PhD Students Sought for Spatial Skills Research Project to help close the gender gap in STEM

Published: 3 Mar, 2021

TU Dublin is seeking applications from current students and graduates of various Masters programmes in Cognitive Psychology, Early, Primary and Post Primary Education Teacher Education, Linguistics, Art, Design, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

TU Dublin is coordinating an international research project which aims to enhance the spatial ability of young people and to help close the gender gap in STEM. The multi-agency project, Spatially Enhanced Learning Linked to STEM (SellSTEM), was awarded €4.12M in funding from the Marie Skłodowska Curie Innovative Training Network under Horizon 2020, an EU 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness.

SellSTEM is now seeking 15 Early Stage Researchers who will be trained to collect spatial ability data from children in Europe to measure it against academic performance and career choice and analyse the interaction by gender, region and socioeconomic status. The researchers will also develop methods to foster children's spatial ability through online learning, tactile activities, maker-space workshops, project-based learning, and integrated with the STEM curriculum.

Ideal candidates will be current and recent graduates of Masters' programmes in a range of disciplines, including Cognitive Psychology, Education (early childhood, primary, post-primary), Teacher Education, Linguistics, Art & Design, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. They must be interested in q Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network funded PhD position where they will explore new ways to raise boys and especially girls' spatial ability levels and investigate the role of spatial ability in and for STEM learning (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). 

SellSTEM is currently seeking applications for 15 Early Stage Researchers with salaries in the range of 38,000 to 62,000 euro per annum for 3 years (exact salary depends on country). Successful candidates will join one of the ten SellSTEM partner institutions across Europe, registered as PhD students, to join the research and training programme. The position will also include a secondment of several months to another university or non-academic partner. 

Research projects will examine various aspects of the role of spatial ability and its development among children of all ages in STEM learning, maker education, STEAM project work, linguistics, working memory, teacher attitudes, education policy and teacher professional development.  SellSTEM is a great opportunity to join an international, interdisciplinary and intersectoral research team and receive state of the art doctoral training with very generous terms and conditions. 

Members of the SellSTEM consortium, include Technological University Dublin, Technische Universiteit Delft, Bangor University, Norges Teknisk-Naturvitenskapelige Universitet – NTNU, Latvijas Universitāte, Universiteit Leiden, Paris-Lodron-Universität Salzburg – PLUS, Universität Regensburg, Universität Koblenz-Landau and Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan - KTH, Microsoft Ireland Operations, Stichting VHTO, SAP Service and Support Centre, Ionad Oideachais Mhuineacháin, De Galan School Voor Training, Science Hub TU Delft, Marino Institute of Education, Stichting Waag Society and VHTO, National Expert Organisation on Girls/Women and Science/Technology, Netherlands.

 For more details, please visit here

Please note the MSCA Mobility rule, which states that candidates must have resided in the country of the university they’re applying to for less than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date. The closing date is Sunday, 14 March 2021.