Cell-scale MRI

Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is an indispensable characterization technique, extensively used in chemical analysis, as well as in other fields (biology, physics). The imaging modality of this scheme, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), has unparalleled capabilities in varied fields, and notably in biological and medical diagnostics. In essence, MRI uses pickup coils to measure magnetic signals generated by nuclear spins within the sample (usually from water molecules within our body in the medical case). Despite its obvious usefulness, the sensitivity and resolution of the measurement coils are insufficient to explore cellular-scale signals. Over the past decade, localized defects in diamond, namely nitrogen-vacancy (NV) color centers, have emerged as a promising platform for magnetic sensing. In short, the NV spin is sensitive to external magnetic fields, and can be readout optically, e.g. using a camera. While magnetic sensing can be relevant to many different applications, it has been demonstrated also in the context of MRI signals, and in certain cases achieved improved sensitivity and resolution compared to the standard MRI approach.
In this proposed project, led by the Prawer group from UoM, we will develop an integrated diamond chip suitable for deployment in a diamond-based MRI system, aimed at detecting MRI signals on the cellular level. Based on an optical magnetic microscope concept (see Figure 1), we will optimize the various aspects of the system for the cellular MRI goal: As can be seen below, the discrete component parts of such a system are well known. However, integration of all the components on a single chip which would allow for easy deployment in biological environments, has not yet been accomplished. This project, based on nanofabrication techniques developed at UoM, will aim to for such integration and early demonstration of sensitivity in in-vitro operation.

Figure 1: Custom-built Wide-field magnetic imaging microscope. The sample is placed on the surface of a diamond chip, which is implanted with a high density thin layer of NV centers near the surface. The diamond is attached to the cover-slip using immersion oil which is glued to the holder. Optical pumping green laser is incident through the bottom-polished side of the diamond surface using the objective in EPI mode. Coherent MW-field manipulation, which is created by an MW antenna, is located near the diamond surface containing the NV layer. The NV fluorescence passes through the diamond, the cover-slip and the dichroic mirror and is then imaged onto a camera using the objective and a tube lens.

The lead PhD candidate will:

• Optimize diamond chip in terms of thickness, either improving imaging resolution using ultrathin diamond chips (pioneered by the Prawer group), or thick diamond slabs allowing for side illumination (thus reducing potential adverse effects of illumination on the samples.

• Optimize NV center layer, in terms of quantum coherence properties, density, and depth. Through the expertise of the Prawer group we will consider approaches including ion implantation, delta-doping and overgrowth, surface termination and more.

• Optimize sensing protocols, based on commonly used MRI sequences and experiments performed using NVs. Study the effects of hyper-polarization schemes for enhanced sensitivity, in the context of realistic samples (e.g. might not be beneficial in scenarios involving fast diffusion). For example, a novel low magnetic field hyper-polarization protocol was recently introduced by us.

Figure 2: schematic of the low-magnetic field hyper-polarization scheme, named rNOVEL (refocused NOVEL), as it combines polarization transfer under the resonant Hartmann-Hahn condition with strong dynamical decoupling pulses.

 

Year 1: UoM – optimize the diamond substrate, nanofabrication and NV integration

Year 2: HUJI – learn and implement the MRI sensing techniques relevant for cellular MRI

Year 3: UoM – construct the system and perform initial measurements

 

Supervision Team:

UoM Prof Steven Prawer: s.prawer@unimelb.edu.au

School of Physics, Faculty of Science, The University of Melbourne

https://physics.unimelb.edu.au/home

HUJI Prof Nir Bar-Gill: bargill@phys.huji.ac.il

The Racah Institute of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

https://bargill.phys.huji.ac.il/

HUJI co-supervisor Prof Alex Retzker: retzker@phys.huji.ac.il

The Racah Institute of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

How to Apply:

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements. For information on applying for this project, please see here. Applications should be sent to Professor Steven Prawer.


Canine and feline leishmaniasis in Israel, its relationship to human leishmaniasis, co-infections, risk factors and drug resistance.

This joint PhD project will be based at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, with a 12 month stay at the University of Melbourne.

Supervision Team: Professor Gad Baneth (Hebrew University of Jerusalem); Professor Rebecca Traub and Dr Vito Colella (University of Melbourne)

Project description: The leishmaniases are a group of diseases caused by Leishmania species which inflict three disease forms in humans; cutaneous, mucocutaneous and the fatal visceral leishmaniasis. Almost all species of Leishmania are zoonotic and have animal reservoirs, including the three species known to cause disease in Israel, Leishmania infantum, Leishmania tropica and Leishmania major, all transmitted by sand flies. The dog is the main reservoir for L. infantum and can also harbour L. tropica and L. major infections. Domestic cats have also been documented to be infected with these species. Furthermore, co-infections with other vector-borne pathogens have been shown to influence the course of Leishmania infection in dogs and cats, and may therefore be important risk factors for the establishment and progression of this infection and further dissemination to other animals and humans. Such co-infections include ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, mycoplasmosis, anaplasmosis, hepatozoonosis and viral infections. These agents, as well as leishmaniasis, are either a potential threat to establishing in Australia, or have already become endemic in it. The aim of the PhD project will be:
1. To map Leishmania spp. infection in dogs and cats in Israel and to evaluate environmental risk factors for this infection and the influence of co-infection of the disease.
2. To study drug resistance in Leishmania isolates from animals in Israel, as a risk factor for the spread of the disease. The Baneth lab has described and characterized resistance to allopurinol, the main drug used for treatment of canine leishmaniasis worldwide.

The Israel-based PhD student will perform a country-wide survey of canine and feline leishmaniasis and collect samples and demographic data to define risk factors, during his/her first phase of studies (12 months). In the project’s second phase, the student will study the detection of co-infections at UoM using the samples collected in Israel, testing for co-infections and their influence using the newly developed metabarcoding system at UoM (12 months). The third final 12-month phase of the study will be performed at the Hebrew U and include evaluation of the different risk factors for leishmaniasis, its association with the human disease using data on notifiable diseases from the Israeli Ministry of Health, and analysis of infection for drug resistance using molecular techniques developed in the Baneth lab.

How to Apply

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements. For information on applying for this project, please see here. Applications should be sent to Professor Gad Baneth.

References: 1. Baneth, G., Yasur-Landau, D., Gilad, M., Nachum-Biala, Y., 2017. Canine leishmaniosis caused by Leishmania major and Leishmania tropica: comparative findings and serology. Parasit Vectors 10, 113.; 2. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Ng-Nguyen, D., Wilcox, S., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2019a. Assessment of a metabarcoding approach for the characterisation of vector-borne bacteria in canines from Bangkok, Thailand. Parasit Vectors 12, 394.; 3. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Ng-Nguyen, D., Wilcox, S., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2019b. A novel metabarcoding diagnostic tool to explore protozoan haemoparasite diversity in mammals: a proof-of-concept study using canines from the tropics. Sci Rep 9, 12644.; 4. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2020. A Host-Specific Blocking Primer Combined with Optimal DNA Extraction Improves the Detection Capability of a Metabarcoding Protocol for Canine Vector-Borne Bacteria. Pathogens 9. 5. Colella V, Nguyen VL, Tan DY, Lu N, Fang F, Zhijuan Y, Wang J, Liu X, Chen X, Dong J, Nurcahyo W, Hadi UK, Venturina V, Tong KBY, Tsai YL, Taweethavonsawat P, Tiwananthagorn S, Le TQ, Bui KL, Watanabe M, Rani PAMA, Annoscia G, Beugnet F, Otranto D, Halos L. 2020  Zoonotic Vectorborne Pathogens and Ectoparasites of Dogs and Cats in Eastern and Southeast Asia. Emerg Infect Dis.;26(6):1221-1233.


Novel metabarcoding diagnostics to safeguard against the incursion of emerging and novel canine and feline vector-borne zoonoses in Australia and Israel.

This joint PhD project will be based at the University of Melbourne, with a 12 month stay at Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Supervision Team: Professor Rebecca Traub and Dr Vito Colella (University of Melbourne); Professor Gad Baneth (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

Project description: Canine and feline vector-borne diseases (CVBDs) transmitted by ticks, fleas and biting-flies, are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in companion animals. Some of these pathogens are also responsible for several well-recognized infectious diseases that are capable of being transmitted to humans (termed ‘zoonoses’), throughout the globe. In recent years, CVBDs have emerged at accelerated rates owing to increased movement of pets, exacerbated by suboptimal efficacies of anti-parasite formulations, incursions of human dwellings into previously sparsely populated habitats, and climate change, that have permitted previously exotic vectors and their pathogens to establish in new environments. This has been particularly evident in Israel (Baneth et al., 2017) and more recently Australia (https://www.agric.wa.gov.au/ehrlichiosis). Although biosecurity pathways may appear rigorous, there are several limitations, including diagnostic, that impact on risk-mitigation strategies for exotic CVBDs entering Australia and Israel. Current diagnostic methods only target a limited number of specific pathogens and are unable to detect or identify the many exotic or novel vector-borne pathogens emerging at accelerated rates globally. Early detection and recognition of these pathogens is crucial to mitigate incursion and establishment of these VBDs in Australia and Israel.

The aim of this PhD project will be to:
1. Design a portable, metabarcoding diagnostic tool based on nanopore sequencing technology, capable of highly accurate, rapid and cost-effective detection and characterisation of all known canine, and feline vector-borne parasitic and bacterial diseases in real-time.
2. Validate the accuracy and precision of this metabarcoding diagnostic tool using positive-control samples or samples experimentally seeded with known quantities of targeted disease agents.
3. Verify and compare the diagnostic test parameters of the metabarcoding diagnostic tools to traditional ‘reference’ diagnostic assays using samples from ‘high risk’ Canidae and Felidae in Australia (feral dogs, feral cats, foxes) and Israel (stray dogs, wild foxes, wolves, jackals, and feral cats).

Aim 1 will be carried out by the PhD student at UoM under Prof Traub and Dr Colella’s guidance. Prof Traub’s laboratory has strong track-record and expertise in the development and validation of diagnostic assays, in particular, next-generation sequencing-based metabarcoding methods (mNGS) for pathogen detection (Huggins et al., 2019a, b; Huggins et al., 2020). Following completion of Aim 1 and part of Aim 2 (estimated 15 months), the student will be hosted by Prof Baneth’s group at HUJ for the next 12 months, as Prof Baneth’s laboratory has access to archived library of genomic DNA and clinical samples from a broad range of pathogens otherwise unattainable in Australia, where they will complete Aim 2 and part of Aim 3. The final 9 months of the PhD will be spent back in UoM completing Aim 3 (using archived samples at Prof Traub’s lab) and finalizing thesis submission.

How to Apply

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements. For information on applying for this project, please see here. Applications should be sent to Professor Rebecca Traub.

References: 1. Baneth, G., Yasur-Landau, D., Gilad, M., Nachum-Biala, Y., 2017. Canine leishmaniosis caused by Leishmania major and Leishmania tropica: comparative findings and serology. Parasit Vectors 10, 113.; 2. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Ng-Nguyen, D., Wilcox, S., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2019a. Assessment of a metabarcoding approach for the characterisation of vector-borne bacteria in canines from Bangkok, Thailand. Parasit Vectors 12, 394.; 3. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Ng-Nguyen, D., Wilcox, S., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2019b. A novel metabarcoding diagnostic tool to explore protozoan haemoparasite diversity in mammals: a proof-of-concept study using canines from the tropics. Sci Rep 9, 12644.; 4. Huggins, L.G., Koehler, A.V., Schunack, B., Inpankaew, T., Traub, R.J., 2020. A Host-Specific Blocking Primer Combined with Optimal DNA Extraction Improves the Detection Capability of a Metabarcoding Protocol for Canine Vector-Borne Bacteria. Pathogens 9. 5. Colella V, Nguyen VL, Tan DY, Lu N, Fang F, Zhijuan Y, Wang J, Liu X, Chen X, Dong J, Nurcahyo W, Hadi UK, Venturina V, Tong KBY, Tsai YL, Taweethavonsawat P, Tiwananthagorn S, Le TQ, Bui KL, Watanabe M, Rani PAMA, Annoscia G, Beugnet F, Otranto D, Halos L. 2020  Zoonotic Vectorborne Pathogens and Ectoparasites of Dogs and Cats in Eastern and Southeast Asia. Emerg Infect Dis.;26(6):1221-1233.


Cross-linguistic Semantic and Syntactic Representation

This joint PhD project will be based at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, with a 12 month stay at the University of Melbourne.

Supervision Team: Dr Omri Abend, Hebrew University of Jersualem; Dr Lea Frermann, University of Melbourne

Project Description:

The technological and theoretical importance of cross-linguistic applicability in semantic and syntactic representation has long been recognized, but achieving this goal has proved extremely difficult. The project will make progress towards a definition of a semantic and syntactic scheme that can be applied consistently across languages, by building on two major bodies of work:

  1. At the lexical level, we will build on the expanding work on mapping the semantic spaces of different languages [17, 18, 19]. Despite considerable success and interest of the research community in these methods [20], and their value for downstream applications, such as the automatic compilation of a multilingual dictionary, the developed approaches suffer from making simplistic assumptions as to the nature of the mapping between the semantic spaces of different languages [21].
  2. At the sentence level, we will build on the Universal Dependencies scheme for syntactic representation [22], and the UCCA scheme [23] for semantic representation. Both approaches build on linguistic typological work, and have been applied to a number of languages. However, the schemes remain coarse-grained in their categories, and the relation between the sentence and lexical level remains mostly unexplored.

Studying Cross-linguistic Alignment and Divergence Patterns through Parallel Corpora: The development of the Universal Dependencies (UD) and UCCA annotation schemes provides a basis for statistical in-depth studies of cross-linguistic syntactic divergences based on data from parallel corpora. This constitutes an improvement over traditional feature-based studies that treat languages as vectors of categorical features (as languages are represented, e.g., in databases such as WALS or AutoTyp). However, existing studies are mostly based on summary statistics over parallel corpora, such as relative frequencies of different word-order patterns, and do not reflect fine- grained cross linguistic mappings that are very important both for linguistic typology and practical NLP applications. For example,this methodology cannot directly detect that English nominal compounds and nominal-modification constructions are often translated with Russian adjectival-modification constructions or that English adjectival-modification and nominal-modification constructions routinely give rise to Korean relative clauses.

Preliminary work in Omri’s lab has manually word-aligned a subset of the Parallel Universal Dependencies corpus collection and conducted a quantitative and qualitative study based on it. The proposed project will not only extend the analysis to additional language pairs and to the use of UCCA categories, but also refine the representation with finer-grained distinctions, based on other sentence level schemes, such as AMR [24]. Moreover, the project will extend the analysis to include differences in the lexical semantics of the two languages, using an induced mapping between the distributional spaces of these languages.

Richer Mappings of Distributional Spaces across Languages. A complementary effort to studying the semantic mappings across languages by aligning parallel corpora, is aligning the vector space representations induced from monolingual data in each language. We will go beyond current approaches that attempt to find a global mapping of distributional spaces, mostly in terms of orthogonal linear transformations between the spaces. Instead, we will adopt a non-linear approach, based on topological data science theory.

The project will also seek to study the relation between syntactic and lexical differences between languages, with the goal of understanding how both types of differences shape the geometry and topology of the embedding spaces of different languages.

How to Apply

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements. For information on applying for this project, please see here. Applications should be sent to Dr Omri Abend.

References

[17] Tomas Mikolov, Quoc Le, and Ilya Sutskever. Exploiting similarities among languages for machine translation. 09 2013.
[18] Mikel Artetxe, Gorka Labaka, and Eneko Agirre. A robust self-learning method for fully unsupervised crosslingual mappings of word embeddings. pages 789–798, 01 2018.
[19] Alexis Conneau, Guillaume Lample, Marc’Aurelio Ranzato, Ludovic Denoyer, and Hervé Jégou. Word translation without parallel data. arXiv preprint arXiv:1710.04087, 2017.
[20] Sebastian Ruder, Ivan Vuli´c, and Anders Søgaard. A survey of cross-lingual word embedding models. Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, 65:569–631, 08 2019.
[21] Anders Søgaard, Sebastian Ruder, and Ivan Vuli´c. On the limitations of unsupervised bilingual dictionary induction. 05 2018.
[22] Joakim Nivre, Marie-Catherine de Marneffe, Filip Ginter, Yoav Goldberg, Jan Hajiˇc, Christopher D. Manning, Ryan McDonald, Slav Petrov, Sampo Pyysalo, Natalia Silveira, Reut Tsarfaty, and Daniel Zeman. Universal dependencies v1: A multilingual treebank collection. In Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC’16), pages 1659–1666, Portorož, Slovenia, May 2016. European Language Resources Association (ELRA).
[23] Omri Abend and Ari Rappoport. Universal conceptual cognitive annotation (ucca). In ACL (1), pages 228–238, 2013.
[24] Laura Banarescu, Claire Bonial, Shu Cai, Madalina Georgescu, Kira Griffitt, Ulf Hermjakob, Kevin Knight, Philipp Koehn, Martha Palmer, and Nathan Schneider. Abstract meaning representation for sembanking. In Proceedings of the 7th linguistic annotation workshop and interoperability with discourse, pages 178–186, 2013.


Scalable Computational Cognitive Models of the Bilingual Lexicon

This joint PhD project will be based at the University of Melbourne, with a 12 month stay at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Supervision Team: Dr Lea Frermann, University of Melbourne; Dr Omri Abend, Hebrew University of Jersualem

Project Description:

Learning a second language (L2) is a major cognitive effort, yet humans are able to reliably acquire languages in addition to their native language (L1) with remarkable success, and decades of research have revealed intricate shifts in conceptual and linguistic representations caused by second language acquisition (SLA). This project will leverage machine learning (ML) and  natural language processing (NLP) methods, as well as the availability of large-scale naturalistic data sets of learner language, in order to investigate the structure and development of the bilingual lexicon. We will expose established models of SLA to large corpora of native and learner language. This project has a dual nature: First, it will contribute novel insights to the validity of different SLA models by exposing them to diverse and naturalistic data, and testing them on a larger scale. Secondly, we will utilize our findings to inform cross-lingual transfer of NLP models, i.e., the automatic adaptation of a model trained on one language to a different one.

Scalable Models of Lexical and Conceptual Representations in SLA. We will draw on recent developments in distributional and contextual language modelling, and incorporate mechanisms of lexical structure and development in SLA derived from established psycholinguistic models of bilingualism . We will evaluate our models on a broader scale than previously done, with the aim of drawing more robust conclusions, and separating universal phenomena from language pair-specific ones. We will test our models on predicting controlled behavioral data as well as on predicting naturalistic learner data (observed in L2 essays).

Informed Priors for Cross-lingual Model Transfer. We will incorporate our insights on global and language-pair specific shifts in lexical representations as priors in cross-lingual model transfer, hypothesizing that they will enable more effective transfer models. Cross-lingual domain adaptation, where models trained on one language (typically data-rich) are transferred to a different language (typically data-poorer), is an important, yet open, research problem in NLP. We will experiment with ways of incorporating priors in order to constrain and guide the adaptation process in an informed way.

How to Apply

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements. For information on applying for this project, please see here. Applications should be sent to Dr Lea Frermann.

 

 


Diamond sensor for Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS)

Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), and radicals in general, play a fundamental role in a broad range of chemical and biological processes, usually as catalysts and mediators of various reactions. For example, ROS are crucial as catalysts in clean energy production, such as batteries and light-harvesting complexes, and are instrumental in cellular and inter-cellular disease processes, such as inflammation. Detecting and quantifying ROS dynamics is a challenging task, as these molecules are usually short-lived due to their catalytic behavior. This is usually achieved by using spin traps or modified fluorescence markers, which act as indirect indications of ROS activity. However, due to the need to introduce them into the biological system and since they are essentially side-effects of the reactive process, the resulting measurements can affect the process itself, and their quantitative analysis is limited. The proposed project is based on the fact these radicals have free spins, and therefore introduce magnetic noise into the environment. Such noise can be detected and characterized by the diamond-NV platform, through various control schemes referred to as noise spectroscopy.

Figure 3: Schematic for noise spectroscopy schemes based on CPMG and DYSCO: green indicates a laser pulse, orange indicates a π or π/2 pulse, while yellow and blue indicate microwave-pulse blocks composed of 4π pulses with the denoted phases (in which ϕ is a function of the block number).

In this project we will realize a biologically compatible noise spectroscopy system for studying ROS dynamics:

• Develop and optimize noise spectroscopy schemes relevant for ROS measurements, such as we have demonstrated recently using continuous and pulsed control. For this purpose, we will benefit from a collaboration with Uri Banin of the Chemistry Dept. at HUJI, who provides us with specifically designed nano-particles that controllably create ROS as a function of optical illumination (using 405nm light).

• Optimize diamond substrate for these measurements in terms of various parameters, including diamond structure and nanofabrication, NV integration, optical coupling.

• Construct an integrated, biologically compatible ROS sensor, and demonstrate measurements of ROS concentration as a function of controlled stimuli. The proposed project will combine the expertise of the Prawer group in terms of the diamond structure and NV integration, with the noise spectroscopy expertise of the BarGill group (including the collaboration with the Banin group).

 

Joint Supervision

UoM Prof Steven Prawer – School of Physics, Faculty of Science, The University of Melbourne

Website: https://physics.unimelb.edu.au/home

HUJI Prof Nir Bar-Gill – The Racah Institute of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Website: https://bargill.phys.huji.ac.il/

HUJI co-supervisor Prof Alex Retzker – The Racah Institute of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hebrew University of Jerusalem


Decoding the rhythms of cognition

This project investigates the representational content of brain rhythms: the actual information contained in each of the cycles of cortical excitability that the brain produces during perception. Better understanding the content of rhythmic fluctuations in physiology and behavior will allow us to elucidate the underlying neural architecture. To address this aim we will apply multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) techniques to time-resolved EEG recordings to investigate the contents of each cycle in a given oscillation.

This this project will commence at HUJI, where the graduate researcher will be trained by PI Landau in neural oscillations, the possible neural mechanisms that might underlie them, and the psychophysical and neuroimaging paradigms that can be applied to study them. They will design and collect the first psychophysical and EEG data, and then transfer to UoM for Year 2, where they will be trained by PI Hogendoorn in MVPA analysis of EEG data. Finally, in Year 3 the candidate will return to HUJI to finalise their thesis and integrate the experimental findings with the state-of-the-art in our understanding of brain rhythms under the supervision of PI Landau.

 

Joint Supervision

Dr Hinze Hogendoorn – Senior Research Fellow, Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, The University of Melbourne

Website: timinglab.org

A/Prof Ayelet Landau – Assistant Professor, Dept of Cognitive Sciences and Psychology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Website: landaulab.com


The rhythm of predictive coding 

This project investigates the role of brain oscillations in the mechanisms involved in predictive coding. Predictive coding is an influential framework of cortical organisation. However, the canonical predictive coding model treats cortical processing as a stationary process: input remains constant and the sensory hierarchy converges on a minimum-error computational solution. Of course, the real world is dynamic and ever-changing, and existing predictive coding models could not handle time-variant input. However, earlier this year, PI Hogendoorn proposed an extension to the canonical predictive coding framework that not only allows predictive coding to process time-variant input, but that would allow also the network to compensate for the delays that inevitably accumulate during neural transmission (Hogendoorn & Burkitt, eNeuro 2019). This project investigates how this might be achieved at the neural level.

The project will commence at UoM, where the graduate researcher will be trained by PI Hogendoorn in the theoretical basis of predictive coding and related concepts and start collecting psychophysical and EEG data. They will transfer to HUJI after year 1 to receive additional training in time-frequency analyses of both behaviour and EEG signals in the lab of PI Landau, and learn to identify the signatures of rhythmic neural mechanisms in those signals as well as carry out further analyses. In the final year of candidature, the graduate researcher will return to UoM to finalise the thesis and integrate the empirical work with the theoretical framework of predictive coding under the guidance of PI Hogendoorn.

 

Joint Supervision

Dr Hinze Hogendoorn – Senior Research Fellow, Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, The University of Melbourne

Website: timinglab.org

A/Prof Ayelet Landau – Assistant Professor, Dept of Cognitive Sciences and Psychology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Website: landaulab.com


How to Apply

REGISTER YOUR INTEREST

Applicants for Jerusalem-Melbourne Joint PhD (JM-JPhD) projects should:

  • Identify a project of interest
  • Register their interest with the project supervisor based at the University of Melbourne, including the following information:
    • Name, contact details
    • Joint PhD project of interest
    • Cover Letter, CV and Transcript
    • Any supporting documentation

Note: All applicants are required to meet the entry requirements for a PhD at both partner universities to be considered.

The successful candidates will be funded by either UoM or HUJI. This funding includes a full scholarship and mobility support. Eligible candidates for the Hirsh and Olga Taft Scholarship will be automatically considered.

CHECK ADMISSION CRITERIA

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here, including visa and English language requirements.

FINANCIAL SUPPORT

All participants have access to UoM living allowance support. Scholarships are awarded for 3 years, with the possibility of 6 months extension. All participants receive a UoM tuition fee waiver for up to 4 years.