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Department of Computer Science

Digital Multimedia and Human Memory

Primary supervisor

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Other projects with the same supervisor


  • Competition Funded Project (Students Worldwide)

This research project is one of a number of projects at this institution. It is in competition for funding with one or more of these projects. Usually the project which receives the best applicant will be awarded the funding. Applications for this project are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full department and project details for further information.

Project description

Human memory is an important element of our cognition, impacting our ability to work effectively, engage with others, and maintain our own self-identity. For centuries, we have used a wide range of technologies, techniques and artefacts to augment our natural capacity for memory ??? storytelling and heirlooms have helped us share knowledge and experiences from generation to generation, written language allows us to produce to-do lists and records of our activities, and photographs help us remember how
people and objects appeared in the past.

Innovation in digital multimedia has transformed the artefacts that we collect about both our everyday experiences and special occasions. For example, family photograph albums containing generations of carefully posed birth and wedding have been replaced with large-scale uncurated collections of digital photographs captured in an adhoc fashion on smartphones and other devices.

Whilst concerns have been raised about digital preservation (i.e. how do we ensure that these new digital artefacts aren???t lost or destroyed), there has been limited research effort centred on the changes that new multimedia artefacts are having on our capacity to remember. This PhD would look to address the gap in current research with regard to the role of digital multimedia on human memory. The project would develop our understanding of how technology may already be changing the way that we remember and look to establish new approaches to prevent technology-driven human memory degredation.

Person specification

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Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You must be capable of performing at a very high level.
  • You must have a self-driven interest in uncovering and solving unknown problems and be able to work hard and creatively without constant supervision.


Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You will possess determination (which is often more important than qualifications) although you'll need a good amount of both.
  • You will have good time management.


Applicants will be required to address the following.

  • Discuss your final year Undergraduate project work - and if appropriate your MSc project work.
  • How well does your previous study prepare you for undertaking Postgraduate Research?
  • Comment on your transcript/predicted degree marks, outlining both strong and weak points.
  • Why do you believe you are suitable for doing Postgraduate Research?