Research Assistant (104222) . Job Reference: 1879245

University of Warwick

United Kingdom

September 21, 2021


Vacancy Type/Job category

Research Only




Competitive Salary


University of Warwick

Vacancy Overview

Full Time, Fixed Term Contract until 31 March 2022

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disabling neurological disease. Approximately 2.5 million individuals are affected worldwide, including 130,000 in the UK. The prognosis of MS varies widely across patients and hence there is an urgent need to find a robust and personalised monitoring method that is effective in predicting clinical course and thereby optimising treatment in individual patients. Recent studies have reported significant olfactory and gustatory dysfunction in MS patients. This was found to be related with higher disability index and faster disease progression. This project, in collaboration with UHCW neurologists, will:

1. Determine which flavours (a combination of tastes and aromas) are most likely to be affected in early MS and predict disability progression 2. Analyse these real flavours and create accurate simulations of them using food safe chemicals 3. Evaluate the efficacy of a Flavour Based Test (FBT) for MS through a 6-month longitudinal study

Key Phrases: Longitudinal study, flavour based test for healthcare, olfactory and gustatory dysfunction

We will provide a great range of benefits which include an attractive pension scheme, 26 days holiday plus bank holidays and Christmas closure, some fantastic savings on a wide range of products and services, and excellent learning and development opportunities.

At WMG we are committed to supporting staff to achieve their potential. We currently hold the Athena SWAN Silver Award and the University of Warwick holds an Institutional Silver Award: a national initiative that recognises the advancement of gender equality, representation, progression and success for all in academia. We are supportive of staff with caring responsibilities including a generous maternity/paternity/adoption/parental leave policy, and onsite childcare facilities. We will consider applications for employment on a part-time or other flexible working basis, even where a position is advertised as full-time, unless there are operational or other objective reasons why it is not possible to do so.

Close date: 1 week from advert

Job Description


Undertaking research in order to support the work of the department and develop and enhance its reputation, both internally and externally. Assisting the Project Leader and, where appropriate, project collaborators in the successful execution of the project.



• Assist with a longitudinal cohort study that will include collection of data on clinical symptomatology. • Assist with evaluation of specific flavours for early detection of hyposmia and/or dysgeusia. • Comprehensive literature review

Research and scholarship

1. Undertake basic research, for example by preparing, setting up, conducting and recording the outcome of experiments and field work, developing questionnaires and conducting surveys. 2. Conduct literature and database searches. 3. Continue to update knowledge and develop skills. 4. Write up results of own research. 5. Contribute to the production of research reports and publications.

Teaching and Learning Support

1. Assist in the supervision of student projects. 2. Give demonstrations to students. 3. Could be expected to contribute to introductory courses, for example on the use of research methods and equipment.

Administration and Other Activities

1. Participate in department life and may be required to attend departmental meetings. 2. Ensure compliance with health and safety in all aspects of work. 3. Work within budget constraints.

Person Specification

The Person Specification focuses on the knowledge, skills, experience and qualifications required to undertake the role effectively. This is measured by (a) Application Form, (b) Test/Exercise, (c) Interview, (d) Presentation.

Essential Criteria 1

Good honours degree or equivalent (a)

Essential Criteria 2

Ability to perform basic statistical analysis of a 'clinical dataset' (a, c, d)

Essential Criteria 3

Ability to oversee acquisition of patient data in clinical setting (a, c, d)

Essential Criteria 4

Ability to undertake comprehensive literature review (a, c, d)

Essential Criteria 5

A developing research profile with the ability to publish and/or produce high quality research output (a, c)

Essential Criteria 6

Sufficient breadth or depth of specialist knowledge in the discipline and of research methods and techniques to work within own area (a, c, d)

Essential Criteria 7

Strong research potential with the ability or potential to publish high quality work in relevant field (a, c)

Essential Criteria 8

Range of quantitative and/or qualitative research skills (a, c)

Essential Criteria 9

Understanding of equal opportunity issues as they may impact on areas of research content (a, c)

Essential Criteria 10

Able to work autonomously and as part of a team (a, c)

Essential Criteria 11

Good interpersonal and communication skills, written and verbal (a, c, d)

Essential Criteria 12

A flexible approach to working (a, c)

Desirable Criteria 1

Good MSc in health related discipline (a)

Desirable Criteria 2

Ability to contribute towards written reports, papers and presentations for different target audiences (a, c)

Further Particulars


For further information about the University of Warwick, please read our University Further Particulars.

For further information about the department, please visit the departmental website.


The University of Warwick provides an inclusive working and learning environment, recognising and respecting every individual's differences. We welcome applications from individuals who identify with any of the protected characteristics defined by the Equality Act 2010.

Right to work in the UK If you do not yet have the right to work in the UK and/or are seeking sponsorship for a Skilled Worker visa in the UK points-based immigration system please click on this link which contains further information about obtaining right to work in the UK and details about eligibility for sponsorship for a Skilled Worker Visa.

Recruitment of Ex-Offenders Policy

As an organisation using the (DBS) Disclosure and Barring Service to assess applicants' suitability for positions of trust, the University of Warwick complies with the DBS Code of Practice and undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a Disclosure on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed. More information is available on the University's Vacancy pages and applicants may request a copy of the DBS Code of Practice.

Closing Date

21 Sep 2021