Tuesday, 3 December 2013

PhD and MSc positions in HCI at Queen's University's Human Media Lab

The Human Media Lab at Queen's University (www.humanmedialab.org) is inviting applications for PhD and MSc students in Human-Computer Interaction. The positions are fully funded for 4 years for PhD students, and 2 years for MSc students. We are looking for outstanding students with a degree in Computer Science or a related discipline and a strong background in HCI.

The Human Media Lab specializes in developing and evaluating advanced disruptive user interface prototypes. Work at the lab involves conceiving of designs, engineering and implementing hardware and/or software interfaces, and empirically evaluating prototypes of computers of the future. Our recent emphasis has been on Organic User Interfaces (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_user_interface): Computers that use non-flat or flexible displays. Prior work includes flexible smartphones (www.hml.queensu.ca/paperphone), tablet pcs (www.hml.queensu.ca/papertab) and spherical and cylindrical form factors (www.hml.queensu.ca/telehuman).


As part of this project, you will be working on systems involving flexible displays and 3D printed electronic objects, with the goal of creating user interfaces that have a three dimensional shape enveloped by a display, and capable of conveying real-world haptics to users (see www.hml.queensu.ca/morephone for an example). The study of the effects of haptics and the functionality of these objects will be an integral part of the research.

You will be supervised by Prof. Roel Vertegaal, and collaborate with some of the world's top interaction designers, including Yves Behar of Fuseproject (Jawbone, XO laptop), the world's premier flexible display firm Plastic Logic, as well as with top haptics engineers at industrial partner Immersion, Inc. You will collaborate with other students at the lab in a creative, forward-looking process with the aim of disseminating work at top conferences and in the popular press.


These positions are supported by Immersion, Inc. (www.immersion.com), Fuseproject (fuseproject.com), Plastic Logic (www.plasticlogic.com) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).


PhD applicants must hold an MSc in Human-Computer Interaction, Computer Science or strongly related field. MSc applicants must hold an honours degree (BSc) in Human-Computer Interaction or Computer Science. All applicants are expected to have a strong interest and multidisciplinary background in a combination of human factors, empirical psychology, computer science, industrial design or electrical engineering. Successful candidates will have published at top HCI conferences, such as ACM CHI, UIST, TEI, ITS or CSCW.


The Human Media Lab will provide full support for a period of four years for PhD positions, and two years for MSc positions. The level of support will be highly competitive with that offered by other Canadian universities, and may consist of a combination of research assistantships and teaching assistantships.

Application Process

The deadline for applications is January 15th, 2014. Please send a strong application including CV, visual project portfolio, and references to roel[at]cs.queensu.ca. Please attach a project proposal covering your motivation and research interests, and additional material strengthening your application. Tag your email with the subject line "Graduate Application".

About the Human Media Lab

The Human Media Lab is one of Canada's premier laboratories for high-tech research in Human-Computer Interaction. It employs a growing team of 12 students, postdocs and assistants that is housed in our new headquarters, designed by world-famous designer Karim Rashid (http://www.hml.queensu.ca/hml-by-karim-2/). The Human Media Lab is part of the School of Computing, one of the top five departments in Computing in Canada. Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada is ranked as one of the top 4 universities in Canada. The City of Kingston is located in the beautiful Thousand Islands region of Ontario, equidistant to Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa (http://goo.gl/maps/Wgpng).

Other links

Information about Queen's School of Computing's formal application procedure: http://www.cs.queensu.ca/students/graduate/ http://www.queensu.ca/sgs/prospective-students/application-process

For an Discovery Channel documentary on the HML facilities, visit http://watch.discoverychannel.ca/#clip670943

For more information about Organic User Interfaces visit http://www.organicui.org
Information about Queen's University and living in Kingston, Ontario: http://www.queensu.ca/ http://tourism.kingstoncanada.com/

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