Ministry of Defence funded PhD Studentship Neurocognitive processes underpinning different aspects of mental resilience

Prof. Paul Downing, Prof. Lew Hardy, Dr. Ross Roberts Closing Date: 15th July 2013

Applications are invited for a 4 year fully funded PhD supervised by Prof Paul Downing (School of Psychology), Prof Lew Hardy, and Dr. Ross Roberts (School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences).

The studentship will start in October 2013. It includes payment of UK / EU tuition fees and a maintenance allowance of £13,726, and a research allowance of £750 per annum. All PhDs funded by DSTL are subject to MODREC approval.

Project Description

This studentship is to support an interdisciplinary project that will focus on expanding current conceptualisations of Mental Resilience to include both decision making under pressure and emotional responses to traumatic situations. The project will use functional MRI to examine the neurocognitive processes underlying these different forms of mental resilience, and will also examine how the capacity to utilise these processes predicts performance and mental well-being in military environments. The project represents a collaboration between world-leading researchers in elite human performance and in cognitive neuroscience, from two Schools at Bangor University.

The School of Psychology

The School of Psychology is amongst the oldest Psychology departments in the country, having been established in 1963. It ranks among the very best in the UK in terms of both teaching excellence and research performance.  The School ranked in the top ten in the UK for research power based on the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE). More information about the School is here:

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The School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences (SSHES) SSHES is one of the foremost schools in the UK for sport, health and exercise science research and teaching, having placed in the top ten in the previous two RAEs as well as ranking as one of the top schools in the country for teaching quality and student satisfaction. The school is internationally renowned for its research into the psychology of elite human performance in the world. It has excellent research facilities including cutting edge motion analysis equipment.

Candidate Requirements

The successful candidate will normally have a First Class Honours Degree and/or a Master’s Degree in a relevant discipline. The ability to work independently and enthusiastically with the support of a supervisor is essential. Good quantitative research skills are essential; experience of measurement development and or/brain imaging would be advantageous but not essential. Due to funding restrictions applications will be accepted from UK and EU nationals.

How to Apply

For further details on eligibility and how to apply, please visit our website by clicking the Apply link below.

Informal enquiries about the project should be directed to Prof. Downing (, and enquiries about the application process to Shanti Shanker (

Deadline – The on-line application form and accompanying documents must be submitted by Monday, 15th July 2013. Interviews are likely to take place at the end of July.

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