Contract Type:Temporary/Fixed term
Contract Term:Part time
R-LINCS PhD Research Studentship
Applying the self-reference effect to improve children’s mathematical problem solving
Educational curricula focus on developing numeracy skills and competent skills have been identified as necessary for technological and economic innovation. This project will examine how the materials used when teaching children can influence learning. It will focus on the impact of self-referencing on children’s mathematical learning. Previous research has shown that when information concerns the self (e.g., hearing one’s own name, or seeing one’s own purse), it attracts attention and is difficult to ignore or forget. Thus, including information about the self in educational materials should engage the learner and allow more cognitive resources to be available during processing.
Many children experience difficulties learning mathematical skills, but this could potentially be reduced by using strategies that improve attention and processing such as self-referencing. The current project aims to test this proposal by exploring the efficacy of self-referencing in maths processing in children across a range of ages and abilities, and to disseminate relevant findings and strategies to those working in education practice.
The successful candidate will express an interest in educational applications of psychological theory, demonstrate experience of research design, and show competent reading of the research literature. You should have experience of using standard software for experimental design (e.g. E-Prime, PsychoPy) and data analysis (e.g., Excel, SPSS, R). You must be enthusiastic about science and working with children, and able to interact well with schools and organisations. You will need to have good written and oral communication skills, as well as excellent time-management skills.
Each PhD studentship provides a package valued at around £75,000. This includes a fully funded tax free stipend of £14,553 per year over 3 and a half years, tuition fees as well as a travel and equipment budget. Applications will be sought for specific R-LINCS studentship titles and the best (up to) four candidates meeting our quality threshold will be offered the studentship they applied for.
The Abertay Graduate School
Abertay’s PhD students are located in the Abertay Graduate School (http://www.abertay.ac.uk/discover/academic-schools/graduate-school/) and have access to our dedicated study and social spaces – a forum in which you can meet, work and learn with other researchers and postgraduates from across the University. We provide training and professional development opportunities to our postgraduate community, and offer help with funding applications, placement opportunities, teaching support, public engagement and outreach activity.
You will be expected to undertake limited teaching duties of no more than 70 hours a year. We provide training on this activity and it is a valuable part of career development.
Informal enquiries should be directed to Janet McLean (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Sheila Cunningham (email@example.com).
A related Masters level qualification is desirable but not essential, but candidates must have, or expect to obtain a first class or upper second-class honours degree in a relevant discipline as detailed above. For applicants who are non-native speakers of English, the University requires IELTS of 6.5 (with no band less than 6.5) or an equivalent qualification accepted by the Home Office.
The Studentships are available for an October 2017 start for a period of up to 3.5 years.
Applicants should submit through HIREWIRE submitting a personal statement of application detailing which project you are interested in, why you are interested in undertaking this project and a CV. (NOTE: HIREWIRE ONLY ALLOWS YOU TO SUBMIT ONE DOCUMENT, PLEASE MERGE YOUR SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS).
If you are selected for interview you will be required to complete an online Research Student Application Form which includes the submission of a research proposal. Guidance on how to write the proposal can be found here: https://www.abertay.ac.uk/studying/postgraduate-research-degrees/ , under 'how to apply'. Applicants are also encouraged to contact Janet McLean (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Sheila Cunningham (email@example.com) for advice on developing a proposal prior to submitting it.
The closing date for submissions is midnight on Sunday 9 July 2017. Submissions after this date will not be considered. Interviews are likely to be held during the weeks 31 July – 11 August 20
Closing date:09 July 2017
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