Visiting Research Scientist – Beckman Institute (121712)



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Job description

Urbana, IL

The Memory Systems Laboratory at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology seek to fill a position for a full-time Visiting Research Scientist. The purpose of this position is to design, implement, conduct, interpret and write publications based on studies investigating relational memory and its brain substrates using behavioral, neuropsychological, eye-tracking and neuroimaging measures.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Design, implement and conduct studies investigating relational memory and its brain substrates using behavioral, eye-tracking and neuroimaging measures; analyze behavioral, eye-tracking and neuroimaging data from these studies.  Generate new analysis techniques and pipelines for novel indices of memory performance and/or deficits.
  • Supervise and oversee participant recruitment to the Memory Systems Laboratory (MSL) at UIUC, including young adults recruited via the SONA system, older adults recruited via the Cognition, Lifespan Engagement, Aging and Resilience Initiative’s “I-HELP” recruitment database and the MSL’s direct recruitment efforts.
  • Supervise and direct the day-to-day activities of the MSL (in coordination with the Lab Manager), including training undergraduates in data collection, analysis and scientific method, leading the weekly undergraduate seminar that trains undergraduates in advanced methods, including cognitive theory, research methods, writing and publication, as well as navigating life in science, etc., overseeing undergraduate data collection and analysis efforts, coordinating weekly lab meetings and research assistant training seminars and directly overseeing neuroimaging data collection.
  • Serve as the central point of contact/collaboration between the MSL and the labs of our collaborators at Wayne State University and Vanderbilt University.  This will include travel to each of the sites to coordinate ongoing projects, implement new studies at all sites and where applicable, assure that multi-site studies are sufficiently matched across locations, coordinate data integration and analysis across sites, work with collaborators to generate new experiments and techniques to further investigate questions of interest, train other sites in functional magnetic resonance imaging methods and train other sites in the usage of relational memory and eye-tracking measures.
  • Coordinate 7T MRI scanning collaboration efforts across sites (currently 7T only exists at Vanderbilt, but both Wayne State and UIUC will be collecting data with us on this machine).  Will serve to design and implement 7T data collection for all three sites.
  • Write, publish and present findings from these collaborative projects, including writing/submitting/revising manuscripts, presenting at local and national seminars and conferences and assisting in the writing of grants based on these projects.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • PhD in Psychology or closely related field
  • Experience designing and leading studies in memory or cognition and brain science
  • Experience publishing and presenting scientific results

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Knowledge of relevant research concepts, practices and procedures for all the various methods and measures used in the MSL
  • Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written
  • Able to work independently, as well as part of the team on multiple projects and to train and lead teams
  • Strong problem-solving skills with the ability to be resourceful, proactive and seek assistance as needed
  • Sustained track record of innovation and original research

The Visiting Research Scientist is a full-time, benefits-eligible Academic Professional position that may become regular at a later date. Salary is commensurate with skills and experience.

How to apply

In order to ensure full consideration, applications must be received by October 29, 2019.  Applicants may be interviewed before the closing date; however, no hiring decision will be made until after that date. The expected start is as soon as possible after the closing date. To apply, please create your candidate profile at and upload your cover letter, resume, and names/contact information for three references as a single PDF file by October 29, 2019.  All requested information must be entered for your application to be considered.  For further information, please contact Beckman Institute Human Resources at [email protected].

The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer.

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