[Elsnet-list] PhD / Post-Doc Position in Incremental Language and Gesture Generation @ Uni Bielefeld, Germany

Schlangen David david.schlangen at uni-bielefeld.de
Mon Oct 28 21:11:45 CET 2013

The "Cognitive Interaction Excellence Cluster" (CITEC) at Bielefeld University, Germany, announces availability of 
 ** one position in the area of dialogue processing **. 

The position is to be filled as a position for a student working towards a PhD degree or as a post-doctoral position, depending on qualifications of candidates. It is situated within the context of a larger research project, as described below. Enquiries can be directed to David Schlangen ( david.schlangen at uni-bielefeld.de ). Further details see below (section "Dialogue").

Multiple PhD/Postdoc Positions at CITEC, Bielefeld University, Germany

TOPIC: Intelligent Coaching Space

We are seeking highly qualified candidates for several PhD/Postdoc positions in the large scale project ‘Intelligent Coaching Space’ (ICSPACE) at Bielefeld University’s Center of Excellence on Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC) [1][2].

ICSPACE will explore how humans can be supported in learning and practicing movement tasks, as needed in sports training, motor skill learning, or physical rehabilitation. The goal is to develop a Virtual Reality (VR)-based training environment that provides adaptive and personalized instruction and tutoring in an online, closed-loop learning and interaction system. To achieve this, the project will bring together work on motion analysis and neuro-cognitive skill diagnosis with novel approaches to generate multi-sensory (visual, auditory, haptic) feedback and coaching strategies like task-oriented feedback, guidance of attention, and action-oriented communication through a virtual coach.


Four PhD or Postdoc positions are available, each of which devoted to one of the different research topics involved in the project:

This position will work on methods to recognize and assess sports movements, to create such movements on virtual characters, and to link relevant movement features to higher-level cognitive representations of performance skills. The successful candidate will have a background in VR/Motion Tracking, Computer Animation, Human Movement Science. Knowledge on Machine Learning, Pattern Recognition, or Motor Control will be helpful.

This position will focus on the link between human perception and action and in particular will investigate and model the role of different forms of multi-sensory feedback for human sensorimotor learning. The successful candidate should have a background in a field related to cognitive neuroscience. Some experience with human studies on multi-sensory perception and sensorimotor learning is preferred. The position will likely involve eye tracking and the recording of kinematic patterns of movement.

This position will work on work on how information needed for effective coaching can be communicated through interactive and intuitive multimodal dialogue. The successful candidate has a background in (Computational) Linguistics and/or Cognitive Science/A.I.. Knowledge on Natural Language Processing/Generation (NLG), Dialogue Systems, in particular incremental processing, and multimodal Virtual Agents will be helpful.

This position will work on the elements and the process of coaching within ICSPACE. The main tasks are experimental investigation and transfer of knowledge from coaching in real sport and/or rehabilitation scenarios to a technical coaching environment. The succesful candidate will have a background in Motor Control research and/or Sport Sciences, Cognitive Psychology, experimental research and knowledge about coaching. Knowledge in Computer Science will be helpful.


The project will provide the chance to perform cutting-edge research in an international context. PhD applicants will receive supervision and support in developing the necessary skills to produce high-quality research necessary to earn a PhD Degree. Depending on the specific position, applicants are expected to have programming skills or experience on empirical experimental work, the ability to work independently, strong interpersonal skills as well as good command of English. Knowledge of German is not required.

The salary for each position is around  3.300 Euro per month (pre taxes), according to scale TV-L E 13 in the German University System [3]. The salary increases with the duration of the employment.

Each position is available for two years and can be prolonged for one more year. Candidates are expected to start on January 15th, 2014 or later.

Applications will be considered until the position has been filled. For full consideration please submit applications by Nov 15 2013. Interviews will be scheduled via video conference after the end of the application period. Applicants will be informed of the outcome of the selection by the end of November.

Applications should be sent by email to Silke Koelsch (skoelsch at techfak.uni-bielefeld.de), 
preferably as a *single* PDF document including a CV, motivation letter, publication 
record (if applicable), record of teaching activities (if applicable) and any other relevant 
information in addition to the names of two referees. The application should highlight the
expertise in the areas mentioned above and express the research interests of the applicant.

Applications from suitably qualified handicapped and severely handicapped persons are expressly encouraged.

Bielefeld University has received a number of awards for its achievements in the provision of equal opportunity and has been recognised as a family friendly university. The University welcomes applications from women. This is particularly true with regard both to academic and technical posts as well as positions in Information Technology and trades and crafts. Applications are handled according to the provisions of the state equal opportunity statutes.


Bielefeld is one of the 20 largest cities in Germany (with close to 330.000 inhabitants) [4]. It is a lively city with a lot of cultural and entertainment opportunities (see [5]). It is located in the heart of the Teutoburg Forest [6], offering many opportunities for outdoor and leisure activities.

[1] http://www.uni-bielefeld.de/International/
[2] http://www.cit-ec.de/
[3] http://oeffentlicher-dienst.info/tv-l/west/
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bielefeld
[5] http://www.bielefeld.de/en/index.html
[6] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teutoburg_Forest

David Schlangen
Professor of Applied Computational Linguistics
Fak. LiLi, Universität Bielefeld
Postfach 10 01 31
D-33501 Bielefeld

Office C5-201
Tel.  +49 521 106-67323
Fax. +49 521 106-89050

david.schlangen at uni-bielefeld.de

** new website http://www.dsg-bielefeld.de **

More information about the Elsnet-list mailing list