PhD scholarship in Characterization of Supra-Threshold Listening Deficits in Listeners with Tinnitus

DTU Electrical Eng
Thursday 03 May 18

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The Hearing Systems Group at DTU Electrical Engineering seeks a qualified candidate for a 3-year PhD position in collaboration with Interacoustics Research Unit (IRU), part of Interacoustics A/S one of the world's leading manufacturers of hearing diagnostic equipment.

Our research is concerned with auditory signal processing and perception, speech communication, audiology, behavioural and objective measures of auditory function, computational auditory neuroscience, environmental acoustics, and hearing-instrument signal processing. The goal of this research is to understand the functioning of the human auditory system and to provide insights that are useful for technical applications, such as speech recognition systems, hearing aids, cochlear implants, and hearing diagnostics.

The aim of this PhD project is to investigate novel behavioural an electrophysiological methods to characterize perceptual deficits in listeners with a normal audiogram and tinnitus. Tinnitus is assumed to emerge as a consequence of a reduced output from the auditory periphery, for example as a result of an audiometrically not detected hearing loss. The generation of tinnitus often coincides with a noise trauma, possibly leading to a damage of the auditory periphery. Recent studies show, that such deficits might not be detectable with current audiometric procedures. It is therefore important to characterize the perceptual deficits in this group of listeners. This PhD project combines auditory profiling, objective electrophysiological measures and computational modeling to characterize the underlying damage.

The PhD project is part of the Horizon 2020 Marie-Curie Innovative Training Network “Tinnitus Assessment, Causes and Treatments” (TIN-ACT) which provides research opportunities for 15 PhD students overall. You will become a member of an international team of researchers whose aim is to understand how basic neural mechanisms of tinnitus can be studied in animal models and human tinnitus patients, and how complementary research techniques can be applied to tinnitus.

Responsibilities and tasks
The PhD candidate will use psychoacoustic tests and electrophysiological measures to investigate behavioural performance and electrophysiological correlates in individual listeners. The candidate will work in close collaboration with Interacoustics Research Unit (IRU), part of Interacoustics A/S.

The applicant should be well-versed in some scientific programming environment (MATLAB, Octave, SciPy) and should have knowledge of signal processing (e.g. electrophysiological and/or audio) and experimental design.

Qualifications
Candidates should hold a MSc in engineering or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the MSc in engineering.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.   

Assessment
The assessment of the applicants will be made by Bastian Epp, James M. Harte, Petteri Hyvärinen, and Torsten Dau.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Associate Professor Bastian Epp, tel.:
+45 4525 3977.

You can read more about DTU Elektro on www.elektro.dtu.dk and the Hearing Systems group at www.hea.elektro.dtu.dk.   

Application
Please submit your online application no later than 31 May 2018. Applications must be submitted as one pdf file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one pdf file. The file must include: 

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to ob­tai­ning their MSc, but cannot begin before having received it.

All qualified candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

The Department of Electrical Engineering is the central department within electrical and biomedical engineering. It is our goal to ensure research and engineering training at the highest international level. The department is organized into 8 groups each covering important areas of electrical and biomedical engineering. Including PhD students we have more than 275 staff members. You can read more about us on www.elektro.dtu.dk.  

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 6,000 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society, and our 11,200 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government and public agencies.