PhD Studentship: Developing evidence based hearing standards for the Police Service

PhD Studentship: Developing evidence based hearing standards for the Police Service

Human Sciences Group

Location: Highfield Campus

Closing Date:  Monday 07 May 2018

Reference: 868817KR

Project Reference: ISVR-HS-305

Project Themes: Bioengineering and Human Factors, Acoustics

Police officers are required to carry out complex listening tasks as part of their job every day, such as listening to important commands whilst driving with a siren sounding. It is therefore important that employees possess sufficient hearing ability in order to carry out their job safely and effectively. This is particularly relevant in a setting where an employee’s ability to understand speech is critical for their ability to carry out their duties. There is currently a gap in our ability to assess hearing in a way that can be used to accurately select and monitor police officers in terms of their functional hearing ability. This is important in order to predict whether police officers can carry out their job safely and effectively as well as identifying any early signs of hearing loss developing and avoiding unfair discrimination against those who may have raised hearing thresholds but have sufficient functional hearing to continue their duties.

Since 2012 the University of Southampton Hear for Duty team have been working with the Ministry of Defence to explore new methods for assessing auditory fitness for duty for military personnel. An iPad based speech-in-noise test is currently being validated as a tool to assess the hearing capabilities of military personnel. Building on this work, we wish to develop a similar approach for assessing duty-specific hearing in police officers, such as firearms officers, working in collaboration with the Metropolitan Police Service.

This PhD project will involve: (1) identifying the hearing critical tasks carried out by police officers within the Police Service, and (2) the design, development and validation of a functional test that assesses whether police officers possess sufficient hearing capabilities in order to carry out hearing critical tasks to the required standard.

This project will provide the successful candidate with the support and experience required to become an independent researcher and is also ideal for audiological clinicians who are interested in a career spanning both research and clinical activities. You will be part of world-renowned Institute of Sound and Vibration Research and be an active member of the Hear for Duty research team.

Candidates are expected to hold or be about to obtain an upper second class degree in audiology or hearing science.  A Masters degree and/or evidence of research output would be advantageous.

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Daniel Rowan,  Institute of Sound and Vibration Research, email dr@isvr.soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 2928.

To apply please use the following link http://www.southampton.ac.uk/engineering/postgraduate/research_degrees/apply.page? and select Faculty of Engineering and the Environment.

Further details:

  • Job Description and Person Specification