The Human Resources Strategy for Researchers

PhD student

    University of Warsaw
    Computer scienceModelling tools
    Language sciencesLinguistics
    Psychological sciencesCognitive science
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    28/06/2020 00:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Poland › Warsaw

A PhD position available in the ongoing research project NCN OPUS 2018/29/B/HS1/00884 “Developmentally informed agent-based modeling of symbolic constraints in interaction” within the Interdisciplinary Doctoral School.

Principal investigator: prof. Joanna Rączaszek-Leonardi

Discipline: Psychology (additional discipline: Mathematics/Computer Science/Philosophy), 2 open positions

Project description:

The project concerns the fundamental processes of emergence of symbolic communication in interactive agents. We will study these processes using computer simulations informed by both theoretical (psychology, semiotics, philosophy, anthropology) and empirical research (developmental psychology, experimental semiotics, psycholinguistics). Short description of the project: OPUS abstract

Doctoral advisors:

Prof. Joanna Rączaszek-Leonardi, Faculty of Psychology, and a co-advisor from the above disciplines.



Education program

Program realized in the Interdisciplinary Doctoral School and the realization of individual project, including the following responsibilities:

  • Reading and analysing scientific literature on traditional and alternative ways of capturing language emergence and use.

  • Engagement in formalizing existing theories on language evolution and acquisition.

  • Contributing to designing models targeting key research questions for the project.

  • Developing computational models.

  • Analysing and reporting the results of computer simulations.

  • Writing technical reports, scientific manuscripts, preparing conference talks and posters.

  • Help in organizing lab meetings. Co-organizing scientific conferences and symposia.

  • Supervision of interns and programmers responsible for subtasks within the project.

  • Help in making code and data publicly accessible according to open science standards.

The education lasts 4 years. It includes obligatory classes (no more than 240 hours in total during the whole period of education) and the implementation of an individual research program, carried out under the supervision of a supervisor. Doctoral thesis under the program may not last longer than 4 years.

Doctoral School scholarship:

During the four years of study, each PhD student receives a scholarship in the amount of PLN 2371.70 for the first two years of studies (before the mid-term evaluation) and PLN 3653.70 in the next two years after the mid-term evaluation. Supplement for people with disabilities: PLN 711.51.

From this amount mandatory medical insurance contribution is subtracted (around 11%).

The scholarship amount is regulated by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education and may be subject to change.

NCN project scholarship:

Selected candidates are eligible for additional project related scholarship which amounts to PLN 4000 monthly for 24 months. This part of scholarship is free from taxes or additional contributions.

Eligibility criteria

Research project (maximum number of points – 30)

When evaluating the project, the following shall be taken into account:

  • definition of the research problem, including objective, research questions, hypotheses (0-10 points);
  • novelty and originality of the research project (0-5 points);
  • methodology appropriate for the objective, application of the methodology going beyond the leading area of study (0-10 points);
  • status of research and the bibliography relevant to achieving the research objective (0-5 points).

Scientific activity of the candidate (maximum number of points – 10)

Interview (maximum number of points – 60)

The following shall be taken into account when evaluating the interview:

  • presentation of the scientific question related to the research project prepared by the candidate (0-30 points);
  • discussion with the candidate pertaining to the justification of the selection of the research areas in the context of research problems and methods proposed, knowledge of the subject, substantive knowledge, linguistic correctness and the ability to use a scientific language (Polish and/or English) (0-30 points).

The interview shall be carried out in Polish or English – in accordance with the candidate’s preferences presented in IRK. If the Polish language is selected, the interview may include parts in English.

Selection process

Two-stage process:

  • Stage I: evaluation of the research project and scientific activities of the candidate;
  • Stage II: interview.

The interview shall comprise a presentation related to a research project, although the presentation shall not repeat the content of the project. Its purpose is presenting the research question, showing it in a broader context, etc., together with the evaluation of the candidate’s research suitability. In justified instances (e.g. where the candidate stays abroad), based on the written request of the candidate addressed to the Recruitment Coordinator, the interview may be carried out remotely, using generally available online tools.

Maximum number of points that can be obtained in the selection procedure – 100 points:

  • Stage I – 40 points (the number of points needed to qualify to stage II – 20 points).
  • Stage II – 60 points.

Offer Requirements

    Psychological sciences: Master Degree or equivalent
    Mathematics: Master Degree or equivalent
    Computer science: Master Degree or equivalent
    Philosophy: Master Degree or equivalent
    Language sciences: Master Degree or equivalent
    ENGLISH: Good


Successful candidate should have:

  • Interests in basic research and philosophy, especially philosophy of mind and language.
  • Familiarity with statistical data analysis techniques.
  • Creativity and independent problem solving skills.
  • Motivation to become involved in the project on all levels (theory and implementation).
  • Programming skills (Python) and ability to use existing platforms to build computational models (for example, neural networks, Bayesian networks).

Specific Requirements

Master’s degree (or equivalent*) in cognitive science, computer science, mathematics, philosophy, psychology, linguistics or similar discipline.

* Possible exceptions: see https://szkolydoktorskie.uw.edu.pl/en/msd-2/ or contact the School recruitment office.

Map Information

Job Work Location Personal Assistance locations
Work location(s)
2 position(s) available at
Faculty of Psychology, University of Warsaw
Stawki 5/7

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Know more about it at University of Warsaw

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EURAXESS offer ID: 525819


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