Applications are invited for a funded PhD studentship for an outstanding applicant to work on an ongoing research and development project at the Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) Lab<http://crc.open.ac.uk/aci>, School of Computing and Communications, The Open University, UK, in collaboration with UK charity Medical Detection Dogs<http://www.medicaldetectiondogs.org.uk>. The successful applicant will be required to develop innovative machine learning algorithms applied to sensor-enabled interfaces to support the work of cancer detection dogs.
Cancer detection with dogs, pioneered worldwide by UK charity Medical Detection Dogs, has been shown to have significant potential for the non-invasive secondary testing of cancer in humans, particularly for those cancers that are difficult to diagnose. To maximise the potential of cancer detection with dogs, the project aims to develop technology that can support their work and training process. In particular, the purpose of the PhD studentship is to research and develop, starting from an existing prototype, an interactive system combining sensor technology and learning algorithms to enable canine users to provide accurate and reliable responses to the screening of biological samples. More generally, this doctoral work is expected to make design and methodological contributions to the emerging discipline of ACI.
The successful applicant will have a solid background in computing, electronic engineering or equivalent. They will either have a strong background in machine learning, or will be able to demonstrate their potential to develop such skills. They will also be required to do system prototyping using a range of sensors. Throughout the research, they will work closely with cancer detection dogs and their trainers.
More broadly, the successful applicant will have an understanding of user-centred design with regards to requirements, design and evaluation, and the use of quantitative and qualitative research methods. They will work well both as a part of a team and independently. They will be a personable, respectful and sensitive person both towards humans and dogs, and will enjoy working with both.
If successful, you will do your doctoral work with the guidance of Dr Clara Mancini, Head of the ACI Lab, who will be your main supervisor. You will be based at The Open University’s main campus in Milton Keynes, UK, but frequently visit Medical Detection Dogs’ headquarters in nearby Great Horwood, in order to conduct requirements elicitation and evaluation studies.
If you have any questions, please contact Dr Clara Mancini: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
To apply, email [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]> and [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]> the following documentation:
· curriculum vitae
· a cover letter discussing your interest in and suitability for this position
· a completed application form<http://www9.open.ac.uk/mct-cc/sites/open.ac.uk.mct-cc/files/files/application_form.docx>
Applications closing date: as soon as a suitable candidate is identified
Start date: as soon as possible following appointment
Johnston-Wilder, O., Mancini, C., Aengenheister, B., Mills, J., Harris, R., Guest, C. (2015). Sensing the shape of canine responses to cancer. Intl. Congress on Animal-Computer Interaction, ACI’15, ACM Press.
Mancini, C., Harris, R., Aengenheister, B., Guest, C. (2015). Re-Centering Multispecies Practices: a Canine Interface for Cancer Detection Dogs, 33rd International ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, ACM CHI’15, ACM Press.
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