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Funded Masters by Research - Investigating the affect physical load has on decision-making in invasion sports

The School of Sport

About the Project

Carnegie School of Sport in partnership with Perform Better Limited are delighted to invite Masters by Research applications for a project entitled ‘Investigating the affect physical load has on decision-making in invasion sports’

The partnership between Leeds Beckett University and Perform Better UK will create unique opportunities for Master’s students to carry out research projects in collaboration with Perform Better using equipment at the Carnegie School of Sport’s new state-of-the-art strength and conditioning laboratory.

Results from the research will be used to help monitor specific performance metrics as well as further enhance and develop Perform Better’s product capabilities to assist performance coaches across the world in elite sport.

Project description
In most invasion sports, the physical capabilities of players reduce as a function of competition. High physical load (fatigue) negatively impacts physical output and technical skills, and affects anticipation and decision-making. The primary aim of this project is to examine the affect the accumulating physical load of competition has on the key cognitive functions that underpin invasion player judgments. To this end, the project will simulate the physical demands of competition and utilise the Witty SEM Reactive and Cognitive Training System. The mental load demands of competition may also be considered.

The project provides an exciting opportunity to contribute to a fast developing research area and work collaboratively with our industry partners Perform Better Limited in a high performance setting. The successful applicant will develop a variety of practical skills and have access to a range of performance analysis tools (e.g., Witty SEM Reactive and Cognitive Training System; Catapult; Sportscode; Playertek; Tobii eye tracker).

We are seeking a highly motivated student with an undergraduate degree (first or upper second class honours) in a related discipline. Prior experience working in high performance environments would be an advantage.

Related subjects
Expert Performance; Skill Acquisition; Decision Making; Physical Load; Cognitive Load; Cognitive Assessment.

Applicants are encouraged to discuss their proposals and the project with the Project Lead, Dr Jamie Poolton at

Applicants are asked to complete an application form and provide a proposal of the research to be undertaken using the criteria given below as a guide.

The proposal of the research can be up to three A4 pages in length (with references as an addition to the proposal) using type Arial 12 point.

Applicants should use the research project reference (PB1) as the subject in the email subject line when submitting their applications.

The criteria listed below will also be used in both selecting those applicants who will be called for interview and those who will be successful in securing a studentship.

The three A4 pages must include:
a) Working Title
b) Qualifications, expertise and experience relevant to undertaking study for a Master of Research
c) Knowledge of the subject area that will ensure the development of a focused line of enquiry
d) Knowledge and understanding of research methods appropriate to undertaking a Master of Research in the area of research
e) Clarity on the original contribution that the completed Master of Research will make to the body of knowledge
f) Scale and scope of the proposed research in terms of delivery within the one-year study period

An application form is available from
The deadline for applications is midnight on 18th October 2020

Funding Notes

This Masters by Research Award comes with UK/EU fees paid for one year
A laptop and office space (subject to LBU COVID arrangements) and funding to support the research project is provided
The Award is for one year and is full time
The start date is 1 February 2021

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