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November 30th, 2022

Call for PhD student for project “Physiological rhythms in group behavior”

Imagine a few dozen people dancing to music in a park, while researchers wirelessly and reliably measure their heartbeats, respiration and electrodermal response. Imagine a concert hall where fifty or so spectators are equipped with a device not much larger than a cell phone that unobtrusively eavesdrops on their emotional state. We would like to invite candidates to apply to a PhD position on the topic of physiological rhythms in group behavior. The project will revolve around group interaction in musical or non-musical contexts, and its psychological and neurophysiological underpinning, with a focus on synchronization. A first step will involve analyzing already acquired datasets exploiting an innovative device developed at BRAMS for measuring physiology (respiration, cardiac and other signals) in groups of interacting humans. The project will be carried out using the state-of-the-art technological platform at BRAMS (https://brams.org/technological-platform/).

The position, jointly supervised by Prof. Simone Dalla Bella and Prof. Floris van Vugt at BRAMS (Dept. of Psychology, University of Montreal), will be fully funded for one year. Subsequent renewal may be possible depending on availability of funds. The candidate is strongly encouraged to apply for funding during the PhD.


  • Excellent spoken and written English
  • Intermediate French knowledge
  • Strong quantitative background is essential (demonstrable programming experience, interest in learning computational modeling/nonlinear dynamics; knowing Python and/or R is a pre; as is experience with physiological data analysis)
  • Eligible to enter the University of Montreal PhD-Research program (BSc or MA in psychology, cognitive neuroscience, or related discipline).
  • Canadian citizenship or permanent residency

How to apply: send your CV, a one page cover letter and your most recent grade list to johanne.david.1@umontreal.ca by 30 December 2022. Arrange for one or two reference letters to be sent separately by the same date. Interviews will be scheduled in early January and selected candidates will be announced 15 January 2023, at which point they will need to apply for the UdeM PhD program prior to the 1 February 2023 deadline. Final acceptance is provisional on acceptance into the UdeM program. The position will start in September 2023.


Take part in a research study

BRAMS (International Laboratory for Brain, Music and Sound Research) is a unique centre dedicated to research excellence in the study of music and auditory cognition with a focus on neuroscience. The research centre is located in Montreal and jointly affiliated with the University of Montreal and McGill University.


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