Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

Post-doctoral position at University of Granada: Apply for an Athenea3i-2018 Research Fellowship at the Department of Experimental Psychology

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    30/10/2018 13:00 - Europe/Brussels
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions COFUND
    Spain, Granada
    International Research Projects Office
    Promotion and Advisory Unit

Professor Isabel de Brugada, from the Department of Experimental Psychology at the University of Granada, welcomes postdoctoral candidates interested in applying for an Athenea3i Research Fellowship in 2018 at this University. The information about the Fellowship conditions, how to apply, Eligibility Criteria, Selection Process, Evaluation Process, etc. is available in https://athenea3i.ugr.es/. Please note that applicants must comply with the Eligibility Criteria (https://athenea3i.ugr.es/?page_id=23).

Brief description of the institution:

The University of Granada (UGR), founded in 1531, is one of the largest and most important universities in Spain. It serves more than 60000 students per year, including many foreign students, as UGR is the leader host institution in the Erasmus program. UGR, featuring 3650 professors and more than 2000 auxiliary personnel, offers a total of 75 degrees through its 112 departments and 28 centers.

UGR is also a leading institution in research, located in the top 5/10 of Spanish universities by a variety of ranking criteria, such as national R&D projects, fellowships awarded, publications, or international funding. UGR is one of the few Spanish Universities listed in the Shanghai Top 500 ranking (http://www.arwu.org/), and it is also well recognized for its web presence (http://www.4icu.org/top200/).

Internationally, we bet decidedly by our participation in the calls of H2020, both at partner and coordination. For the duration of the Seventh Framework Programme, the UGR has obtained a total of 66 projects, with total funding of 17.97 million euros, and for H2020, until 2015, more than 25 projects with total funding of more than 6 million euros. Our more than 3,000 researchers are grouped into 365 research groups covering all scientific fields and disciplines.

Brief description of the Centre/Research Group

The Neuroplasticity and Learning Research Group (NEPLE) includes researchers interested in learning theory and psychobiology. We all share our interests in investigating the experience-dependent plastic changes in brain circuitry which supports long-lasting changes in behaviour. Our research aims not only to explore the neural basis of learning but also to develop biologically acceptable theoretical models of learning.

Research topics:

  • Stimulus exposure effects in associative learning.
  • Contents of associative learning.
  • Perceptual Learning in human and non-human animals.
  • Dietary choline supplementation effects in learning, memory and attentional processes.

Project description

Perceptual Learning in Animals and Humans: Comparison and Salience Modulation

Perceptual Learning refers to a phenomenon that occurs when discrimination between two similar stimuli is faciltated by prior experience with them.This phenomenon has been studied using both human and non-human subjects and it is assumed that the basic perceptual and learning mechanisms are general for both cases. Some studies using humans as subjects have confirmed the basic effects of perceptual learning that can be anticipated on the basis of the theoretical models of salience modulation. However, some instances of perceptual learning, such as those that engage a process of stimulus comparison, are incompatible with these general principles and seem to be obtained only with humans. Findings from studies with human subjects suggest that, as Gibson (1956) proposed, stimulus comparison is critical for perceptual learning. The stimulus comparison process leads to higher salience of the unique characteristics of the stimuli or produces a better representation of these unique characteristics in memory. When animals are used as subjects, the standard procedure that is routinely used does not favour stimulus comparison, and when manipulations are put in place in order to aid comparison, the results are rather ambigious. In a recent review of this issue, Mitchell and Hall (2014) concluded that the difference in the ability to benefit from the opportunity to compare stimuli could constitute an important difference between the perceptual learning phenomenon in human and non-human animal.The aim of the present project is to conduct a series of experiments using non-human subjects with procedures that allow us to show that the comparison process also plays a role when these animals are used as subjects.

Research Area

  • Economic Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities (ECO-SOC)
  • Life Sciences (LIFE)

For a correct evaluation of your candidature, please send the documents below to Professor Isabel de Brugada (dbrugada@ugr.es):

  • CV
  • Letter of recommendation (optional)


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