PhD Studentship (3 years) Optimisation of a Speech-In-Noise test for Auditory Fitness for Duty
College of Health and Life Sciences, Aston University
About the Project
Applications are invited for a three-year Postgraduate studentship, supported by the College of Health and Life Sciences, to be undertaken within the Cognition and Neuroscience Research Group at Aston University. The successful applicant will join an established experimental group working on optimizing a speech recognition in noise test that is developed to assess the auditory fitness for duty of personnel with excessive occupational noise exposure. The studentship is offered in collaboration with Amplivox Ltd.
The position is available to start in July 2022, subject to negotiation.
Auditory fitness for duty (AFFD) is defined as the possession of hearing abilities sufficient for safe and effective job performance. The challenges that hearing loss poses for personnel in the military or police forces could detrimentally impair the efficiency of communication and the completion of their duties.
Audiometry may not provide enough face validity in the current AFFD assessment to reflect the listeners’ routine work environments or their listening challenges. The Audiology Department at Aston University collaborates with the UK’s largest audiometry manufacturer Amplivox to adapt a speech-based test for AFFD assessment. We are looking for an enthusiastic PhD student to take on this research. The primary tasks include to parameterize and optimize the procedures of the current version of the speech test, and design new test conditions with high face validity.
Applicants should have a degree in audiology, hearing science, psychology, audio engineering, auditory neuroscience, or a related discipline. Programming experience in Matlab, Python, or similar programming languages is required. The project will use psychophysical approaches as primary method. Prior experience of psychoacoustic experimentation, speech perception test, or audiological test is highly preferred.
The successful applicant should have been awarded, or expect to achieve, a Masters degree in a relevant subject with a 60% or higher weighted average, and/or a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree (or an equivalent qualification from an overseas institution) in audiology, hearing science, psychology, audio engineering, auditory neuroscience, or a related discipline. Preferred skill requirements include knowledge/experience of computer programming in Matlab, Python, or similar programming languages, statistical analysis, scientific writing, and good communication skills.
This studentship includes a fee bursary to cover the home/EU fees rate, plus a maintenance allowance of £15,609 in 2021/2 (subject to eligibility).
Overseas applicants may apply for this studentship but will need to pay the difference between the ‘Home’ and the ‘Overseas’ tuition fees. Currently the difference between ‘Home’ and the ‘Overseas’ tuition fees is £13,750 in 2021/2. As part of the application you will be required to confirm that you have applied for, or, secured this additional funding.
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Deadline to respond: Jul 2022