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Research Assistant/Associate Gait Analysis

Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK


  • Posted on: 04th Feb 2021
  • Salary: Research Assistant - £28,331 - £30,046, per annum
  • REF: 5677
  • Closes: 25th February 2021
  • Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
  • Hours: Full Time

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


Research Assistant – £28,331 – £30,046, per annum

Research Associate – £30,942, per annum

Closing Date: 25 February 2021

The Role

This is a full-time, 1 year fixed term Research Assistant/Associate position and provides an exciting opportunity for an early career scientist who is interested in human movement, wearable technology and digital outcomes.

You will be expected to work in an interdisciplinary group who has an established international reputation in gait analysis and wearable technology analytics.

This project is funded through the Medical Research Council (MRC) Confidence in Concept (CiC) Award and aims to look at the use of wearable technology in real-world setting to study medication adherence in people with Parkinson’s disease and its impact on their mobility.

The work will be undertaken within the Brain and Movement (BAM) Research Group with Dr Silvia Del Din and will be based in the Translational and Clinical Research Institute. You will focus on the application of wearable technology to measure medication adherence and its impact on digital mobility outcomes in people with Parkinson’s disease.

This post is fixed term for a period of 1 YEAR (12 months: 1st of April 2021 – 30th March 2022).

For informal enquiries contact: Dr Silvia Del Din (silvia.del-din@ncl.ac.uk)


Brain and Movement Research Team: https://research.ncl.ac.uk/bam/

Translational and Clinical Research Institute: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/medical-sciences/research/institutes/translational/

Find out more about the Faculty of Medical Sciences here: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/medical-sciences/

Find out more about our Research Institutes here: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/medical-sciences/research/institutes/

Key Accountabilities

  • Although working under the general guidance of an academic or Principal Investigator, you will contribute ideas, including enhancements to the technical or methodological aspects of their studies, thus providing substantial ‘added value’
  • Develop and carry out the specified project using appropriate techniques and equipment as outlined in the personal requirements
  • Determine appropriate methodologies for research, with advice and support where required
  • Contribute to grant applications submitted by others and in time develop own research objectives and proposals for funding
  • Begin to write, with appropriate support, proposals for individual research funding or, where funders do not permit this, contribute to the writing of collective bids
  • Assess research findings for the need/scope for further investigations
  • Contribute to the writing up of their research for publication and dissemination, either through seminar and conference presentations or through publications
  • Present research findings, either at conferences or through publications in reputable outlets appropriate to the discipline
  • May be involved in the supervision, with guidance, of final year undergraduate research projects and in providing support to postgraduate research students or Research Assistants
  • Will need to work with the support staff and, on occasions, with undergraduate and postgraduate students, and interact intellectually with other academic members of the Institute.
  • May contribute to events celebrating the public engagement of science/social sciences/humanities
  • Develop an awareness of University structures, policies and procedures and relevant issues in the higher education, research, social and political environment
  • Manage work flow within the project for data management
  • Collect patients’ clinical and wearable technology (sensors) data
  • Apply a plethora of existing methods and develop new signal processing techniques and algorithms to extract relevant digital mobility outcomes pertaining to gait and activity patterns
  • Manage complex data sets
  • Prepare reports and write papers
  • Collecting clinical and wearable technology data in people with Parkinson’s disease
  • Processing wearable technology data pertaining to mobility (e.g. gait) and activity,
  • Applying modelling and statistical analysis techniques for analysis of wearable technology data time series in relation to medication intake
  • Publishing and presenting key findings from the project.

The Person

Knowledge, Skills and Experience


  • Ability to work well as part of a team and rapidly acquire new skills
  • Detailed subject knowledge (PI to describe subject knowledge required) in the area of research
  • Likelihood of advanced skills directly related to the research projects
  • High level of analytical and problem-solving capability
  • Ability to communicate complex information with clarity and to encourage the commitment of others
  • Experience of research with clear transferable skills and some experience or awareness of the research environment
  • Presentations at conferences and/or high-quality publications
  • Expertise working with wearable sensor data and analysis
  • Experience with movement analysis and signal processing (especially as applied to mobility/ gait)
  • Expertise in developing novel algorithms, but also understanding, optimising and applying developed algorithms for extraction of digital mobility outcomes (e.g. gait outcomes)
  • Very good knowledge of and experience using Matlab or equivalent programming languages (e.g. Octave, Python, etc.)
  • Database and project management skills
  • Knowledge of statistical techniques and time series modelling


  • Knowledge of machine learning techniques
  • Good information technology and computing skills
  • Experience working with older adults and/or patients

Attributes and Behaviour (Essential)

  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Capacity for original thought


  • Good honours degree (or equivalent) with some subject knowledge in Biomedical Engineering, Movement Science or related field (Research Assistant)
  • A PhD in Biomedical Engineering, Movement Science or related field (Research Associate)

The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society. We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent. We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.

Requisition ID: 5677

Employer Achievements:

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