Postdoctoral Fellow Positions

The Adolescent Development Lab at University of Alberta, led by Dr. Yao Zheng, has openings available for up to 2 full-time postdoctoral fellows. The starting date can be as early as May 2022 but negotiable. The initial appointment is for one year, renewable up to three years depending on performance and grant funding. Salary will be commensurate with experience.

We are also recruiting one full-time postdoctoral fellow sponsored through the China Scholarship Council (CSC), contingent upon its successful application. Dr. Zheng will collaborate with the selected candidate to develop the CSC application (deadline in March/April 2022). The starting date can be as early as July 2022 but negotiable. The appointment is for two years in agreement with the CSC policy, but renewable up to a third year depending on performance, grant funding, and CSC permission. Salary will be commensurate with experience.

The successful candidates will help coordinate research projects that investigate adolescents’ and young adults’ daily experiences and well-being. Primary responsibilities include overseeing project progress, conducting data analysis, preparing for conference presentations and scientific manuscript writing for publication in peer-reviewed journals, and supervising research assistants. Postdoc fellows will have opportunities to work on daily parent–adolescent dyadic data, adolescent ecological momentary assessment data, as well as twin daily diary data (prior experience required). There will also be opportunities to work on conventional multi-wave longitudinal data, EEG data, and data from measurement burst designs.

Required Qualifications

  • A doctoral degree in developmental psychology, human development and family studies, quantitative psychology, applied psychology, educational psychology, or a related area
  • Strong background/interests in adolescent socioemotional development and diary research
  • Strong analytical skills such as structural equation modeling and multilevel modeling using Mplus, R, and/or SAS
  • Evidence of independent scholarship, strong interpersonal and communication skills, and outstanding academic English writing skills

Preferred Qualifications

  • Prior 1st author publication experience at peer-reviewed journals
  • Experience with collecting and analyzing diary and other intensive longitudinal data
  • Experience with dynamical systems, control system, GIMME, Graphic VAR, and longitudinal network analysis are especially welcome
  • Experience of lab management and data collection management
  • Experience with applied longitudinal modeling (e.g., growth curve, random-intercept cross-lagged, propensity scores, network analysis, mixture modeling)

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter (2-page maximum) that describes your relevant training and career goals, up-to-date CV, research statement including your training goals for the position (3-page maximum), up to 3 representative publications, as well as the name and contact information of 3 references in ONE pdf file to yao.zheng@ualberta.ca with “Postdoc Application” in the subject line. Review of the applications will begin on December 15th until the positions are filled. For more information, please contact Dr. Zheng (yao.zheng@ualberta.ca).

We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.

The University of Alberta is committed to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workforce. We welcome applications from all qualified persons. We encourage women; First Nations, Métis and Inuit; members of visible minority groups; persons with disabilities; persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity and expression; and all those who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas and the University to apply.


Graduate Students

Dr. Yao Zheng in the Department of Psychology at University of Alberta regularly recruits graduate students interested in pursuing Ph.D. in Developmental Science to join the Adolescent Development Lab. We aim to recruit at least one graduate student to start in Fall 2022 (departmental application deadline December 1st).

Dr. Zheng’s research focuses on the influences of family and peer processes that shape different developmental trajectories of problem behaviors (e.g., antisocial behavior, substance use, depression) from late childhood through adolescence to young adulthood (approximately age 10 to 25), particularly with the application of advanced quantitative methodology (e.g., mixture modeling, multilevel modeling, time series analysis) at multiple levels of analysis (e.g., cognitive, affective, behavioral) and timescales (e.g., days, years) in different ecological contexts (e.g., family, school, community). One major research interest along this line of research examines gene-environment interplay in the development of problem behaviors using multiple twin samples.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor or Masters background in Developmental Psychology or related areas (e.g., education, human development) with research experience in data collection, coding, analyses, and/or writing up scientific papers
  • Strong research interests in child and youth development, particularly problem behaviors, mental health and psychopathology, as well as quantitative modeling and computation
  • Strong English communication and writing skills
  • Prior experience in statistic analytic methods or coding and programming

Strong applicants could have the opportunity for departmental, university, provincial, or national (e.g., tri-council) fellowship or scholarship. The department however will guarantee financial support for both tuition and stipend through either Teaching Assistant or Research Assistant as supported by faculty research grant. There are potential opportunities to collaborate with other faculty in the Developmental Science area, other areas (e.g., Social and Cultural Psychology), or in other departments (e.g., psychiatry) with different research foci (e.g., internalizing problems) and/or research methods (e.g., neuroimaging, machine learning). Applicants who are interested in Dr. Zheng’s work methodologically (i.e., developmental continuity and change) yet overlap with other faculty’s substantive research areas (e.g., transition to young adulthood, well-being) could be considered for co-supervision.

To Apply

Interested applicants can formally apply through the departmental application portal (https://www.ualberta.ca/psychology/graduate-studies/index.html). GRE is NOT required, but TOEFL/IELTS is required for students whose previous degree is taught in languages other than English. The application deadline is December 1st. Applications will be evaluated by the departmental admission committee and Dr. Zheng separately, and will be compared with other applicants, for potential admission. Shortlisted applicants will be contacted for virtual interviews in December/January.

Please contact Dr. Zheng (yao.zheng@ualberta.ca) for any questions on application. Prospective students of under-represented populations (e.g., sex, gender, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation) are particularly encouraged to apply.

Thank you for your interest.


Please note that due to the capacity of the Adolescent Development Lab, Dr. Yao Zheng currently is NOT accepting any new undergraduate students for honors program or independent research.