Identifying Neurobiological Markers of High Mental Performance and Optimal Decision Making in Individuals and Teams

About this scholarship

TWO PhD SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE to investigate neurocognitive correlates of individual and team decision-making and performance in complex environments.
The Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Research Hub (CSN-RH) and the Centre for Workplace Excellence (CWex) at the University of South Australia are calling for applications for two fully-funded PhD scholarships within in a research project entitled ‘Identifying neurobiological markers of high mental performance and optimal decision making in individuals and teams’ (funded by the Research Network for Undersea Decision Superiority, the Defence Science and Technology Group, Department Of Defence and the University of South Australia).

These topics represent a unique opportunity for the merit-selected PhD candidates to work on an industry-partnered project to examine biologically based predictors of performance in real-world tasks with defence applications. Furthermore, these topics will establish a track record in research within an open science framework (OSF) using advanced techniques for EEG acquisition and analysis, and sophisticated statistical modelling. Finally, the PhD candidates will conduct experiments involving state-of-the-art undersea decision-making simulation environments.

The Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Research Hub (CSN-RH) and the Centre for Workplace Excellence (CWex) provide engaging and supportive research training environments founded on a commitment to high impact, collaborative world-class quality research. The two research centres provide a range of excellent developmental opportunities and learning experiences for PhD students. The CSN-RH facility includes state-of-the-art equipment for measuring brain activity, including both high-density and mobile EEG recording systems, two eye-trackers and equipment for transcranial magnetic stimulation.  

The University of South Australia is based in Adelaide, which has been consistently listed in the world's top 10 most liveable cities. Adelaide is famous for its range of arts and cultural events, thriving food and bar culture, and scenic greenspaces.  The city offers convenient public transport and affordable living options.

Available PhD scholarships are for two topics:
1) Identifying neurocognitive markers of optimal performance on a complex cognitive task relevant to undersea decision-making
and

The merit-selected PhD candidate will run and analyse EEG-based experiments (together with the project team) to examine individual differences in performance on an undersea control room simulation task.

Students should hold or be close to completion of an undergraduate Honours or a Masters by Research degree cognitive neuroscience, cognitive science, psychology, or similar, and be interested in applying their research skills to address real-world problems in applied neuroscience.* Other selection criteria apply, please make contact for further details.

Topic lead researchers: Professor Matthias Schlesewsky and Professor Ina Bornkessel-Schlesewsky, Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Research Hub (CSN-RH)

2) Identifying the combined role of EEG-based brain activity and behavioural strategies in predicting team decision making

The merit-selected PhD candidate will investigate brain-to-brain synchrony (EEG-based synchronous vs. asynchronous activity) among team members as a predictor of team performance in a complex environment.

Students should hold or be close to completion of an undergraduate Honours or a Masters by Research degree in psychology, management, business, statistics, and be interested in applying their research skills to address real-world problems in applied psychology and management.* Other selection criteria apply, please make contact for further details.

Topic lead researchers: Dr. Ruchi Sinha, Centre for Workplace Excellence, UniSA Business, and Dr. Maarten Immink and Professor Matthias Schlesewsky, Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Research Hub (CSN-RH)

*Highly motivated students with other backgrounds may also be considered for both scholarships.

Eligibility

-commencing candidates

-Australian Citizen, Australian Permanent Resident 

Applicants must meet the entry criteria for the award of a Doctor of Philosophy at the University of South Australia

Value

$28,092 per year for 3 years

How to apply and closing date

Apply online

The closing date for applications is 31/05/2020.

Contact:

Applicants for Topic 1 should email Professor Matthias Schlesewsky (matthias.schlesewsky@unisa.edu.au) or Professor Ina Bornkessel-Schlesewsky (ina.bornkessel-schlesewsky@unisa.edu.au) with their CV and a brief statement of interest, or alternatively, for any enquiries or discussion.

 Applicants for Topic 2 should email Dr. Ruchi Sinha (ruchi.sinha@unisa.edu.au) with their CV and a brief statement of interest, or alternatively, for any enquiries or discussion.