Graduate Technical Assistant (Env& Geo Sciences and PhD Studentship)

University of Northampton

Northampton, UK 🇬🇧

Posting date:11 October 2021
Salary:£27,924 to £34,304 per year, pro rata
Hours:Part time
Closing date:07 November 2021
Location:Northampton, Northamptonshire
Company:University of Northampton
Job type:Temporary
Job reference:UN3833


About the Job

Part time – 18.5 hours per week

Fixed term for up to 4 years

Interview date – 24 November 2021

The post requires you to undertake Technician Demonstrator duties (0.5FTE) related to Environmental and Geographical Sciences.

You will also register to undertake a PhD looking at the implications of catchment connectivity on sediment and/or ecology in lowland England under the supervision of team including Dr Christopher Holt and Prof. Ian Foster. The fees for the four-year duration of the PhD will be fully covered by the University.

The technical aspect of the role will involve day to day management of the Environmental and Geographical laboratories and associated resources, as well as demonstrating laboratory practical and fieldwork activities across the subject area and supporting the use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

The PhD project will require you to have a strong understanding of physical geography or environmental science with a focus on hydrology, geomorphology or ecology. The project will be on the implications of catchment connectivity on sediment and/or ecology over the late Holocene in lowland England. The project will comprise of substantial field and lab work as well as using GIS (experience of using ARCGIS Pro would be advantageous). This research will involve looking at the geomorphological, hydrological or ecological impacts of connectivity (e.g. weir removal) in a moderate sized river catchment (Rother and Lod) in the south of England. GIS could be used to allow the pinpointing of possible mitigation strategies as well as land use changes and impacts. It would be expected that the project will also include historical catchment changes. The supervisory team are already collaborating with the Environment Agency who are currently supporting a pilot project and would provide core sediment monitoring on the Rother and Lod catchments for the duration of the project. Additional support would be provided by the Arun and Rother Rivers Trust, Southern Water and the South Downs National Park Authority, the latter of whom funded a recent PhD based at Northampton on which this project will build. Southern Water have funded an ongoing project on mapping and modelling field to river connectivity involving Northampton and Oxford Universities.

The applicant will be asked to create a two-page proposal for this research at the University of Northampton. For information on what is required for the research proposal and it’s layout please go to

If you would like to find out about or arrange an informal visit to the lab facilities please contact Valerie Graham ([email protected]). To discuss the PhD aspect please contact Dr Chris Holt ([email protected]) or Prof. Ian Foster ([email protected]).

About you

You will have a 2.1 or 1st class BSc (hons) or equivalent in Geography, Environmental Science or associated discipline with a focus on hydrology, geomorphology or ecology. A Masters degree in a relevant discipline, knowledge of ARCGIS Pro and previous technical experience in Further or Higher Education would be an advantage.

You will have good written and verbal communication, well developed time management, excellent organisation skills and a cut through approach to completing tasks. Good IT skills, including competence in standard Microsoft 365 software packages and appropriate statistical packages e.g. Minitab or SPSS are also required.



Degree in Geography, Environmental Science or related discipline (minimum of 2.1 hons or equivalent).


Master’s degree in Geography, Environmental Science or a related discipline

Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology

You will join a collegiate team, based in the Faculty of Arts, Science & Technology, with a strong culture of student-focused teaching and high impact research. This is a particularly good time to join us at the University, having recently achieved Gold in the Teaching Excellence Framework. The Environmental Science and Geography team have recently validated a BSc in Climate Change.

The University moved to our new £330 million Waterside Campus in 2019 based in Northampton town. Therefore, you will benefit from new purpose-built laboratories and research facilities, a supportive team, and well established and sustainable links with our regional partners.

The team are committed to delivering super supportive programmes and were awarded 100% overall satisfaction in the 2020 National Student Survey. Fieldwork is considered an important part of our provision and we are currently reviewing our fieldwork provision.

Right to Work

All candidates will be asked to provide proof of eligibility to work in the UK at interview.


We are proud of our diverse student population and applications from Black Asian Minority Ethnic student grow year on year. Equality and the promotion of inclusion are a key value that we are proud to promote. To embed this across the University, to achieve diversity amongst its staff and to improve staff representation, we would like to encourage applications from women, people living with disabilities, and those from the LGBT+ and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities.

Proud member of the Disability Confident employer scheme