PhD Student in Computing Science

Umeå University

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PhD Student
in Computing Science

The Department of Computing Science is looking for a PhD student within the project Syntactical methods for text classification.

Text classification is a central task in language technology with applications in sentiment analysis, plagiarism detection, spam filters, authorship attribution, and writing aids. Classification systems typically employ batteries of features such as function words, n-grams, and punctuation to separate between categories. This projects aims to promote the use of syntactical information in text classification, in other words, to learn more about texts from their grammatical structure.

The student will participate in the development of algorithms for text classification. Here, both deductive and empirical instruments are of use. The student is expected to contribute to the derivation of formal proofs for properties such as termination, correctness, and complexity, and to assist in the implementation and experimental evaluations of the developed algorithms. A successful project would give us new knowledge about how syntactical information can be used for different applications, and help improve system performance in a range of text classification tasks.

Admission requirements

Successful candidates should preferably have earned an MSc degree or similar in computer science or some other field relevant for the position (MSc students soon to complete their theses may also be considered). The recruitment procedure for the position is in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance (Högskoleförordningen Chapter 5 and 7). Prerequisites include 240 ECTS credits (Swe. högskolepoäng) of higher education studies of which 60 should be on an advanced level (Master level) or equivalent competence. The special requirement is 90 ECTS-credits in computer science.

The applicant should be well versed in theoretical computer science, in particular formal language theory, and have good programming skills. The applicant must be proficient in English, both spoken and written. Knowledge in linguistics, computational linguistics, or statistics is an additional qualification.

The application should contain a letter wherein the applicant describes her- or himself, relevant qualifications, and interests. The application should also contain a Corriculum Vitae, copies of relevant documents, a copy or summary of the applicant’s Masters thesis (or equivalent), and contact information to two persons willing to act as references. Scientific publications, if any, should be included to strengthen the application.


For general information, please contact the PhD programme coordinator, Frank Drewes, at Phone +46(0)90-786 97 90, or by e-mail,

For more information about the specific position, please contact the project leader, Johanna Björklund, at Phone +46(0)90-786 79 27, or by e-mail

Union information is available from SACO, +46-(0)90-786 53 65, SEKO, +46-(0)90-786 52 96 and ST, +46-(0)90-786 54 31.

Documents sent electronically should be in MS Word or PDF format.

Your complete application, marked with reference number 313-536-13, should be sent to (state the reference number as subject) or to the Registrar, Umeå University, SE-901 87 Umeå, Sweden to arrive June 27, 2013 at the latest.

We look forward to receiving your application!