The MARCS Institute PhD Scholarship on 'Research on Older Adults’ Multisensory Communication'

Research on Older Adults’ Multisensory Communication

Scholarship code: 2020_080_MARCS

Domestic and International Applicants

About the project

The MARCS Institute(opens in new window)Opens in a new window studies the scientific bases of human communication. Situated on four campuses, MARCS research on brain, behaviour and development encompasses such areas as how we learn language and handle foreign accents, how to program robots for human interaction, how we can enhance communication with infants, those with hearing impairments, and the elderly, and how music and dance communicate universally. We apply our work to advanced technology, biomedical engineering, and improving physical and mental health by designing electronics inspired by neural systems, building better biomedical devices, analysing heightened performance in the creative arts, and addressing impaired performance in developmental delay and sensory deficit.

The Multisensory Communication Lab at MARCS invites applications from highly motivated graduates seeking to undertake a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree to work with Prof Chris Davis and Prof Jeesun Kim on an ARC Discovery project that aims to investigate changes in perception and production of social behaviours that occur in old age. The specific research goals of the project include: constructing profiles of older and younger adults’ speech and non-speech conversation behaviours; measuring older and younger adults’ conversation-based social perception skills as well as sensory, perceptual and cognitive skills; examining the relationship between the profiles and evaluations of the various social, cognitive and sensory skills.

What does the scholarship provide?

  • Domestic candidates will receive a tax-free stipend of $30,000(AUD) per annum for up to 3 years to support living costs, supported by the Research Training Program (RTP) Fee Offset.
  • International candidates will receive a tax-free stipend of $30,000(AUD) per annum for up to 3 years to support living costs. Those with a strong track record will be eligible for a tuition fee waiver.
  • Support for conference attendance, fieldwork and additional costs as approved by the MARCS Institute.
  • Access to the extensive range of MARCS specialised equipment and laboratory facilities.
  • Additional funding to support training and equipment purchases.
  • A rich environment of support and academic expertise via supervisory panels, seminars, colloquia, international and industry collaborations.
  • International candidates are required to hold an Overseas Student Health Care (OSHC)(opens in new window)Opens in a new window insurance policy for the duration their study in Australia. This cost is not covered by the scholarship.

Eligibility criteria

We welcome applicants from a range of backgrounds, who are keen to apply their skills to the area of communication in older adults. In particular, the project is suitable for candidates with strong interests in the way that sensory, perceptual and cognitive skills may underpin social communication.

The successful applicant should:

  • hold qualifications and experience equal to one of the following: (i) an Australian First-Class Bachelor (Honours) degree, (ii) coursework Masters with at least 25% research component, (iii) Research Masters degree, or (iv) equivalent overseas qualifications.
  • have demonstrated research experience in Psychology, Linguistics, Science and Technology, and/or data analysis.
  • have a background in experimental research methods.
  • be enthusiastic and highly motivated to undertake further study at an advanced level.

Demonstrated skills in programming in Matlab and/or R is beneficial.

International applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency.(opens in new window)Opens in a new window

How to apply

Follow the step-by-step instructions on the how to apply for a project scholarship(opens in new window)Opens in a new window page.

Incomplete applications or applications that do not conform to the above requirements will not be considered.

For questions and advice about the research project, please contact the Lead Researcher;
Professor Chris Davis:

You can also contact Professor Jeesun Kim:

For questions and advice about the application process, please contact the Graduate Research School:

Applications Close 28 February 2021

Applications close at 11.59 Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST).