The PhD project will be supervised by prof. dr. Jeroen Smeets and dr. Katinka van der Kooij of the sensorimotor control group of the department of Human Movement Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The research group studies the brain mechanisms of motor control using a combination of behavioral experiments, psychophysics and computational modelling. The department of Human Movement Sciences is a very stimulating and cross-disciplinary research environment where different groups focus on the fundamental science of sensorimotor control as well as its applications in sport and rehabilitation.
In this exciting PhD project, you will investigate the influence of reward and punishment on motor learning in balance and gait adaptability tasks. You will perform several types of behavioral experiments on healthy participants using virtual reality. These experiments will be performed in close collaboration with a postdoc who will develop computational models to analyze the behavior in one of the experimental paradigms. In the final stage of the project you will perform a study on patients in a rehabilitation setting. To facilitate application of the research findings, this NWO TTW-funded project involves collaboration with companies that develop games for rehabilitation (Motekforce Link, SilverFit, Roessingh R&D) and serious games (&ranj).
• A master degree in psychology, biology, human movement science or related field.
• Strong programming skill, needed for developing experiments and analyzing data.
• Analytical and conscientious mindset.
• Experience with Unity3D and/or with working in a rehabilitation setting is a pre.
The initial appointment will be for a period of 1 year. After satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, it will be extended for another 3 years (total duration of 4 years).
You can find information about our excellent fringe benefits of employment via https://www.vu.nl/en/employment/ like:
• remuneration of 8,3% end-of-year bonus and 8% holiday allowance;
• a minimum of 29 holidays in case of full-time employment;
• generous contribution commuting allowance based on public transport;
• a wide range of sports facilities which staff may use at a modest charge.
For additional information please contact: dr. Katinka van der Kooij
Please send a cover letter (outlining your motivation and research experience, max. 2 pages), CV (max. 4 pages, including a list of publications), and the names and contact details of two referees (all combined into one PDF-file) to via email to Katinka van der Kooij.
Please mention the vacancy number and job title ‘PhD-position Dark side of reward’ in the subject line.
Application deadline: May 3rd 2018
Starting date: September 1st 2018
Any other correspondence in response to this advertisement will not be dealt with.