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CREATE Training Program in Vision Science & Applications

Program Information

The CREATE Training Program in Vision Science & Applications consists of 6 additional training modules:

1. Interdisciplinary Rotation & Internship.
All Ph.D. and Postdoctoral trainees will be required to do an interdisciplinary internship of 3–6 months duration either in another laboratory of the CREATE team or with an external collaborator in industrial, government, or academic sectors. Through this internship the trainees will broaden their experience and gain practical knowledge and marketable skills in a complementary research approach. The internship will also foster collaboration between the trainees' home laboratories and the internship hosts, including possible co-­- supervision of theses. Additional funding will be provided for students wishing to do internships abroad.

2. Unique Interdisciplinary Vision Science Curriculum.
All graduate students will be required to take at least one course in at least two of the three core areas of vision science: 1) neuroscience, 2) psychophysics, 3) computation. All graduate students must also enroll in BIOL 5149, Applications of Vision Science (postdoctoral fellows are also expected to attend). This course, unique in Canada, consists of a series of one-­-week training units on different applications of vision science, each led by a different member of the CREATE team. The course will also include guest lectures by scientists and engineers from our industry and government collaborators. The course project will involve teams of students from different disciplinary backgrounds, addressing an application of vision science. Student presentations will be recorded and reviewed with mentors to augment communications training.

3. Annual Boot Camp on Applications of Vision Science.
Each trainee must attend a one-­-week Boot Camp in Vision Science & Applications, which will be held annually, bringing together undergraduate, postgraduate and postdoctoral trainees with representatives from our industrial, government and academic collaborators. Days 1 and 2 will consist of lectures and discussion of the key application areas, led by invited experts. Day 3 will involve presentations by all of the trainees. Day 4 will consist of a hands-­-on laboratory at the Visual Assessment Facility in York's new Sherman Health Science Research Centre. The final day will be focused on professional development training by invited experts, including presentations and activities on: legal and ethical issues in vision science, entrepreneurship, communications and management skills. The workshop will also provide opportunity for informal discussion between trainees and collaborators, facilitating the planning of internships and transition to employment.

4. Public Speaking Requirement.
Trainees will be required to give at least one public lecture on their research and its relevance to society. Trainees will select from three options: 1) A lecture at the site of an industrial or government collaborator. 2) A lecture at a Toronto high school (members of the CREATE team have already established these links). 3) An open lecture to York undergraduates in Psychology, Biology, and Computer Science & Engineering.

5. Site Visits.
All trainees will participate in annual visits to industrial and government sites near Toronto (e.g., IMAX, NRC Flight Research Lab, Defense Research and Development Canada, Canadian Space Agency) for demonstrations and discussions of developing vision science technologies.

6. CVR International Vision Conference.
The CVR hosts a biennial International Conference on Vision. This conference will be incorporated into the proposed training program: all collaborators will be invited, and trainees will be required to attend and present a poster on their work.