcher, etc. 
  • A knack for finding ways to communicate complex ideas with simplicity and grace, especially for diverse audiences of school practitioners 
  • Proven experience thriving in ambiguity and in dynamically changing contexts — proactive communicator and someone who takes initiative
  • Aptitude for internalizing the goals of a client or project and working iteratively to improve on deliverables until goals are met or exceeded
  • Strong planning and time management skills 

The Benefits
As a Usable Knowledge Associate at Transcend, you’ll have opportunities to: 

  • Develop resources (e.g. lit reviews, case studies, physical tools) that may be published on Transcend’s website and will be used with school partners as they work toward amazing results for kids 

Copyright, Transcend, 2020

  • Engage closely with Transcend’s Product & Capacity team and other amazing, diverse, and brilliant colleagues who exemplify our value of love on a daily basis 
  • Help our organization, our school partners, and our larger network play big as they iterate toward new equitable, extraordinary ‘school’ models 
  • Learn and growth professionally and personally by being continuously exposed to great thinking and ideas, rich feedback, and new experiences

Join Us! 

Transcend is an equal opportunity employer. We are building a diverse team that values diversity, equity, and inclusion.To apply, visit