Germany: EBRAMUS PhD Position in Neuroscience (Music & Communication), Max Planck Institute, Leipzig

The European Initial Training Network EBRAMUS (Europe BRAin and MUSic) is offering a PhD position for up to three years at the Max Planck Institute for Human Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Leipzig, Germany) in the research group “Neurocognition of rhythm in communication”.

The successful candidate will work on the project “Facilitatory effects of temporal and rhythmic music cues in local and hierarchical syntactic processing” and conduct behavioural, ERP and fMRI research in healthy and patient (stroke, Parkinson) populations. The PhD project will investigate how and when temporal and rhythmic cues facilitate syntactic processes of various complexities during auditory language processing.

The candidate must have a Masters degree in experimental psychology, neuroscience, neurolinguistics, or neuropsychology; experience with EEG and/or fMRI techniques and an interest in combined language/music research; knowledge of research designs, statistical skills and computer programming skills (Presentation, MATLAB). Knowledge or proficiency of German is not required but a plus; candidates will be encouraged to learn German during the PhD programme. Please note the programme-specific eligibility criteria.*

The research will be conducted at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany, an internationally leading centre for cognitive and imaging neuroscience equipped with a 7.0 T MRI scanner, three 3.0 T MRI scanners, a 306 channels MEG system, a TMS system and several EEG suites. All facilities are supported by experienced IT and physics staff. The institute offers a lively, international and interdisciplinary research environment. PhD students have the opportunity to participate in the curriculum of the International Max Planck Research School.

The successful candidate will benefit from the expertise united in the EBRAMUS training network, including collaborations with network partners with relevant expertise in music and language research, implicit learning, as well as methodological expertise. EBRAMUS is a consortium of European research centres to study new perspectives for stimulating cognitive and sensory processes using music.

Applications from female scientists are particularly encouraged. Preference will be given to disabled persons with the same qualification.

Please include the following documents in your application (preferably in one PDF-file): Cover letter, curriculum vitae (format: Europass CV), names and contact details of three personal references, a description of your personal qualifications, future research interests and academic goals (motivation letter). Applications citing the code EBRAMUS/SKC should be sent to Professor Sonja Kotz (kotz[ at ] by 20 September 2010 latest as well as to EBRAMUS[ at ] (see also

For questions or informal enquiries about the post, please contact Professor Sonja Kotz (kotz[ at ]; +49 341 99402231).

* At the time of appointment (1 November 2010), candidates need to be in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of their research careers, including the period of research training, starting at the date of obtaining the degree which would formally entitle them to embark on a doctorate either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in Germany, irrespective whether or not a doctorate is envisaged. They may be of any nationality except for the German one. In the case of a candidate holding more than one nationality, he/she must not have resided in Germany during the previous 5 years. In general, no candidate is allowed to have resided or carried out his/her main activity in Germany for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to his/her appointment. Short stays such as holidays are not taken into account. In addition, candidates have to undertake a physical transnational mobility at the time of appointment or within less than 12 months before his/her appointment under the project.

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