PhD scholarship in Assessing Hearing Device Benefit using Virtual Sound Environments DTU Electrical Engineering

PhD scholarship in Assessing Hearing Device Benefit using Virtual Sound Environments

 

DTU Electrical Eng

 

TUESDAY 12 SEP 17

 

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Apply no later than 15 October 2017


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The Hearing Systems group at DTU Elektro seeks a qualified candidate for a vacant 3-year PhD position in collaboration with hearing-aid manufacturer Widex A/S. Hearing Systems is part of the department of Electrical Engineering. Our research is concerned with speech communication, auditory signal processing and perception, audiology, behavioral and objective measures of the auditory function, environmental acoustics, and hearing-instrument signal processing. The goal of this research is to understand the functioning of the human auditory system and to provide insights that are useful for technical applications such as speech recognition systems, hearing aids, cochlear implants, and hearing diagnostics tools.



Currently, hearing devices are mainly evaluated and optimized using relatively simple sentence tests presented in noise. These laboratory-based tests typically do not capture features of real-world acoustic environments such as reverberation, nor do they consider the importance of cognitive processing and comprehension by the user. The consequence is that hearing devices could be working differently in the real world than manufacturers expect. This PhD project aims to bridge the gap between laboratory-based tests and real world listening by using virtual sound environments, and creating scenarios and tasks that are representative of the difficulties faced by hearing-device users in their daily lives. 



Responsibilities and tasks 


The PhD candidate will define a set of critical scenarios and listening tasks that challenge hearing-impaired persons and current hearing-aid algorithms. A corresponding set of acoustic scenes will be created for presentation using a multi-loudspeaker virtual sound environment.



A real-time hearing-aid simulator will be used to implement a set of example processing algorithms (e.g. beamforming, compression, dereverberation). These algorithms will be evaluated in the defined acoustic scenes both through objective measurements (e.g. directivity index, signal-to-noise ratio benefit,…) as well as listening tests with hearing-impaired listeners.



The ideal candidate will have a strong technical background and interest in a wide range of topics, including audio signal processing (MATLAB), acoustics, auditory perception and experimental design. The project includes a large hands-on component in working with the virtual sound environment.



Qualifications 


Candidates should hold a MSc in engineering or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the MSc in engineering.



Approval and Enrolment


PhD scholarships are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general PhD programmes of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.   



Assessment


The assessment of the applicants will be made by Torsten Dau, Adam Westermann and Marton Marschall. 



We offer


We offer an interesting and challenging job in an international environment focusing on education, research, scientific advice and innovation, which contribute to enhancing the economy and improving social welfare. We strive for academic excellence, collegial respect and freedom tempered by responsibility. The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is a leading technical university in Northern Europe and benchmarks with the best universities in the world.



Salary and appointment terms


The salary and appointment terms are consistent with the current rules for PhD students. The period of employment is 3 years.



The main workplace will be DTU Lyngby Campus. Some work may be carried out at Widex headquarters located in Lynge.



Further information 


Further information may be obtained from Professor Torsten Dau, tel.: +45 4525 3977.



You can read more about DTU Elektro on www.elektro.dtu.dk and the Hearing Systems group at www.hea.elektro.dtu.dk. 



Application


Please submit your online application no later than 15 October 2017. Applications must be submitted as one pdf filecontaining all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one pdf file. The file must include: 

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)

 

Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their MSc, but cannot begin before having received it. 



All qualified candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply. 


The Department of Electrical Engineering is the central department at the DTU in electrical, biomedical engineering and acoustic technology. It is our goal to ensure an engineering training and research, which matches that of other leading universities around the world. The department is organized into sections each covering important areas of electrical, biomedical engineering and acoustic technologies. Including PhD students we have a total of 275 staff members. 



DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 10,600 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.


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