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"ACM SIGCHI General Interest Announcements (Mailing List)" <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 22 Nov 2012 18:04:40 +0100
Christoph Hölscher <[log in to unmask]>
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Christoph Hölscher <[log in to unmask]>
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Dear list moderator,
I am sending this to the announcements list as the new group is offering
graduate student opportunities alongside posts for PostDocs and more
senior staff.

Please distribute to colleagues who might be interested in joining this
group. Thank you!

I apologize for cross-posting.

ETZ Zurich ­ Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich

Applied Cognitive Science & Design Research Opportunities at ETH Zurich
Looking for contributors ranging from doctoral students to Senior Post-Docs

Starting in February 2013, a new research group will be established at ETH
Zurich with a focus on Applied Cognitive Science, especially linking
cognitive science research to interactive systems and architectural
design. The group is hosted in the Behavior section of the Department of
Humanities, Social and Political Sciences, with strong links to computer
science and architecture. Christoph Hölscher, Professor of Cognitive
Science, will lead the group.

The new group is open to researchers with a background in cognitive
science, psychology / behavioral research, computer science, interaction
design or architectural design, among others.

Expressions of interest from graduate students and young researchers are
now being received. Depending on level of experience, post-doctoral
researchers can join the group either as Post-Docs (Assistent) or on a
lecturer/senior-lecturer level (Oberassistent). This is your unique
opportunity to shape the identity of a new research lab bridging
behavioral and design disciplines.

A key aim for cognitive science reaching out to design disciplines is to
offer insight for designers into the cognitive processes, capabilities and
limitations of humans as cognitive agents. We support designers in putting
themselves into the perspective of the user. We generate theories of
cognitive processes to underpin design work, and we develop empirical
methods for studying interaction and learning with environments, devices
and artifacts. An emphasis will be on Virtual Reality simulation and
visual attention (eye-tracking). This approach ties in with evidence-based
design movements in architecture and human-computer interaction.
Furthermore, we will contribute to the curricular development by
generating cognition and design courses for students and practitioners in
design disciplines.

We envision an international group of researchers with broad interest in
applications and a passion for connecting research themes and methods
across disciplinary boundaries. We will translate basic research into
applied projects, including established as well as new collaborations with
industry partners in spatial and computational domains (e.g., Frankfurt
Airport, Google).

Example applications:
- Wayfinding in public buildings and urban environments. Modeling the
impact of architectural features and cognitive abilities on movement
decisions, orientation and building usability. Bridging architectural
theory, design and cognition.
- Modeling human cognition in emergency situations, e.g. decision making
and route choice in fire evacuation; understanding the handling of tools
under stress (e.g. icons/instructions on emergency equipment)
- Usability of tailored software for complex workplaces (e.g. stock market
brokers and analysts) and research on information filtering, visual
attention and reasoning in such highly dynamic work environments
- User-centered design of adaptive interfaces (e.g. Search Engines), user
modeling for adaptive systems based on spatial and device-interaction data
- User interaction with mobile devices, mapping, location-based services
(e.g. Google Maps, building on established collaboration with Google)
- Modeling online and real-world movement of individuals and groups,
inferring psychological states and needs
- Computational modeling of user behavior and user cognition with ACT-R or
other cognitive architectures, agent models of individual and group
movement behavior.
- Develop design guidelines based on cognitive science research, develop
design support tools for CAAD / CAD
- Investigate the use of sketches & gestures as external representations
in design
- Organization of work processes, design workspaces, innovations in the
design studio
- User Models, GOMS, Visual Attention models; Simulation of movement
- Understand the interplay of user and artifacts as complex systems in the
tradition of Hutchins ³Cognition in the Wild²

ETH Zurich will supply Virtual Reality simulation and experimentation
facilities, using both a CAVE and an HMD based setup, including
eye-tracking capabilities. A behavior observation and usability lab will
be created to support research on HCI themes ranging from complex
workplace software to mobile applications. The group will have their own
lab-based eye-tracking facilities for these purposes as well as access to
mobile eye-trackers. The department also hosts the ETH Decision Science
lab with 30+ networked computers, allowing the running decision making
experiments in social settings.

at any level should bring a strong methodological background into our
group; you should be familiar with some the following:
- Planning and conducting behavioral experiments
- Advanced statistical techniques (multi-variate, mixed models,
time-series, sequence mining, etc.)
- Spatial analysis of buildings (e.g. space syntax) and/or collaboration
with architects on such analyses
- Collaboration on the design of virtual buildings towards empirical
- Computational modeling of behavior / cognition, e.g., ACT-R or other
cognitive architectures, agent modeling, traffic flow modeling
- Virtual Reality techniques (CAVE, HMD setups), simulation of
architectural spaces / CAD modeling, planning and implementing lab-based
navigation experiments based on VR software (WorldViz Vizard or other)
- Eye-tracking with stationary or mobile systems
- Qualitative and formal analysis of decision making tasks based on
human-computer interaction approaches (cognitive walkthrough, cognitive
task analysis, simplified GOMS modeling), in domains of spatial cognition
and/or interaction design
- Preparation of manuscripts for publication in international journals /
at conferences

The new group will strive for a balanced mix of technical skills across
the academic levels. Especially candidates at a post-doc level are
expected to share responsibilities in establishing and running the new
labs for the group.

ETH Zurich provides a world-class research and teaching environment,
welcomes fresh and independent thinking, and offers competitive salaries
suitable even for a premium location like Zurich.

New members of the group can start as early as February 2013 or whenever
you are available.

If you are interested in contributing to Applied Cognitive Science and
shaping our new group, please get in touch. Ideally include a statement of
interest and a short CV.

Email: [log in to unmask] or [log in to unmask]


Dr. Christoph Hoelscher
Center for Cognitive Science, University of Freiburg, Germany
email: [log in to unmask] office phone ++49 / 761 / 203-4937

private email: [log in to unmask]

mobile phone: ++49 / 172 / 2822 036
* Never send a monster to do the work of an Evil Scientist  - B.B. *

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