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Two jobs in auditory neuroscience

The Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing in the Physiology Department of
the University of Cambridge has two positions available in

Auditory Temporal Processing and Perception

Applications are invited from scientists interested in temporal processing
in the auditory system from the cochlea to the cortex with emphasis on the
relationship of temporal processing to auditory perception. At the CNBH,
temporal processing includes everything from physiological recording in the
brainstem to brain imaging in the cortex. The research is integrated through
time-domain modelling of the perceptual consequences of the temporal
processing. We have two specific jobs at present. The details are presented
below in the initial flyers sent out last month when the positions first
became available.  This announcement provides the formal details. 

Applicants should possess, or expect soon to possess, a Ph.D or equivalent
degree in physiology, psychoacoustics,  physics, engineering or computer
science.  Ideally, they should have post-graduate training in Hearing
research and should understand computer synthesis and analysis of complex

Successful applicants would be expected to undertake research on temporal
aspects of auditory perception and its relationship to the physiology of the
auditory pathway from the cochlea to auditory cortex. Topics of particular
interest are the physiology of temporal integration, and the perception of
temporal asymmetry, temporal regularity and temporal dispersion of transients.

The appointment will be for three years  in the first instance, and the post
may, subject to the availability of funding, be renewed for a further period
or periods.  Appointment will be on the salary scale of 16,286 to 24,479
with the starting salary dependent upon age and experience.

The closing date for applications is Friday, 3 December, 1999. 

For further information concerning the terms and conditions of employment,
contact Ms. F. Duncan, the administrator of the Physiology Department, at
the address above, or ring her on +44 1223 333826.

Applicants should send a letter of application supported by a full
curriculum vitae and the names and addresses of three referees to:

Roy Patterson
Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing,
Physiology Department, University of Cambridge,
Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3EG, U.K.

Email submission is acceptable and should be sent to

Information about the research of the CNBH is provided on the web site 

The CNBH is supported by a programme grant and a co-operative group grant
from the UK Medical Research Council.

======== Position 1 ============

"Temporal Processing in the auditory system from cochlea to cortex"

The project involves 
1) development of a physiological gammachirp auditory filter (Irino and
Patterson, 1997).
2) measurement and analysis of the responses of the primary projection
neurons in the cochlear nucleus and inferior colliculus to sounds with
varying temporal asymmetry (Patterson, 1994a,  JASA) and varying temporal
regularity (Yost et al., 1996; Patterson et al., 1996).
3) development of a physiological version of the auditory image (Patterson,
1994b) in the form of a two-dimensional array of dynamic time-interval
histograms that will stabilise the repeating neural patterns produced in the
auditory nerve by temporally regular sounds.
4) development of an auditory Mellin transform to extract source shape
information from the auditory image independent of the size of the source or
the pitch of the sound (Irino and Patterson, 1999, Eurospeech99).
The successful candidate would need to be involved in at least two of these
areas and could be involved in all four.

The position arises from a Cooperative Group Grant awarded by the Medical
Research Council to provide core funding for collaborative auditory research
in the Cambridge area. (Roy Patterson and Ian Winter, Physiology Dept.,
Cambridge; Brian Moore, Experimental Psychology Dept., Cambridge; Ray
Meddis, Psychology Dept., Essex).

============== Position 2 ================

 A time-domain model of loudness for stationary, dynamic and multi-source sounds

 Certain complex sounds produce the perception of multiple, simultaneous
sources.  Such sounds present difficult problems for traditional, spectral
models of hearing, particularly when the perceived sources are associated
with components that fall in the same frequency region. More recent,
time-domain, models of hearing emphasise the auditory images produced by
sounds and construct simulated images in which features of different sources
appear in separate regions of the simulated auditory images. The task now is
to extract the features and demonstrate that auditory images can be used for
source segregation and analysis. We propose to begin with the problem of
segregating complex tones and clicks from background noise, and to quantify
the relative loudness of these components. 
 The project involves (a) empirical determination of the partial loudness of
the perceived sources in two sets of test stimuli (damped/ramped sounds and
iterated rippled noise), (b) improving the accuracy of peripheral processing
in the auditory image model (AIM) as part of the modelling programme at the
Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing, (c) calculating the partial loudness
of the each perceived source from vectors in the auditory image, and (d)
refining and developing the model by comparing the calculated partial
loudness with the empirically measured partial loudness.

This position arises from a Component Grant awarded by the Medical Research
Council for the development of 'A time-domain model of loudness for
stationary, dynamic and multi-source sounds.' (Roy Patterson, Physiology
Dept., Cambridge; Brian Moore, Experimental Psychology Dept., Cambridge; Ray
Meddis, Psychology Dept., Essex).


Roy D. Patterson
Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing
Physiology Department, University of Cambridge
Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3EG

phone   44 (1223) 333819        office
phone   44 (1223) 333837        lab
fax     44 (1223) 333840        department
email   rdp1@cam.ac.uk  
email   roy.patterson@mrc-cbu.cam.ac.uk