Opportunities for new researchers

Our lab spans numerous experimental approaches and techniques, and as a result, we need all kinds of expertise.  The core of our lab comprises neuroscientists with interests including developmental neuroscience, circuit function, and behaviour, and we are always looking to add motivated researchers of this type.  Increasingly, experience with coding (Matlab and Python) is desirable, but for the right candidate, this can be learned after arriving in the lab.

The intricate sensory stimuli that we present during our whole-brain imaging are incompatible with off-the-shelf SPIM microscopes, and our optical physics approaches require flexible access to the light paths.  This means that we build our microscopes from the ground up, customised to our needs and to the particular experiments that we are doing at the time.  This vastly increases our experimental capacities, but it also means that we need capable optical physicists on the team.  Our optical physicists build and maintain our SPIM scopes and use them for physics-based techniques including holographic illumination for optogenetics (Favre-Bulle et al, 2015) and optical trapping for vestibular stimulation (Favre-Bulle et al, 2017 and 2018).  We are always looking for ways to expand and improve our optical physics approaches, and are eager to recruit skilled physicists to our team.

With our SPIM microscopes, we produce vast datasets containing activity from hundreds of thousands or millions of neurons. This leaves us with a great need for people who can code solutions for image analysis, data mining, and the detection of salient patterns among these vast data.  Our mathematical and neuroinformatic approaches have grown more sophisticated over the years (see the progression from Thompson et al, 2016 to Vanwalleghem et al, 2017, and Favre-Bulle et al, 2018), but we are constantly seeking new and better ways to make sense of brain-wide neural function from a computational standpoint.  We welcome applications from researchers interested in explaining neural activity mathematically or in developing testable mathematical models for sensory processing.

Positions are available across our research program for undergraduates, honours students, PhD students, and postdocs, and we are happy to entertain new ideas.  If you are interested in joining the lab, please contact Ethan, providing a CV and ideas for the types of project that you would like to carry out.

Open positions for two new PhD students

The Scott Lab is offering two fully funded scholarships for new PhD students. These include full scholarships plus a stipend (currently $27,568) for a period of 3.5 years, with possible extensions beyond that. The successful applicants would commence on January 1st, 2020, at the latest.  Applicants must have a bachelors degree with honours or masters degree before the date of enrolment. Applicants for whom English is not a first language must satisfy English language requirements outlined here, although these tests can be taken after the application process.

We are especially eager to add students with training in optical physics and engineering (who would pursue projects at the interface of advanced microscopy, light sculpting, and optogenetics), and students with training in computational biology or mathematics (whose projects would focus on neuroinformatics, signal detection, or machine learning). Coding experience (Matlab or Python) is desirable, but not essential. Students with training in physics or mathematics are welcome to apply; we will teach you neuroscience once you arrive. We are also, as always, open to applications from candidates with training and interest in more traditional neuroscience.

As you can see from our “Team” page, we are a highly international group with a range of backgrounds and training. Our success is built on cooperation and mutual support within the group, and we seek new members who will reinforce these aspects of our lab’s culture. We value inclusivity, and encourage applications from those who would help us to increase our diversity as a group.

Applicants should submit 1) a cover letter outlining why you would be a good fit for the lab and describing a project that you would propose to carry out,  2) a CV, and 3) academic transcripts from your undergraduate studies. In the first instance, duplicate transcripts are acceptable. These should be combined into a single PDF and emailed to ethan.scott@uq.edu.au.  Applications must be received by May 1st, 2019, to guarantee consideration.