Data Scientist & Visualization Specialist, Libraries

at James Madison Libraries (view profile)
Published October 30, 2023
Location Harrisonburg, VA
Category Academic  
Job Type Full-time  
Apply Here
Education Requirements Master’s Degree or equivalent education and experience in Data Analytics/Science, Statistics, Computer Science, Operations Research, or other relevant disciplines.
Minimum Compensation in Local Currency $60,000
Maximum Compensation in Local Currency $70,000
Hourly or Salary? Salary


Position Summary Information


We are a community committed to preparing students to be educated and enlightened citizens who lead productive and meaningful lives.


To be the national model for the engaged university: engaged with ideas and the world.

Who We Are

Located in the heart of Virginia’s beautiful Shenandoah Valley, the city of Harrisonburg is approximately 120 miles from Washington, D.C. and Richmond, VA. With a population of just over 53,000, Harrisonburg is one of the most diverse communities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. JMU is a selective, public institution with a growing national reputation for offering experiences that lead to an outstanding education and inclusive environment for students, faculty and staff. The student body includes approximately 20,000 undergraduate and 1,900 graduate students, with over 1,000 full-time instructional faculty.

JMU offers thriving programs in the liberal arts, science and technology, and professional disciplines at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels. The university is committed to expanding diversity, fostering equity and inclusion, and supporting superlative teaching and scholarship. JMU has achieved national recognition for the high quality of its academic programs, focus on maintaining strong student/faculty interaction, and innovative faculty research.

General Information

James Madison University Libraries is accepting applications for a Data Scientist & Visualization Specialist. As a member of the Data Analytics Team in Libraries’ Administration, this position advances the University and the Libraries’ commitment to diversity and to student, faculty, and staff success by providing computationally sophisticated analyses and visualizations of the Libraries’ scholarly resource and academic technology data to support initiatives and decision-making within the organization, the university, and the state. In addition, the Libraries is a member of the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA), Virginia’s academic library consortium, and the Virginia Research Libraries, both of which regularly engage in data analysis projects requiring support from the Data Analytics Team.

The Libraries adheres to its Privacy Policy in working with user information.

This is a 40-hour, Administrative and Professional (AP) Faculty position working Monday through Friday with some flexibility in hours. This position is remote-optional with periodic travel to JMU for onsite training and collaboration.

The Libraries currently utilize data from several systems, including the Alma/Primo library services platform and the Canvas learning management system, as well as numerous repository, publisher, and academic technology platforms.

The Libraries particularly welcomes applicants who can enhance the inclusive excellence of our campus community, and who can demonstrate a commitment to building equitable and inclusive environments for teaching, learning, research, and service. We are committed to cultivating a welcoming place for everyone, encouraging dialogue, and celebrating diverse life experiences and perspectives. We encourage experimentation and creativity in pursuit of meaningful solutions that build on our position as core academic infrastructure for our campus community.

JMU offers excellent comprehensive benefits. Visit our Prospective Employee site to learn more about what makes James Madison University a great place to work!

Duties and Responsibilities: The Data Scientist & Visualization Specialist

  • Develops, maintains, and applies a set of methodologies for library-related data management and analysis informed by industry standards and best practices.
  • Identifies, illuminates, and mitigates the potential for systemic bias in methods, analysis, reporting, visualization, and interpretation.
  • Incorporates university and library privacy policies, as well as privacy-by-design principles into data analytics work.
  • Compiles and analyzes large data sets to create analytical reports and visualizations for a diverse set of stakeholders.
  • Collaborates with Libraries and University colleagues to determine relevant data needs and analysis tools.
  • Provides additional learning analytics and data analysis support for projects at the local, state, and national levels.
  • Conducts benchmarking with vendors, peer institutions, constituency groups, and stakeholders.
  • Participates in professional development, scholarship, and service activities, as appropriate.


The successful candidate will have:

  • Articulated ability to help foster an inclusive and equitable work environment.
  • Applied knowledge of statistical methods, data visualization, and data ethics.
  • Demonstrated experience with data modeling, cleaning, and normalization from a variety of data sources.
  • Working knowledge of one or more programming languages and related tools suitable for advanced data manipulation and analysis (e.g., Python, R).
  • Experience with data visualization software (e.g., Tableau, Power BI).
  • Excellent technological skills with the ability to quickly learn new systems and technologies.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong organizational, time-management, and collaboration skills.
  • Demonstrated commitment to data ethics, data privacy, security and equity in data analysis and application.
  • Master’s Degree or equivalent education and experience in Data Analytics/Science, Statistics, Computer Science, Operations Research, or other relevant disciplines.

Additional considerations include:

Familiarity with trends in machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies, including societal impact concerns.

Experience in using library, higher education learning, and/or business systems and data, and the types of biases common to these contexts.

Knowledge, skill, and/or experience with critical quantitative inquiry and methods.

Conditions of Employment

Employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a criminal background check.

E-Verify Notice: After accepting employment, new hires are required to complete an I-9 form and present documentation of their identity and eligibility to work in the United States. James Madison University uses the E-Verify system to confirm identity and work authorization.

Posting Detail Information

Posting Date 10/20/2023

Beginning Review Date 11/27/2023

Closing Date

Open Until Filled Yes

Proposed Starting Date

EEO Statement

James Madison University is committed to creating and supporting a diverse and inclusive work and educational community that is free of all forms of discrimination. This institution does not tolerate discrimination or harassment on the basis of age, color, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, national origin, parental status, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation or veteran status. 

We promote access, inclusion and diversity for all students, faculty, staff, constituents and programs, believing that these qualities are foundational components of an outstanding education in keeping with our mission. The university is interested in candidates whose experience and qualifications support an ongoing commitment to this core quality.