Deadline: 2016-01-25
Value of Scholarship: Bangor
Level Of Study: PhD

PhD Studentship in Motor Control: Grasp Control in Tool Use and Hand Movement Disorders



Funding amount: The studentship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a maintenance stipend in line with RCUK rates (provisional £14,254 for full time award holders in 2016/2017) per annum for 3 years and a research allowance of £750.

Hours: Full Time, commencing October 2016.

Fully funded 3 year PhD studentship in Motor Control: Grasp Control in Tool Use and Hand Movement Disorders.

Dr. Simon Watt

Applications are invited for a three-year fully funded PhD studentship in the in the Visual Space Perception lab, School of Psychology, Bangor University. The studentship will commence from October 2016 and is one of eight PhDs being offered by Bangor’s School of Psychology, funded through a combination of the ESRC Wales DTC and internal funding. Bangor’s School of Psychology was established in 1963 and now has one of the largest student cohorts in the UK and a cosmopolitan feel due to the presence of staff and students from over 20 countries. It has consistently performed exceptionally well in the UK’s annual National Student Survey and is currently ranked in the top 20 in the 2014 REF. Bangor is a friendly and affordable university town, with good transport links, located in one of the most beautiful parts of the UK.

Project

Reaching to grasp is a fundamental human behaviour. The ease with which we achieve it belies the complexity of the underlying computations, including the combination of signals from multiple sources (vision, proprioception, touch etc.). This project aims to probe these processes in tool use, and in hand-movement disorders. These situations are not only interesting in their own right, but also provide experimental situations in which hand control is naturally altered.

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The experiments will use a combination of motion capture, psychophysical methods, and patient studies. The patient studies will take place in collaboration with an orthopaedic hand surgeon from the local NHS health trust. There may also be opportunities to collaborate on neuroimaging studies with other faculty members at Bangor.

Lab: The project is part of on going research in the Visual Space Perception lab, which explores how we perceive the three-dimensional space around us, and control actions within it. The lab is housed in the School of Psychology at Bangor University, which offers access to outstanding facilities for Cognitive Neuroscience.

Requirements: Applicants are expected to have a first or upper second-class degree in experimental psychology or neuroscience and a relevant Masters qualification (e.g. psychology, neuroscience, medical sciences, engineering science). The applicant should be highly motivated and creative with strong written and oral communication skills, and have the ability to work both independently and cooperatively. Quantitative research experience is necessary, and the willingness to learn programming (e.g. Matlab) is desirable. Prior experience with motion capture would be beneficial, but is not required, as training will be provided.

Further information:

Informal enquiries may be directed to Dr Simon Watt (s.watt@bangor.ac.uk)

Residency requirements: This studentship is open to UK/EU students only. Interested students from outside the EU should contact Dr Watt to discuss other possible routes for funding.

General information: PhD students are expected to contribute to teaching in the department.

General enquiries: For administrative advice about how to apply and eligibility, please contact Everil McQuarrie: e.mcquarrie@bangor.ac.uk

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