[Comp-neuro] Open PhD Position: Computational Modeling and Eye Tracking in Infancy Research

Jochen Triesch triesch at fias.uni-frankfurt.de
Wed Jun 18 16:08:00 CEST 2014

An opening is available for an interdisciplinary PhD project in the group of Jochen Triesch at the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies (FIAS, http://fias.uni-frankfurt.de/de/) focusing on computational modeling and gaze-contingent eye tracking in infancy research.

Gaze-contingent eye tracking techniques, which allow young infants to exert control over the course of the experiment, are currently opening up new ways of studying infant's cognitive development [1], training their cognitive abilities [2], and hold promise for diagnosing and treating developmental disorders. We are seeking an outstanding and highly motivated PhD candidate for an exciting project in collaboration with the developmental psychology group of Prof. Monika Knopf at Goethe University Frankfurt. Additional collaborators of our lab include leading developmental psychology and cognitive science labs in Italy (Prof. Gianluca Baldassarre, Rome), and the US (Prof. Chen Yu, Indiana University, Prof. Gedeon Deák, UC San Diego).

Applicants should have a keen interest in cognitive development and hold a Master or equivalent degree in a relevant field such as cognitive science, computer science, psychology, engineering, physics, or mathematics. The candidate should have excellent programming skills (e.g. Matlab, Python, C/C++) and good analytic skills. Experience with eye tracking and knowledge in machine learning (e.g., reinforcement learning, neural networks, Bayesian models), computational neuroscience (attention and reward systems), and data analysis (time series analysis, hypothesis testing) are a plus.

The Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies is a research institution dedicated to fundamental theoretical research in various areas of science. It is embedded into Frankfurt's recently established natural science research campus. Frankfurt is the center of one of the most vibrant metropolitan areas in Europe. Apart from being an economic and financial hub, it boasts rich cultural assets and repeatedly earns top rankings in worldwide surveys of quality of living.

Applications should include a 1-2 page statement of research experience and interests, CV including publications, awards, and relevant course work, academic transcripts, and contact information for two to three references. All documents should be sent in pdf format. Send applications to application at fias.uni-frankfurt.de. We aim to fill the position during Fall 2014.

[1] Wang Q, Bolhuis J, Rothkopf CA, Kolling T, Knopf M & Triesch J. (2012) Infants in Control: Rapid Anticipation of Action Outcomes in a Gaze-Contingent Paradigm. PLoS ONE 7(2): e30884. http:dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0030884

[2] Wass SV, Porayska-Pomsta K & Johnson MH (2011). Training attentional control in infancy. Current Biology 21 (18), 1543-1547. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2011.08.004

Prof. Dr. Jochen Triesch
Johanna Quandt Research Professor
Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies
Tel: +49 (0)69 798-47531
Fax: +49 (0)69 798-47611

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