Research Scientist (Learning Moonshot)

Barcelona
Learning – Research
Full-time
Alpha 
Alpha is an innovation startup based in Barcelona, established by Telefonica in early 2016. Alpha’s mission is to create Moonshots: audacious projects that use radical ideas and breakthrough technology to address some of the biggest challenges in society. Moonshots are designed to affect 100 million people or more, be a force for good on the planet, and grow into impactful businesses.
We are building a team to work on ground-breaking and life-changing projects in the health and, now, learning sectors. More Moonshots are to come in a range of exciting domains.

Alpha Learning Moonshot 
Alpha Learning’s mission is to radically improve human learning. To achieve that, we are building an Artificial Intelligence Tutor that grows with humans throughout their lives to teach them the skills they need to succeed in the future.
 
While our world has drastically changed these past 100 years, our education system has not kept up. Many children currently in primary school will ultimately be working in jobs that do not yet exist today. Yet they are being ill equipped, lacking the fundamental skills and abilities required to thrive in the future of work. Meanwhile, rapid population growth coupled with a shortage of teachers has created critical challenges for the education system on a global scale.
 
At Alpha, we believe that advances in artificial intelligence and cognitive science are finally unlocking the potential for us to create and deliver tailored and highly engaging learning experiences at a massive scale. To turn this potential into reality, we are partnering with world class academics, technologists, companies, and professionals from around the globe.

Scope 
We are looking for a post-doctoral researcher who can build the theoretical underpinnings of our Learning Engine and help us transition that research into practical solutions. The ideal candidate has a deep understanding of the cognitive science of learning and a well developed point of view on how to leverage that understanding to create a pedagogical framework enabled by artificial intelligence. Your work will inform the Learning Moonshot engineering team’s work to build an engine to deliver tailored learning experiences in response to assessment of learners’ cognitive and affective states. 

Responsibilities 
- Plan, organise, coordinate, direct and participate in scientific research aligned with the moonshot’s milestones, projects, and deliverables.
- Structure and conduct short and long term independent research projects utilising the Alpha team
- Seek out, develop, and execute collaborative research projects with external partners
- Translate research project results into actionable insights, directions, and solutions 
- Work with strategy, product, and engineering teams to inform development

Requirements
- PhD in Cognitive Science, Psychology, Learning Sciences, or a related field
- Demonstrable experience (e.g. publications) involving at least two out of the three areas: educational psychology, intelligent tutoring systems and computational cognitive modelling.
- Other relevant topics include knowledge representation, developmental psychology, memory and emotions in learning, machine learning, computational linguistics, and human-computer interaction
- Experience in preparing grant applications and structuring project plans
- Ability to effectively communicate research results to drive implementation & impact
- Detailed understanding of the following topics in learning is extremely helpful: knowledge representation, tutoring, developmental psychology, text comprehension, inference generation, problem solving, memory, emotions, computational linguistics, artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction, and learning technologies.
- Basic programming skills
- Good interpersonal skills and team player with a positive attitude and an entrepreneurial spirit. 
- Must speak and read/write English, Spanish a significant benefit.

Alpha Perks
We provide all the necessary help and perks to make your life at work and outside of work fun and comfortable all year round, like:
- Benefits package (health, pension, life)
- Casual dress code and open culture
- Flexible work schedule
- High social impact with world-wide reach
- Free daily catering for lunch and large stocked kitchen
- Weekly ‘Lunch and Learn’ sessions with guests talking about the most varied world topics
- Work and learn with some of the very best minds in innovation and ideation
- A friendly and open environment
- A democratic team culture that encourages everybody to contribute ideas and acquire new skills
- Based in Barcelona, right by the beach!