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Research Assistant / Research Associate

Requisition ID:  12381

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Fixed Term
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date:  05-Oct-2021


We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


Salary: Research Assistant: £28,756 to £29,614 (with progression to £30,497) per annum

            Research Associate: £31,406 to £33,309 (with progression to £40,927) per annum


Closing Date: 04 November 2021


The Role


We are seeking an enthusiastic and experienced Research Assistant/Associate to use electrophysiological methods on a BBSRC-funded project to study the neural control of fast movements. 


Making fast movements requires the coordination of motoneuron recruitment, which is achieved by a temporally-precise motor command. How this command is generated within the brain, and over which pathways it is transmitted to the spinal cord, remains unclear. In this project, we will determine these issues using electrophysiological methods in non-human primates trained to perform fast movements.


You will assist with animal training and sterile implant surgeries, and then perform daily electrophysiological recordings of neural and muscle activity during trained task performance. You will then analyse data, and produce drafts of publications as well as give presentations on the findings to international conferences.


You will have a high level of academic achievement, and proven scientific ability in motor system research. An ability to work within a team is critical, as is a strong commitment to Reduction, Replacement and Refinement (3Rs) and animal welfare. 


Find out more about the Faculty of Medical Sciences here: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/medical-sciences/  
Find out more about our Research Institutes here:  https://www.ncl.ac.uk/medical-sciences/research/institutes/ 


This post is full time, fixed term until 22 September 2024.  An appointment will be made at Research Assistant or Research Associate level, depending on whether the successful candidate has a PhD degree.
For informal enquiries contact: stuart.baker@ncl.ac.uk 


Key Accountabilities

•    Contribution to the research programme of the School/Institute under the clear guidance of a member of an academic staff or Principal Investigator
•    Co-ordinate own work with that of others, deal with problems which may affect the achievement of research objectives and contribute to the planning of the project(s)
•    Present information on research progress and outcomes to a Principal Investigator or groups overseeing the research project
•    Work to deadlines and manage, with support, competing priorities
•    Ensure that personal knowledge in relevant fields of study is kept up to date
•    Use research resources (including, where required, laboratories, workshops and specialist equipment) as appropriate
•    Maintain academic standards and freedom, and work in accordance with university policies (e.g. equal opportunities, health and safety policies)
•    Possible supervision and demonstration duties within undergraduate laboratories and example classes or in teaching small seminar classes
•    Undertake relevant training and development activities to develop capacity for taking on wider responsibilities
•    Develop, with advice, an awareness of own professional development needs and a personal development strategy

The Person (Essential)


Knowledge, Skills and Experience 


•    An excellent record of academic achievement
•    A high level of subject knowledge in required disciplines such as neuroscience, signal processing, statistics and computer programming
•    Willing to work with non-human primates in neuroscience research
•    Experience of electrophysiological recording (desirable)
•    Strong analytical skills, including ability to program analysis scripts in the Matlab environment (desirable)
•    Ability to communicate complex information clearly, both orally and through the written word
•    The ability to work collaboratively with colleagues
•    The ability to use personal initiative and creativity to solve research problems

Attributes and Behaviour


•    Collegiate
•    Open minded
•    Conscientious and meticulous attention to detail




•    Good honours degree (or equivalent) in Neuroscience
•    PhD in neural control of movement (for Research Associate level)

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.


The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.


We understand how important the full employment package is to our colleagues at Newcastle University and we are committed to providing a great range of benefits and discounts for all.  You can learn more about what is available here on our Benefits Website page.

Requisition ID: 12381