Research Assistant Position in AI

Trustworthiness lies at the heart of current debates about generative artificial intelligence (AI). In the context of higher education, educators and researchers play a key role in designing and implementing trustworthy AI in student-centered open pedagogies. Join us in our inclusive and dynamic work environment where you are empowered to make a difference and contribute to social justice causes.


Image generated by Alexa Alice Joubin using Adobe Firefly

Desirable Skills:

     To test the hypothesis that faculty-led and evidence-based AI development and deployment enhances the trustworthiness and usability of AI, the George Washington University Trustworthy AI Initiative and Digital Humanities Institute seek to employ a research assistant who is proficient in:

  • front-end coding and web development, debugging, responsive design
  • back-end web maintenance: PHP
  • customization of commercially available AI chatbots
  • curation and formatting of proprietary dataset to train the AI
  • installation of the AI chatbot on website via API integration
  • beta-testing the AI chatbot and flagging errors
  • coding pages to load quickly
  • search engine optimization (SEO)

     The faculty has already designed an open-access web-based textbook on film studies and critical theory. The site is built on PHP which renders to HTML server-side. You will help to design and implement three new features:

  • AI chatbot tutor trained only on the textbook content to reduce “hallucination”
  • AI natural voice text-to-speech reader, such as GSpeech
  • new chapters to be added to the online textbook

    We will examine linguistic edge cases to assess the efficacy of various generative AI models within an ethical framework. For instance, Claude 3 models have outperformed OpenAI’s GPT-4 in some quantitative benchmarks, but natural language outputs have to be evaluated qualitatively. This is the challenge. 

     Prior experience is highly desirable but not required. The assistant does not have to possess all of these skills but should be a strong coder and quick learner. Opportunities will be available for further training on the job.

Desirable Qualities:

  • attention to detail
  • strong communication skills
  • creativity in problem solving
  • time management skills

Credit and Compensation

     The research assistant will earn internship or course credit (in Fall). Time commitment: Approximately 55-60 hours over 6-8 weeks in summer 2024 (with possible extension into fall 2024).

     As the project progresses, a stipend may become available. Payment may be set up on Upwork‘s milestone-based direct contract escrow system. This is a system to pay for freelancer projects securely. Payouts will be disbursed upon completion of each agreed-upon milestone.

To Apply:

     Email a cover letter and resume to Professor Alexa Alice Joubin, co-director of the Digital Humanities Institute, ajoubin@gwu.edu 

     As the inaugural Public Interest Technology Scholar, Professor Joubin is an advocate for open education resources (OER) and deploying trustworthy artificial intelligence in higher education. She is a faculty affiliate at the National Science Foundation’s Institute for Trustworthy AI in Law & Society (TRAILS) and a faculty of the GW Trustworthy AI Initiative (TAI). Learn more about Professor Joubin’s work here.

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