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PhD Studentship: The Disconnected Mind: Studying Individual Differences in the Causes and Consequences of Cognitive Ageing

The University of Edinburgh

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Edinburgh
Funding for: UK Students
Funding amount: £15,000 annual stipend plus tuition fees
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 10th October 2018
Closes: 30th November 2018

We invite applications for a three-year PhD studentship as part of a longitudinal study of cognitive and brain ageing. This work will form an integral part of the Disconnected Mind project, directed by Professor Ian Deary, which aims to identify factors that affect how well or poorly people’s cognitive functions and brain structure change as they age. The project is based on the study of healthy older people, mostly from the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 (LBC1936). It includes work on a range of possible contributors to cognitive ageing differences, i.e. demographic, psychosocial, lifestyle, biomedical, genetic, epigenetic, and brain imaging. This is an exciting opportunity to work in a successful multidisciplinary team, and on one of the most comprehensive datasets in the research field. The successful candidate will have a principal and secondary supervisor to support and guide them towards submission of a PhD thesis within three years. Candidates will already have a relevant postgraduate Masters degree (or equivalent), and be proficient in multivariate statistical analyses.

The PhD studentship begins in April 2019 or shortly thereafter. The key focus of the project will be longitudinal analysis of cognitive ageing and/or brain ageing in the participants of LBC1936. Secondary areas of research are not specified, but should be relevant to the general themes of cognitive and/or ageing and based on data available in the LBC1936 study. Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the full range of LBC1936 data available for analysis prior to submitting their application. This can be found in doi: 10.1093/ije/dyy022.

Further information available on the studentship webpage:

Applicants may request additional information from the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 Study Office:


This scholarship is funded by Age UK for a UK student to be based in the Department of Psychology at the University of Edinburgh. It will provide:

  • UK level tuition fees for three years.
  • Annual stipend of £15,000 for three years.
  • Additional funding for conference and fieldwork travel.


  • The successful applicant will have an undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline and will have a relevant Masters degree (or equivalent).
  • Due to conditions from the funding source this studentship is available for UK students only.
  • Existing doctoral researchers are not eligible for this award.
  • Experience of multivariate statistical analyses at an appropriate level is necessary.

Application Procedure

Complete the studentship application form available online and submit with the required supporting documentation by 30th November 2018.

Further Information

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