American Institutes for Research

Individual/Independent Consultant - Physics Item Writer

Job Location US-Remote | US-VA-Arlington | US-TX-Austin | US-NC-Chapel Hill | US-CA-Oakland | US-MA-Waltham
Job ID
Job Location
United States
Independent/Individual Consultant


AIR is currently seeking to establish an ongoing relationship with new independent consultants to support our item writing process. Item writing involves developing stimulus passages with dependent multiple-choice items, as well as sets of independent or discrete multiple-choice items. This is a flexible, online contract position that could range from 5–10 hours per assignment with approximately 4–6 assignments per year. This is a great opportunity to earn some extra money, build your item development skills, and focus on introductory college physics content knowledge. AIR will contract directly with the Independent Consultants under a consulting purchase order agreement.


About AIR:


Established in 1946, with headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, AIR is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit institution that conducts behavioral and social science research and delivers technical assistance to solve some of the most urgent challenges in the U.S. and around the world. We advance evidence in the areas of education, health, the workforce, human services, and international development to create a better, more equitable world.



AIR’s commitment to diversity goes beyond legal compliance to its full integration in our strategy, operations, and work environment. At AIR, we define diversity broadly, considering everyone’s unique life and community experiences. We believe that embracing diverse perspectives, abilities/disabilities, racial/ethnic and cultural backgrounds, styles, ages, genders, gender identities and expressions, education backgrounds, and life stories drives innovation and employee engagement. Learn more about AIR's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategy and hear from our staff by clicking here.


AIR is contracted by the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) to develop the items and publish test forms for the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), a high-stakes nationally administered assessment. Developing test items is a long process that involves our internal content editors, technical writers, technical and fairness reviewers, and test development reviewers before the items are available to be field tested and eventually become scored on tests. To support this process, AIR contracts with a cadre of Independent Consultants to serve as writers and reviewers, who are typically faculty at colleges and universities.


Qualifications for being an item writer for the physics portion of the test include the following:

  • PhD in Physics
  • At least one-year Physics teaching experience at the introductory level (AP Physics or with undergraduate populations), with a preference for more

Once you submit your CV, finalists for the position will be contacted by email. The next stage of the application involves signing a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), and then submitting a writing sample based on instructions we will provide.




AIR requires all new hires to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or receive a legally required exemption from AIR, as a condition of employment.  AIR will ask candidates to verify their vaccination status only after a conditional offer of employment is made.  Applicants should not provide information about their vaccination status or need for exemption prior to receiving a conditional offer of employment from AIR


Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the U.S. on a full-time basis. Employment-based visa sponsorship (including H-1B sponsorship) is not available for this position. Depending on project work, qualified candidates may need to meet certain residency requirements.


All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability.


AIR adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


#LI-TB1 #LI-Remote


AIR maintains a drug-free work environment.


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