Category / PG research

This part of the blog features news and information for postgraduate research students and supervisors

Dash7 for remote patient monitoring via mobile phone

We would like to invite you to the next research seminar of the Creative Technology Research Centre that will be delivered by Andrew Yearp.

TitleDash7 for remote patient monitoring via mobile phone

Time: 2:00PM-3:00PM

Date: Wednesday 26th March 2014

Room: P302 (Poole House, Talbot Campus)

Abstract: Wireless Remote patient monitoring systems provide an improved environment for hospital patients while expanding the range physiological information available to medical personnel. With these developments patients are now free from wires, but are still contained within the range of the wireless monitoring system. This seminar explores the application of Dash7 and mobile phone technologies in patient monitoring, particularly in hospital wards. The functionality of a prototype system which has been developed so far will be demonstrated during this seminar.

We hope to see you there,

 Dr. David John

2014 sees a surge in engagement with eBU

Through immediate internal publication and open peer review, eBU is ideally placed to support the developmental needs of authors at any career stage, and I’m pleased to say that, so far, the 2014 issue has seen a levels of engagement from across the career spectrum. eBU has had two working paper submissions so far in 2014 (and there are plenty more in the archived 2013 issue!).

Firstly, under the Lifelong Health and Wellbeing theme, Sheetal Sharma (HSC) and colleagues submitted a paper titled Eliciting Nepali women’s views on childbirth and the newborn. A full text file of this paper has been openly reviewed and can be viewed here – http://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/17.  I understand Sheetal has just submitted this paper to an external journal, so best of luck and we await with great excitement to hear the outcome!

Secondly, under the Education, Learning and Practice theme, Jonathan Williams (again HSC) has submitted a paper titled Is student knowledge of anatomy affected by a Problem-Based Learning approach? A full text file of this paper can be read here – http://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/24.

eBU was also delighted to be able to support outputs from the 2014 PGR conference, and a number of PGRs have decided to use eBU to showcase their work. Why not take a look at the following abstracts and posters:

Business, Entrepreneurship and Economic Growth

Alice Bonasio – PGR Conf 2014 Abstract: Customer Engagement Through Crowd-Funding and Social Mediahttp://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/21

Lifelong Health and Wellbeing

Ben Hicks – PGR Conf 2014 Abstract: Using commercial computer game technology to benefit men with dementia residing in rural areas of Dorsethttp://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/19

Sheetal Sharma – PGR Conf 2014 Abstract: Pregnant and ‘dirty’ for 40 days: A qualitative study of childbirth practice, beliefs and myths in Nepalhttp://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/20

Jonny Branney – PGR Conf 2014 Abstract: Is spinal manipulation associated with changes in cervical inter-vertebral motion?http://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/23

Research Methods and Practice

Jenny Roddis – PGR Conf 2014 Poster: Experience of interviewing: face-to-face vs. telephonehttp://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/22

Technology & Design

Manuel Salvador – PGR Conf 2014 Poster: Automating Data Pre-processing for Online and Dynamic Processes in the Chemical Industry: http://ebu/index.php/ebu/article/view/18

Sustainable Design Research Centre – Faculty of Science & Technology Research Seminar

Date: 02/04/2014

Time: 12:00 – 12:30

Venue: PG 22

Title: Renewable energy goes global – what is wrong with the wind turbines?


As a fast growing renewable energy source, wind turbines have undergone significant development over the past thirty years providing a suitable portion of renewable energy in many countries. However, the world’s demand for wind energy supply will continue to increase in the next five to ten years. To increase the production efficiency, wind turbine manufacturers have been focusing on the increase of output power from individual turbines. Larger and heavier gearboxes are being put up ‘in the air’ (on the top of high towers), which has unfortunately been accompanied by an escalation of tribological issues related to wear and lubrication in the drivetrain systems. The unsatisfactory performance and reliability of wind turbines are threatening the sustainability of wind energy globally. Wind turbine failure, white structure flaking (WSF), has been found to limit the lives of a large number of wind turbine gearboxes from the design life of over 20 years to as short as 6 months to 2 years and the premature failure has a huge impact on the reliability of wind turbines and the cost of wind energy due to its frequent occurrences and high cost involved (at £300k per gearbox replacement). This talk presents the research on WSF at University of Southampton.

Brief bio:

Dr Ling Wang is a lecturer in condition monitoring of tribological systems at the national Centre for Advanced Tribology at Southampton (nCATS), Engineering Sciences Academic Unit, Faculty of Engineering and the Environment since 2007. She has published over 80 peer reviewed papers and conducted collaborative research projects with a wide range of industrial partners including Rolls-Royce plc. GE Aviation, Vestas Wind Systems, Shell Global Solutions, Afton Chemical Corporation, BP and Agusta Westland.

These seminars are organised by the University Sustainable Design Research Centre in the Faculty of Science & Technology to provide a platform for disseminating latest research activities and results. These seminars are good opportunity of networking for both BU staff and students.

If you would like further information on research activities in corrosion, corrosion simulation and corrosion monitoring please visit SDRC webpage. For any specific inquiries please contact

Dr Zulfiqar Khan (Associate Professor)

Director Sustainable Design Research Centre

eBU news, updates and success story!

eBU news: updates and achievements

It’s been a while since I posted about eBU. Since my last post there has been some exciting updates and progress to report. There are some new faces to welcome, a reminder to encourage students to submit, news that eBU is supporting outputs from the PGR conference and will support outputs from an exciting new conference, and…  (drum roll…) a paper originally submitted to eBU has been published in an external journal!

Welcome aboard!

Heather Savigny has joined me as a co-editor. I have met with Heather a few times now, and it is obvious that she is passionate about developing writing and scholarly skills. On this basis, Heather is a perfect addition to the team. We have both met with the new PVC Prof John Fletcher, and I’m glad to say that, like his predecessor, he is very supportive of eBU. Shelly Maskell from R&KEO has also come aboard and will provide vital support in helping develop eBU.

Encourage students to submit

One immediate challenge for eBU is not appeal to students. eBU launched a bit too late last year to appeal to students who would have made important submissions at the end of last academic year (dissertations etc), but hopefully we will be well placed to appeal to them this year! So I urge all academic staff to encourage students who produce good quality to a) encourage them to spend a little bit more time and format their work into a publishable output and b) offer some support to this end.

PGR conference

eBU is well placed to help early career researchers and students make that leap into the ‘publish or perish’ world of academia. On this basis, it is a tool that PGRs should take advantage of. We are actively encouraging people who presented their work at the PGR conference to submit their work to eBU. We have received a good number of abstracts and posters already, and eBU will be a great platform to showcase this work BU wide. Outputs associated with the PGR conference to have deadlines, and these are:

  • Please submit posters before Friday 14th March.
  • Please submit abstracts before Friday 14th March.
  • Please submit conference papers before 12th April

I would encourage those who made an oral presentations to write it up as a conference paper. There is guidance for PGRs on myBU and on the Graduate School website, but do feel free to get in touch with any questions. We don’t generally set deadlines, so please remember that you can submit any other papers you might have in the pipeline (e.g. review papers) at any time, and we will guarantee a quick internal and open peer review.

Future scope

Congratulations to Luciana Esteves from ApSci, who has been successful in winning some Fusion funding to kick-start an annual undergraduate research conference at BU – SURE@BU. This is something to look out for in the future, but it is worth stating now that eBU will play a key role in the publication of conference abstracts, posters, conference papers etc.


I’m glad to report that one of the submissions to eBU has been published by an external journal, and I believe others will shortly follow suit. The successful paper in question is a paper that I wrote with colleagues. However, it is a useful little case study to illustrate how and why eBU works.

Myself and colleagues in HSC and outside (University of Exeter, University of Plymouth and Westbourne Medical Centre) submitted a grant application in the second half of last year. In most grant applications you have opportunity to summarise the key literature, and this one was no different. Unfortunately whilst the grant application was unsuccessful, I took a senior colleagues advice and spent a little bit of time turning the application into a paper. After a few weeks I submitted it to eBU (the phrase ‘put your money where your mouth is’ comes to mind!). As I had a bit of a vested interest it was processed by editorial colleagues and reviews were uploaded after a few weeks. It really helped having two sets of informed but fresh eyes scrutinise the paper, and changes were made on the basis of these reviews. The paper was submitted to a journal and accepted with suggestions for minor changes.

When I wrote this article I was a Research Assistant here and, like many early career researchers, I had aspirations of becoming published in peer reviewed journals. One of my trepidations was getting that first publication. I’m now a PhD student here, and I’m sure the floodgates will open (along with another colleague have since have had another accepted!) as I now have many ideas for potential papers and now – thanks to eBU – I have no fear of the unknown!

Andy Harding

Doctoral Researcher and eBU co-editor


Workshop on Streaming Analytics Thursday 13th March 10:30.

As part of a collaboration between BU and several other EU based universities and intitutions we will be hosting SAAT 2014 a workshop on the emerging area of streaming analytics. The workshop is open to all for the first day (the second day is taken up with management meetings). The focus of this workshop is on the technical aspects of how to provide streaming analytics.

Scalability and responsiveness of algorithms and architectures for large scale data streams are fundamental to harvesting the power of data generated in real-time networks. The workshop seeks to bring together industry and academic partners to explore specifically the requirements of data processing, the real-world target applications and develop from there the techniques required. The scope thus includes applications, scaling algorithms, streaming platforms, integration of streaming and batch algorithms, graph partitioning together with machine learning for streaming, concept drift and dynamic data analysis. Additional topics such as security issues and tool and platform development are of interest.

The key aims in this workshop are several fold. Primarily we seek to identify the key issues associated real world streams of data, including key target applications. Integrated  solutions, combining appropriate topics from the scope which target likely directions in this field is the end goal. Specifically, the aim of the workshop is to facilitate interaction as a crucible for consortium building in advance of Horizon 2020 (call 1.A.1.1 from the 2014-15 draft work programme.).

Organisers: Dr. Hamid Bouchachia(DEC) , Dr. Damien Fay (DEC)

PGR Development Fund – March Deadline

The PGR Development Fund closes at the end of this month, so if you are planning to attend a conference or research development activity over the coming months, don’t forget to submit an application for financial support to the Graduate School by 31st March.

Awards are available of up to £1,000 and will cover direct costs, such as – travel, subsistence, training or development costs.

Don’t forget you will need to seek the support of your Supervisory Team and Deputy Dean for Research, so please factor this in when submitting your application.  Completed applications should be emailed to by 5 pm31st March 2014.

Full details can be found on myBU – Graduate School PGR Community – remember you’ll need to log on with your student username and password.

PG Researcher Development Workshops – New Addition for March

WHAT’S ON in March 2014

Another workshop on Preparing for your First Review has been added to the list of  workshops this month:

  • Preparing for your Viva – 5 March 2014
  • Statistics: Regression Analysis – 6 March 2014
  • Introduction to Focus Groups – 14 March 2014
  • Looking for sources of Funding & How to Write a Research Proposal (for funding) – 17 March 2014
  • Preparing for your First Review – 19 March 2014 (AM)
  • Statistics: Factor Analysis – 19 March 2014 (PM)
  • Time Management – 24th March 2014 (AM)
  • How to Manage your Research Project – 24th March 2014 (PM)
  • Writing for Marketing – 26th March 2014

Full details and sign up lists are available via myBU (Graduate School PGR Community).

Don’t forget that if you have both staff and student email accounts, you’ll need to log on to myBU with your student username and regularly check your student email account for email reminders.

Why English Football Player Fail in Penalty Shootouts: German Sport Psychology Researcher Visiting BU

Recently, the Sport Academic Group hosted researcher Dr Philip Furley from its Erasmus partner institution German Sport University Cologne. Philip works for the Institute of Cognitive and Team/Racket Sport Research and has recently published studies in a number of fields like inattentional blindness and creativity, many of which funded by the prestigious German Research Foundation.

As part of his visit he discussed his work with a selected group of sport academics and postgraduate researchers in a workshop-style format. One of the studies looked into how non-verbal behaviour of athletes is a function of the current score, how this can be reliably interpreted by others – especially opponents who register this which in turn influences their confidence levels.

By extending this research into what Philip calls ‘pop science’, it can be explained why English footballers are more likely to fail in penalty shootouts based on empirical data. ‘Hastening and hiding’ behaviour as a consequence of psychological stress in the penalty situation leads, for example, to submissive non-verbal behaviour like turning your back to the goalkeeper after dropping the ball on the penalty spot and taking little time for the shot after the referee blows the whistle.

Further studies and discussions were around the dangers of coaching instructions to induce an attentional set that controls the focus of attention of athletes. It can lead to structured awareness not adaptive to dynamic situations – for example during on-field decision making which can lead to important information being overseen, like an opponent who ‘unexpectedly’ enters the space of a defender. It was discussed if there were parallels to the way university tutors may be used to structure and present material to students and how this forms their thinking.

“Bringing highly dedicated researchers from internationally leading institutions to BU is an important part of inspiring and guiding research at our university. Philip’s presentations were a fantastic example of work that is driven by deep academic curiosity and high process quality, and his visit has provoked much inspiration and discussion” says Dr Tim Breitbarth, Senior Lecturer and Coordinator Internationalisation in Sport.

eBU: Online Journal – Reminder to Publish your Posters or Abstracts from the recent PG Annual Conference

Don’t forget that a great opportunity exists for those who submitted abstracts (oral or poster) to get them published in BU’s online journal –  eBU.

Andy Harding, current PGR and eBU Journal Manager, Editor & Section Editor invites PGRs:

who presented work at the 2014 PGR conference to make submissions to eBU, including those that presented posters and abstracts. In addition, PGRs who delivered a presentation may also wish to consider writing up their presentation as a conference paper or even as another type of paper (e.g. a review paper). Regular eBU protocol is immediate internal publication and open peer review. However, a series of deadlines have been set for submission associated with the PGR conference, and on this occasion only conference papers will be reviewed. Authors of paper submissions are encouraged to use the feedback in order to increase their chances of publication in an external journal.

However, publishing abstracts and posters is also beneficial. Publishing abstracts and posters on eBU will open up the focus of your work to the whole university, and in the process make the BU community aware of the focus of your research. Should you choose, poster and abstract submissions, alongside papers that are not published externally, will be among the first publications on the external eBU site

Further details can be found on the Graduate School website and myBU (Graduate School PGR Community)

Towards Platform Agnostic Software Development for Games

We would like to invite you to the next research seminar of the Creative Technology Research Centre that will be delivered by Karsten Pedersen.


Title: Towards Platform Agnostic Software Development for Games

Time: 2:00PM-3:00PM                

Date: Wednesday 5th March 2014

Room: P302 (Poole House, Talbot Campus)


Abstract: With the rapid introduction and deprecation of mobile platforms it is becoming increasingly necessary to develop games in a portable manner so that as much work as possible is transferable between them. This talk looks towards changes which can be made to the development pipeline that can help create a game in a more platform agnostic manner, whilst still being able to utilize any unique features native to a device that the players will want to take advantage of. An explanation is provided of what DeepThought, the main tool facilitating all this, is and how it can be used to develop games in a modular and portable manner. The handling and inlining of different languages with a tool called Iffe will also be covered. Together, these two technologies can greatly simplify the development process by not just simply providing a cross platform game engine for existing platforms but also by providing a generic solution that can be adapted to any future technology.


We hope to see you there.

Networking opportunity with expert in Behaviour Change

To remind, we have Dr Falko Sniehotta from Newcastle University visiting on Tuesday 4th March (

There are spaces left on the workshop for those that would like to sign up for this free workshop (plus free lunch).

For those that cannot attend the workshop (10am – 12pm), but would like to informally talk with Falko during our networking lunch (12pm – 1pm), then you are most welcome to join us in PG146, Talbot campus (though lunch will only be provided for those on the workshop).

Falko is keen to discuss potential research collaborations with BU staff and so would welcome the opportunity to meet with colleagues.

PGR Development Fund

Don’t forget that the PGR Development Fund is OPEN for applications and is available to support all BU postgraduate researchers (PGRs) irrespective of the mode of study (full-time/part-time) or funding status (BU studentship/externally funded/self-funded/ VC PhD Scholarship).

Individual awards will provide financial support of normally up to £1,000 for research activities related to an individual PGR’s research project or personal development.  Examples of research activities covered by the Scheme include:

  • Conferences (to present – either poster or oral and you must provide evidence that you have submitted either a poster or oral abstract for consideration);
  • Research development e.g. attending external training events specific to your research project;
  • Personal development e.g. attending external personal development training events;
  • Organisation of an academic conference at BU with external participants;
  • Attendance at external networking events leading to advance of the research;
  • Meetings or networking events linking to publications or dissemination of research.

The closing date for applications is 17:00 hrs on 31st March 2014

Full details can be found on myBU – Graduate School PGR Community (Funding – Development & Mobility Awards Section)

If you have any questions about the PGR Development Fund, then please get in touch with the Graduate School Team.


Health, Well-Being & Society: New Wordle

The members of the Health, Wellbeing & Society theme have responded enthusiastically to the call to provide the five keys word reflecting their research interests and expertise.  The new Wordle above was created Feb. 13th from all of those key words.  Apart from presenting a pretty picture of colourful words, the Wordle provides a quick overview of the kind of research conducted by BU staff and PhD students affiliated with the theme.


Prof. Heather Hartwell leading the Health, Wellbeing & Society theme highlighted: “Our theme welcomes new members from across BU. This Wordle is, of course, snapshot in time.  We shall up-date the Wordle regularly to accommodate new members joining and existing members developing new research interests!”


Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwifery, Maternal and Perinatal Health