PhD Studentship: In Multilingual Speech Recognition at University of Sheffield

Posted on Jun 19, 2020 in Job Opportunities in Acoustics

Closing date for applications: 24 July 2020

We are delighted to be able to offer one fully funded PhD in Multilingual Speech Recognition to start in October 2020. The studentship covers  tuition fees (either Home/EU or Overseas) and an annual tax-free maintenance stipend at the standard UK Research rate (£15,285 in 2020-21) for up to three years.

This studentship project will be focusing on developing novel methods for the construction of automatic speech recognisers that are capable of transcribing speech in multiple languages. The motivation for multilingual speech recognition is two-fold. Building recognisers is difficult for many languages where low amounts of data are available for training. In these low resource settings, a strategy is to reuse recognition models trained on other languages. The second motivation is that switching between two or even more languages (so called code-switching) is common in many cultures. Recognisers that are capable of handling the complex acoustic and linguistic relationships between multiple languages are required. Multilingual speech recognition has recently seen increased interest with promising novel neural modelling techniques. The objective for this project is specifically to work on large groups of languages and improve generalisation.  The precise project formulation will be finalised in collaboration with the successful candidate.

The successful candidate will be part of the Voicebase Centre for Speech and Language Technology at the University of Sheffield, under the supervision of Prof. Thomas Hain, and work in close collaboration with the post-doctoral researchers in the group.

The Voicebase Centre for Speech and Language Technology was established in 2018 to conduct research in novel methods for speech recognition, including end-to-end modelling, direct waveform modelling and new approaches to acoustics and language modelling. The Centre hosts several RAs, PhD researchers, graduate and undergraduate students, and academic visitors, as well as Researchers and Engineers from Voicebase. Voicebase’s mission is to be a centre of excellence for research, scientific rigour and good collaboration within the centre and with researchers and outside of the University.

The successful candidate will also become a member of the Speech and Hearing (SpandH) research group and its subgroup on Machine Intelligence for Natural Interfaces (MINI) in the Department of Computer Science.

Applications:

We are seeking an enthusiastic individual with a minimum 2.1 undergraduate (BSc) and/or postgraduate masters’ qualification (MSc) in Computer Science or closely related subject.

To apply for the project, applicants need to apply directly to the University of Sheffield using the online application system. Complete an application for admission to the standard Computer Science PhD programme

www.sheffield.ac.uk/postgraduate/research/apply

Please name Professor Thomas Hain as your proposed supervisor.

Applications should include a research proposal, transcripts and two references. The research proposal (up to 4 A4 pages, including references) should outline your reasons for applying for this project and how you would approach the researching, including details of your skills and experience.

If English is not your first language, you must have an IELTS score of 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in each component.

For further details please contact Prof. Hain (t.hain@sheffield.ac.uk).

Funding:

International students are eligible to apply, however will have to pay the difference between the UK/EU and Overseas tuition fees.