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Two PhD positions on Visual Attention

The Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology is offering two 4-year PhD projects on visual attention (subject to one year probationary period). You will be working in the team led by Professor Chris Olivers. One ...

10 months


De Boelelaan, Amsterdam, Noord-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
40 uur
€ 2222 - € 2840 per maand


The Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology is offering two 4-year PhD projects on visual attention (subject to one year probationary period). You will be working in the team led by Professor Chris Olivers. One project focuses on fMRI techniques to determine the relationship between population receptive field size and visual search behaviour, in collaboration with the SPINOZA imaging centre directed by Professor Serge Dumoulin. The other project focuses on EEG techniques to uncover the bottom-up and top-down signals for peripheral vision. You will be part of a diverse, supportive, and internationally renowned group of researchers investigating multiple aspects of visual attention and memory, using a range of advanced techniques. Project descriptions are available on request from c.n.l.olivers@vu.nl.

• The PhD student will conduct, under supervision, research into the relationship between, and the mechanisms behind, peripheral vision and attention in visual search;
• The PhD student will learn state of the art techniques, and follow necessary courses within local and national graduate schools;
• Promote team work with researchers working on similar projects;
• Present at national and international conferences;
• Write high standard international peer-reviewed publications, as well as a PhD thesis complying with university standards.


• An MSc degree in cognitive psychology, artificial intelligence, neuroscience, biomedical sciences or related field, with a *demonstrable* interest in psychophysics and/or the (electro)physiology of the visual system;
• Demonstrable technical skills, including proficient programming. Experience with packages like Matlab/R/Python is an advantage. For the EEG project, EEG or MEG experience is an advantage (but not required);
• Proficient English writing and presentation skills;
• Ability to work in a multidisciplinary research team.


In the Netherlands, PhD positions are salaried jobs. You can find information about our employment conditions at www.workingatvu.nl.
This includes:
• 4-year research period, subject to one year probationary period (this means that a 1-year contract is followed by a 3-year contract after satisfactory assessment);
• additional remuneration of 8.3% end-of-year bonus and 8% holiday allowance;
• solid pension scheme (ABP).

The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel, and amounts € 2222,00 gross per month in the first year up to
€ 2840,00 in the fourth year (salary scale 85, PhD) based on a full-time employment.

Additional information

General information about the VU and the Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology and the Section Cognitive Psychology can be found on the websites: www.vu.nl or www.vupsy.nl/research-cognitive;
For specific information about the project, contact Prof. Chris Olivers. For specific information about the procedure, contact Ms Barbara Goudriaan.

To apply for this position, please send your letter of application, curriculum vitae, BA and MSc grade list, the name and contact details of two references, and if finished, your MSc thesis electronically, before the 9th of November 2017 to: Barbara Goudriaan. Late applications may be still accepted.

Any other correspondence (e.g. from recruitment agencies) in response to this advertisement will not be dealt with.


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU) is a leading, innovative and growing university that is at the heart of society and actively contributes to new developments in teaching and research. Our university has ten faculties, and provides work for over 4,500 staff and scientific education for more than 23,000 students.

The Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences (FBM) at VU Amsterdam is unique in the wide field of behavioural and health sciences for combining the disciplines of psychology, education theory and human movement sciences. The faculty contributes to a better understanding of the way behaviour and movement are caused and can be influenced so as to promote physical and mental health and improve performance.