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Infant processing of emotion expressions in the context of their own affective states

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Monday, January 13, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Position Details
Applications are invited to apply for one Department of Psychology, University of York funded PhD studentship under the supervision of Dr. Elena Geangu. The position starts on September 28th, 2020 and will be fully funded.

The department of Psychology is among the world’s top psychology departments, excelling in both teaching and research. We pride ourselves in providing a supportive and vibrant learning environment, which offers our students every opportunity to meet their personal development goals.

Project Background
Inferring people’s emotions from the expressions of their faces and voices is a major developmental challenge that children have to master. The existent evidence converges to suggest that infants develop the ability to process emotion expressions in a rather short period of time after birth. Less is known, however, about the processes through which infants develop this ability. This project investigates the proposal that infants’ own emotions and how well they are able to regulate them influences how they attend to and process the information around them, including emotional expressions.

For further information and some recent publications on the topic, please check out https://pure.york.ac.uk/portal/en/researchers/elena-geangu(eaf33650-b423-45c5-b5ea-de02eb3f1c83).html.

PhD position
The PhD candidate will focus on:
- establishing the role of emotional reactivity and regulation for the development of emotion expression processing in infancy
- investigating the effect of emotion regulation development on infants’ neural responses to people’s emotion expressions

Some of the key questions of the PhD project:
- How does the increased arousal elicited by different common life events influence infants’ neural sensitivity to emotion vocal and facial expressions?
- How do the characteristics of infants’ emotional reactivity at different points during the first two years of life influence parents’ behavioural responses and their emotional expressivity?

The PhD candidate will be responsible for all aspects of the research project, that is for designing experiments, conducting behavioral and neuroimaging experiments, data analysis, and the dissemination of results.

Essential requirements:
- Strong 2.1 BSc (Hons) or equivalent degree in psychology, (cognitive) neuroscience, or a related discipline
- Solid knowledge of statistical methods
- Experience with empirical work in psychology and/or (cognitive) neuroscience
- High motivation and strong interest in the topics of developmental social neuroscience
- Strong writing and communication skills

Desirable requirements:
- Knowledge in Matlab coding (or a related language)
- Experience in running EEG, psychophysiology, and behavioral experiments with young children and infants
- Training or practical experience in analyzing EEG, psychophysiology, and behavioral data
- Knowledge of advanced EEG and psychophysiology analysis techniques

Candidates should initially show their interest apply by contacting Dr. Elena Geangu () prior to sending a full application.

If after contacting Dr. Geangu a candidate wishes to pursue an application, please complete the application process on the University of York website link below.

The deadline for applications is on January 13th, 2020 with interviews to be held on February 13th, 2020.

Funding Notes

Funding for this position covers: (1) home/EU fees and (2) £15,096 stipend each year in return for 100 hours teaching without additional payment. Overseas students are welcome to apply but must make up the difference in fees between home and overseas rates.

How good is research at University of York in Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 24.90

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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