PhD Research Fellow in Innovation in Maritime learning and assessment practices (Cloud simulations)

Deadline: 16.11.2020

University of South-Eastern Norway

University of South-Eastern Norway has about 18 000 students and about 1500 employees. The university is organized in four faculties, with instruction and R&D activities on eight campuses. The main profile of the university is to provide socially relevant education, geared towards specific professions, and adapted to the requirements of the workplace, as well as to produce applied research and development.

The Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences have a vacancy for a position as PhD Research Fellow in Innovation in Maritime learning and assessment practices (Cloud simulations)

About the position

The Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences at the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) has a vacancy for one full-time position as PhD Research Fellow in the Centre of Excellence in Maritime Simulator Training and Assessment (COAST). The vacant position is formally attached to the Department of Maritime Operations and reports to the Head of the Department. The place of employment is at the USN, Campus Bakkenteigen.

The appointment is for a period of three years. In relevant cases, the period can be set to 4 years. It is a requirement that the successful applicant is granted admission to the University’s Doctoral Programme in “Nautical Operations” within three months from the commencement date. Date of commencement is set to 15 February 2021; earlier date is possible by agreement.

The PhD position will be part of the Centre of Excellence in Maritime Simulator Training and Assessment (COAST). COAST is a joint initiative of the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN), Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL) and The Arctic University of Norway (UiT) and aims to become the world’s leading provider of simulator training and assessment for maritime education.

The PhD candidate will investigate the interplay of participants and technical tools in everyday simulator practices. The work will be part of COAST’s vision for novel research-based pedagogical approaches to simulator-based training and assessment methods. The candidate is also expected to collaborate with other PhD projects in formulating research design, data collection and other COAST related dissemination activities across the consortium.

The PhD project must address the research objectives of the broader project and the applicants are asked to submit a 5-page proposal with their application, see more details under “How to apply”. The position involves close collaboration with scientists working on Training, assessment, learning & human factors at the Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences

About the PhD-project

The use of simulators in maritime education is a fundamental tool that provide realistic exercises and effective training of students. Currently the exercises are conducted on simulators that are located at campus, and rely on the physical attendance of both students and instructors. The instructors run real time exercises and apply a variation of pedagogical methods to instruct, assess and give feedback to the students. As this is very time consuming and with a limited number of simulators and instructors, a challenge is that each student has few exercises during their studies.

The maritime industry and equipment suppliers are in an era of digitalization, and the educational institutions must take advantage of the new technology to qualify the students for the future demands and challenges in their maritime professions. One of the novelties in maritime training and education are cloud-based simulators. Here, students can log on to an online platform and conduct simulator exercises from any location. This provides an opportunity to increase the number of exercises during their education, and to run the same exercise repeatedly to potentially increase their skills and knowledge.

Research is needed to investigate how the use of cloud-based simulators in combination with the physical simulators at campus can result in improved learning outcome for the students. This project will be based on comparative, qualitative studies of the use of cloud-based simulators in maritime Bachelor educations, with focus on learning and assessment practices. Development of models, methods and tools of learning activities, assessment, feedback and performance measures will be essential deliverables in the PhD project.

Relevant research questions are, but are not limited to:

  • What characterize the learning and assessment methods of cloud-based simulator training versus physical simulators at campus?
  • How do students make use of cloud-based and physical simulators regarding opportunities for choosing various locations and repeat excersices?
  • What kind of opportunities and challenges do participants experience while engaging with cloud-based simulators?
  • How do instructors/teachers make use of cloud-based simulators in their teaching and assessment practices?


Applicants to the PhD position are expected to have a maritime operational background. The applicant must have a Master’s degree (120 ECTS) or equivalent higher education qualifications in a relevant field with an average grade B or better from the Master degree, in addition to a grade B or better of the final master project. The applicants must have gained their Master’s degree within date of commencement. Relevant fields of expertise could be either within Pedagogy or Maritime Education. Other qualifications may also be considered. Teaching experience will be considered an advantage.

Applicants must master written and oral English. Applicants with Scandinavian language may be preferred. Experience in research activities and peer reviewed publications will be considered as an advantage.

In addition to formal qualifications, the candidate must have a personal motivation for research, ability to work independently and focused ability to work in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams. The candidate should have the competence, willingness and interest in learning the relevant areas to the PhD projects and associated areas within and across COAST. Cooperation between staff members is an integrated part of the working atmosphere at the University of South-Eastern Norway.

Personal suitability for the position will be emphasized. The candidate must be motivated and demonstrate a proven ability to work effectively within a team and in a collegiate manner to formulate and realize common objectives. The candidate must be motivated to share his or her knowledge and to collaborate closely within the COAST.

We offer

  • A professionally stimulating working environment
  • Good opportunities to develop your career and your academic skills
  • A good social environment
  • Attractive welfare benefits in the State Pension Plan
  • Opportunity for physical activities within working hours


PhD Research Fellow (code 1017): NOK 482 200 a year. Further promotion will be based on time served in the position.

In special cases, employment in code 1378 (NOK 458 900 – 618 600 a year) may be considered.

A statutory contribution to the state pension plan will be deducted from the employee’s salary.

Other information

Appointment to the position will be carried out by The Appointments Board for PhD Research Fellows. An expert assessment of applicants will be carried out. Short-listed candidates will be called in for interviews and must be prepared to present and discuss their projects.

The successful applicant must comply with the laws, regulations and agreements that apply to the position.

As an equal opportunities employer we welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and transgender status. All appointments are made on merit.

There are few women employed in research positions at the Department, and consequently women are especially encouraged to apply.[1]

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information act § 25 2 paragraph, information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, even though the applicant has requested non-disclosure. The applicant will be informed if his/her request has been declined.

Contact information

For more information about the position, please contact:

  • Professor Salman Nazir (Scientific leader of CAOST), email/phone: [email protected] / +47 31009654 or
  • Head of Department Anne Kari Botnmark, email/phone: [email protected] / +47 31009022 or +47 99377872

For questions regarding the recruitment process, please contact:

How to apply

The University of South-Eastern Norway makes use of online application management. Applicants to the post must register their application and CV with enclosures online via the Jobbnorge recruitment portal by clicking on the link on the right-hand side – “Søk stillingen” (Apply for the post).

The following documents shall be attached to the online application:

  • Certified diplomas and certificates from university college/university
  • Master’s thesis
  • A 5-page (maximum) project description
  • Any scientific publications and a list of these
  • Three references (contact information)

Please note that all documents must be in a Scandinavian language or in English. Any translations must be certified.

Each applicant is responsible for ensuring that the required documentation has been uploaded with the application.

Apply for the post

Powered by Labrador CMS