Research Students

PhD Places - doing a PhD at the Open University

PhD Topics
I am very happy to talk informally with people considering undertaking a PhD. Please get in touch by email (s.holland at-sign-here, or write, or telephone my secretary. Fully Funded full-time PhD scholarships are competitive, but there are typically opportunities every year. We are also experienced in, and highly successful at, supervising part time PhD students.

Current Research Students

Dmitri Katz
Dmitri is a designer, consultant, researcher and activist working on ubiquitous computing for mobile health management, with a particular emphasis on devising new mobile health technologies for diabetes.

Theodoros Georgiou
Theodoros is investigating the design and evaluation of wearable wireless haptic systems for improving the lives of those with sensory or motor sisabilities. He has carried out gait rehabilitation studies with stroke survivors in collaboration with research teams from Warwick and Manchester Metro universities, and has published in Pervasive Health. He has a masters by research from the University of York in human haptic perception in the real and virtual environment.

Matt Bellingham
Matt’s PhD research is investigating user interface design for the democratisation of end-user algorithmic software. Matt is a Lecturer in Music Technology at the University of Wolverhampton and has worked as an engineer and producer since 1996, engineering and producing recordings for both major and independent labels. As a guitarist he has signed recording and publishing contracts and has toured the UK and northern Europe.

Tom Mudd
Tom is a doctoral student in the Music Computing Lab looking at ways in which dynamical systems can be employed in HCI, and more specifically, how they might alter engagement with digital musical instruments.

Tony Steffert
Tony is a PhD student in the Music Computing Lab investigating the sonification of EEG and physiological data to better support therapeutic and diagnostic interventions. Tony has a first class degree and numerous publications. He has worked as a Research Assistant at Imperial College London, a Research Fellow at Goldsmiths, and as a freelance researcher/technician consultant with other universities including Graz Tech University, Hertfordshire and Barcelona Pompeu Fabra.

Graduated PhD Students

Oliver Hödl
Oliver Hödl was awarded his doctorate in 2016. He is based in the Human Computer Interaction Group at the Vienna University of Technology and was supervised internally by Geraldine Fitzpatrick In Vienna and externally by Simon Holland at the Open University. Oliver’s thesis focuses on musical performances with a focus on interaction design, new musical instruments and audience participation. Oliver has composed and performed music for more than a decade as a multi-disciplinary artist and researcher with a strong interest in music and multimedia. His novel instruments and interactive concerts have lead to performances throughout Europe, USA and Australia.

Vassilis Angelis
Vassilis Angelis was awarded his PhD in 2014. His research focuses on validation and analysis of a computational model of gradient frequency neural network, which is also used to model human perception of musical rhythm. .

Katie Wilkie
Katie was awarded her PhD in 2014. Katie is researching the use of conceptual metaphors as a means to evaluate and inform the design of innovative and intuitive music interactions. Her research interests include cognitive understanding of musical concepts, embodied cognition and HCI. Katie's Research.

Allan Seago
PhD 2010 ‘New User Interfaces for Musical Timbre’.
The user interface of most synthesisers tends to be expressed in system (i.e. engineering) terminology, obliging the user to become fluent with the synthesis method employed. This causes problems for many users.The New User Interfaces for Musical Timbre Design Project involves the design, implementation , and evaluation of a prototype of a new kind of user interface for controlling musical timbre that addresses this problem in a principled way.

Patrick Hill
PhD 2007 ‘Aspect Oriented Music Representation(AOMR)’.
AOMR investigates ways in which Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP) and Multi-Dimensional Separation of Concerns (MDSOC) approaches can be applied to the organization of musical materials for the purposes of music composition and musical analysis.

Martina Wilson
PhD 2002 ‘The Use of Electronic Media in Teaching’.

Ian Kelly
PhD 2002 ‘An Evolutionary Design Interaction Approach to Computer Aided Colour Design’.

John Cook
PhD 1998 ‘Knowledge Mentoring Framework for Supporting Musical Composition Learning‘.
A theoretical framework, called the Knowledge Mentoring framework (KMf), was developed to investigate how studies of dialogue and interaction can be exploited in a practical way by designers of computer-based teaching agents. The KMf provides a taxonomy and definitions of the pedagogical goals involved in a 'mentoring' style of teaching. Mentoring is an approach to teaching that aims to support learners' creative, metacognitive and critical thinking, these being essential to musical composition and other open-ended, problem-seeking domains.
Knowledge Mentoring for Supporting Musical Composition Learning

Matt Smith
PhD 1995 ‘Artificial Intelligence, Melody and Education'.
Smith’s constraint-based learning tool MOTIVE is designed to support beginners to explore the composition of melody. In order to achieve this aim, Smith developed an engine within MOTIVE which remains the most complete computational model of Narmour’s (1989) cognitive theory of melody, Artificial Intelligence, Melody and EducationArtificial Intelligence, Melody and Education

Examining PhDs

I have examined numerous PhDs in the Disciplines of Computer Science, Music, Artificial Intelligence, Psychology, Physics, and the Learning Sciences.