PhD candidate for the project “Motor-auditory coupling in human beat- and rhythm perception.”

PhD candidate for the project “Motor-auditory coupling in human beat- and rhythm perception.”

Published Deadline Location
11 Oct 27 Oct Maastricht

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In the department of Neuropsychology & Psychopharmacology (NP&PP), Maastricht University, there is a position available for a PhD candidate for the project “Motor-auditory coupling in human beat- and rhythm perception.”

Job description

Our group has a long-standing interest in human brain mechanisms underlying processing of time and musical beat- and rhythm.

Recent research showed that even passive listening to a musical beat activates the motor cortex. Several groups have argued that recurrent processing from the motor- to the auditory system may be required for a rhythmic structure to emerge in sound. However, there is little causal evidence and the physiological mechanisms remain unclear. Clarifying these (causal) mechanisms drives this project. Moreover, by investigating spontaneous perceptual transitions in an ambiguous rhythm, we further aim to trace how novel rhythm representations emerge from a embodied point of view. In this project we will investigate the influences of feedback from the motor-system and heartrate on fluctuations in neural oscillations, potentially underlying these perceptual shifts.

We will use combined imaging (M/EEG) and brain stimulation techniques (TMS/tACS.) Results should yield valuable insights for understanding the underlying mechanisms of beat- and rhythm perception as well as for the field of consciousness research. In addition, it will help to inform clinical studies aimed at treatments for speech- and movement disorders.


Maastricht University (UM)


Candidates are expected to have a MSc in Psychology (preferable biological- or experimental psychology) and a strong interest in oscillatory mechanisms underlying cognition and functional/structural connectivity. In addition, candidates should possess good experimental and statistical skills and oral and excellent written fluency in English. Previous experience with neuroimaging methods and programming are a plus.

The application ishould include a CV with marks obtained and the names, telephone numbers and email addresses of at least two referees (who have agreed to be contacted)

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website > Support > UM employees.

The appointment is for a period of 4 years, including fulltime employment of 1.0 fte (38 hour/p week), and should lead to completion of a dissertation. After the first year of employment, the PhD candidate will be evaluated for continuation of the project.



Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 18,000 students and 4,300 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.


Department of Neuropsychology & Psychopharmacology

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  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2325—€2972 per month
  • University graduate
  • AT2019.342


Maastricht University (UM)

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Universiteitssingel 40, 6229 ER, Maastricht

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