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  Building a Visual World: How the Brain Uses Statistical Representations

   Department of Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering

   Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Artificial neural networks, and the brains that inspired them, operate on information distributed across many nodes. This distributed information is sometimes called a representation.

In this project, you'll set out to understand how the brain uses representations of visual information by controlling the flow of information through neural circuits with optogenetic stimulation. This will allow us to examine how visual areas of the brain that compute the depth and motion of textured objects integrate the invariant representation for texture structure contained in other parts of the visual circuit.

This project will help us understand how information is transformed and used across visual areas and create new knowledge of how multiple brain areas work together to represent the visual world.

There are the following learning opportunities:

  • optogenetic control of neural circuits
  • electrophysiological recordings from populations of neurons in the visual cortex
  • psychophysical studies in humans
  • using computational models as explicit theories of human perception and neural function
  • artificial neural network design

The student who takes on this project must be comfortable conducting in vivo research in animals.

Application instructions

Please get in touch with information about your goals and interests. I'd like to know: 

  • What are your goals after the PhD and how do you think the PhD will help you reach them?
  • Are there any specific skills you want to build as a PhD student?
  • What kind of work do you like to do?
Biological Sciences (4) Computer Science (8) Engineering (12) Medicine (26)

Funding Notes

Students are expected to apply for a scholarship, but there is funding for the position with or without a scholarship.
Link to scholarship competitions:
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Zavitz, E., & Price, N. S. (2019). Understanding Sensory Information Processing Through Simultaneous Multi-area Population Recordings. Frontiers in Neural Circuits, 12.

Register your interest for this project

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