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Postdoctoral Scholar - Spatial Neuroscience Laboratory

Application Window

Open date: September 27, 2022

Most recent review date: Tuesday, Feb 28, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Friday, Jun 30, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

Dr. Liz Chrastil, PI of the Spatial Neuroscience Laboratory in the Department of Neurobiology & Behavior at the University of California, Irvine, is seeking one or more postdoctoral researchers for the coming year. The Spatial Neuroscience Lab uses dynamic and interdisciplinary research methods to answer questions about how the brain processes information to keep us oriented as we navigate through a complicated world. In addition to navigation, our research is deeply connected to the fields of learning, memory, and decision making, with aging, clinical, and translational applications. Our primary techniques are fully immersive virtual reality (VR) and human brain imaging using multimodal magnetic resonance imaging (structural MRI, fMRI, diffusion imaging, resting state) and electroencephalography (EEG).

Postdoc positions are available in the following specific areas: 1) individual differences in navigational ability, with a focus on learning and neural correlates and 2) behavioral and/or fMRI investigations of cognitive mapping compared to graph-like topologies.

Requirements for the position include: a Ph.D. in neuroscience, cognitive science, psychology, or related field. Demonstrable skill in one or more programming languages (e.g. Matlab, R, or Python) and exceptionally strong statistical skills are highly desired. A strong background in MRI data analysis including multivariate methods (multivariate pattern analysis/representational similarity analysis) is highly preferred. Experience with programming virtual environments in Unity is very desirable. The successful applicant would have a strong first-author publication record and a demonstrable interest in navigation, learning, memory, or decision making. Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written, are a must. A desire to mentor and teach graduate and undergraduate students in the lab is also a plus. Beyond qualifications and skills, the successful applicant should be collaborative, resourceful, and productive, and must be able to manage multiple research projects with ease and have an eye for common approaches and themes.

Numerous opportunities for exploration and the development of creative data science approaches are available. A very strong statistical background is highly desired. Lab and institutional resources include a new research-dedicated 3T Siemens Prisma scanner, a large ambulatory virtual reality space with wireless tracking, the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, an active Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, and a newly established sleep center. There are abundant opportunities for collaborative work with other researchers across the university. In addition to working on new projects, there are also opportunities to work with existing data across multiple research programs.

In addition to lab funding, candidates may also qualify for support through T32 institutional training grant mechanisms, postdoc NRSA, and collaborative projects. Applications will be reviewed until the position is filled. Salary is based on NIH pay scales and experience. Start date is flexible. Initial appointment is for one year at 100% time, with a comprehensive benefits package. Continuation beyond one year will be based on performance and availability of funding.

Qualified candidates should submit: 1) cover letter describing your qualifications, 2) Curriculum Vitae detailing your research experience, and 3) names and contact information for three references who can provide letters upon request. Submit applications electronically at

For more information about this position, contact Dr. Liz Chrastil at For information on the Spatial Neuroscience Laboratory, go to

The department is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching, and service.


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)

Accepting all applicants

Application Requirements

Document requirements
Reference requirements
  • 3-5 required (contact information only)
Apply link:

Campus Information

The University of California, Irvine is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer advancing inclusive excellence. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California Policy on Vaccination Programs – With Updated Interim Amendments. All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of receiving the COVID-19 Vaccine Primary Series or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, Religious Objection, and/or Deferral based on pregnancy or recent COVID-19 diagnosis and/or treatment) no later than the applicable deadline. All Covered Individuals must also provide proof of receiving the most recent CDC-recommended COVID-19 booster or properly decline such booster no later than the applicable deadline. New University of California employees should refer to Exhibit 2, Section II.C. of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Attachment for applicable deadlines. All Covered Individuals must also provide proof of being up-to-date on seasonal influenza vaccination or properly decline such vaccination no later than the applicable deadline. Please refer to the Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Program Attachment. (Capitalized terms in this paragraph are defined in the policy.) Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.

Job location

Irvine, CA