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MRes/PhD studentship - Visual hallucinations: an EEG and non-invasive Stimulation study (VEEG-Stim study)

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Newcastle University
28 June 2012
. .
Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear
Earth, Environment & Energy

Further information

Funding and Finance
MRes/PhD studentship - Visual hallucinations: an EEG and non-invasive Stimulation study (VEEG-Stim study)

Reference Code: IA055

Closing Date: 29th June 2012

Name of the supervisor(s)

Dr J-P Taylor (lead), Institute for Ageing and Health

Dr M Baker, Institute of Neuroscience

Dr S Graziadio, Institute of Neuroscience

Prof D Burn, Institute for Ageing and Health

Newcastle Biomedical Research Unit

Duration of the award
4-year MRes/PhD studentship

Project description
Visual hallucinations are common in Lewy body dementias (LBD) but their aetiology is unclear although their occurrence may depend upon the interaction of aberrant top-down and bottom-up visual processing. Using combined occipital transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and high density electroencephalography (EEG) we propose to investigate how visual processing is altered in LBD patients who hallucinate compared to non-hallucinator LBD patients, aged controls and a disease comparator group of patients with Charles Bonnet syndrome.

The appointed PhD student will be responsible for patient recruitment, neuropsychological assessment, and carrying out the combined TMS and EEG protocol as well as performing detailed analyses on the data produced. The studentship will be based within the Institute for Ageing and Health, a large interdisciplinary Institute with a strong track record of research excellence in ageing and dementia.

Value of the Award and Eligibility
The award covers UK/EU tuition fees and provides an annual stipend at the recommended Research Council minimum (currently £13,590 per annum).

Person Specification
Candidates must have (or expect to achieve) a first or upper-second class Honours degree. For a three-year PhD, a Masters degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject is required.

Desirable criteria include prior experience of:
• Clinical dementia / ageing research
• Signal processing and/or imaging analysis methods
• MATLAB and/or having programming skills
• Statistical analyses and research writing

We particularly welcome students with a computing, engineering, physics or mathematics background given the technical aspects of the study.

How to Apply
You must complete the University's online postgraduate application form. Select "Doctor of Philosophy (Medical Sciences)” as the programme of study. Only mandatory fields need to be completed (no personal statement required) but you must attach a copy of your CV (maximum length two A4 pages) and a covering letter, quoting the title of the studentship and reference number IA055.

Closing date for applications
The closing date for applications will be the 29th June 2012. Interviews are expected to be held at the end of July.

Further Information
For further details, please contact Dr John-Paul Taylor,

Newcastle University

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