The Boston Attention and Learning Lab is looking to hire a full-time research assistant for a project characterizing the cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying trauma-related conditions in Post-9/11 Veterans, with a start date in summer 2021. Please see attached flyer for further details, and direct any questions to Dr. Joseph DeGutis () and Dr. Michael Esterman ().


Objectives: 1) To characterize differences in clinical, functional, cognitive, and neural trajectories in a large database of post-9/11 Veterans. 2) To use fMRI to better characterize trauma-related cognitive impairments and clinical disorders, such as PTSD and suicidality. 3) To collect data characterizing inhibitory control ability using emotional and non-emotional stimuli and examine how this relates to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicidal thoughts and behaviors, sleep, and traumatic brain injury.


Description: This position will entail being an integral team member in a large, comprehensive longitudinal project, the Translational Research Center for TBI and Stress Disorders ( This project has involved over 900 post-9/11 Veterans across multiple time points over the last 13 years. In particular, the research assistant will perform behavioral analyses to help better understand the long-term consequences of combat exposure and identify vulnerability or protective factors related to poor clinical/functional outcomes. They will also work with task-based and resting-state fMRI data also collected in this longitudinal sample of Veterans, to answer questions about how brain function can reveal subtypes of PTSD, as well as predict treatment outcomes, symptom chronicity, risk for suicide, and disability. Besides data analysis, this position will also involve running Veteran participants through a clinical and cognitive battery to better characterize the role of inhibitory control mechanisms (using hot/emotional and cold/non-emotional stimuli) in PTSD, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, sleep, and traumatic brain injury. Notably, the RA will have chances to author papers and present their work at local and national conferences. This position will be based at VA Boston Healthcare System in Jamaica Plain. The position will provide an excellent opportunity for training in the fields of cognitive neuroscience, clinical psychology, and neuropsychology, and will uniquely prepare the individual for clinical, cognitive, or neuroscience graduate school programs.


Background required: College degree in psychology, neuroscience or related field and interest in making a career in such a field. Previous research experience.


Skills required: The candidate must be highly organized and have excellent people skills. Technical skills such as knowledge of statistical methods and programming are also a plus.


Start date: We are looking for someone who can start in the summer of 2021 and commit to two years. 


Salary: $39,268 plus full benefits


Deadline for Applications: May 1, 2021 


If interested, please contact Dr. Joe DeGutis () and Dr. Michael Esterman ().