Postdoctoral Researcher - The Computation and Psycholinguistics Laboratory

Type of Position: 

Post Doc



Application Deadline: 

Sunday, September 6, 2020


Posting Date: July 23, 2020

Department of Psychology
University of Toronto


Area of Research: The Computation and Psycholinguistics Laboratory (CAP Lab) in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto Scarborough invites applications for a full-time postdoctoral fellow to study either (a) the computational mechanisms underlying reading or (b) ambiguous word comprehension. 

Description of duties:

For an applicant interested in the computational mechanisms underlying reading:

The project focus is on identifying and modeling the mechanisms involved in learning new words and the consequences of this newly acquired knowledge for representation and learning to read.  It will involve extensive collaboration with Professors Mark Pitt (OSU) and Nicolas Dumay (Exeter).  Relevant background for the project is available in the following article:

For an applicant interested in the computational mechanisms underlying ambiguous word comprehension:

This project focuses on understanding how contextual information interacts with ambiguous words to activate a contextually appropriate interpretation.  Work on this project could potentially combine a neural network model of the process of ambiguous word comprehension with a model of how ambiguous word meanings can be extracted from text co-occurrence.  Relevant background is available in the following articles:   and

Salary: Salary will be in the $45,000-$60,000 range, commensurate with qualifications and experience.  

Required qualifications: The successful candidate must have a PhD in Psychology, Cognitive Science, Computer Science, Linguistics, or a closely related field by the time of appointment, with a focus on computational methods and theory. Candidates with prior training in computational modeling of language are encouraged to apply; candidates with prior training in neural network (connectionist / parallel distributed processing / deep learning) models of language are particularly encouraged to apply. Experience programming web-based experiments or with javascript/mysql may also be an asset. 

Application instructions

All individuals interested in this position must submit the following application materials to by the closing date:

1.     Curriculum vitae. 

2.     A one-page research statement related outlining research experience and interests related to the project 

3.     A sample of previously published work

4.     Two reference letters (to be emailed directly to by the referees) 

Closing date:    An initial review of applications will occur on September 6, 2020; candidates should submit by this deadline to receive full consideration.  The position will remain open until filled.

Supervisor: Professor Blair Armstrong

Expected start date: The target start date for the position is October 1, 2020, although this is flexible.

Term: The initial appointment will be for a term of one year with the possibility of renewal.

FTE:      Full-time / 100% FTE

The normal hours of work are 40 hours per week for a full-time postdoctoral fellow (pro-rated for those holding a partial appointment) recognizing that the needs of the employee’s research and training and the needs of the supervisor’s research program may require flexibility in the performance of the employee’s duties and hours of work.

The successful candidate will join the vibrant research community at the University of Toronto, one of the world's highest ranked institutes in psychology, linguistics, and computer science, and with a number of laboratories and research groups standing at the intersection between these disciplines.  Several talk series and discussion groups are also available at the intersection of these fields.  Candidates will have the opportunity to engage in a number of international collaborations involving computational, behavioural and neural investigations of learning and representation in the US, Spain, and Israel, with possible travel to these labs, and have access to word-class computing facilities, neuroimaging, equipment, behavioural testing suites, and a large multi-lingual participant pool.  

Toronto is consistently ranked among the most livable cities in the world. It is a highly multi-cultural environment both inside and outside the University community, and offers opportunities to enjoy the music, food, and arts of the world.   The city also boasts an extensive network of public parks and trails, including many along the edge of Lake Ontario, as well as an extensive public transportation network and world class public services. 

Employment as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto is covered by the terms of the CUPE 3902 Unit 5 Collective Agreement.

This job is posted in accordance with the CUPE 3902 Unit 5 Collective Agreement.

The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.

Emergency Posting: