Computer Vision and Deep Learning for Automatic Sign Language Recognition, Translation and Production

Start date
1 January 2020
4 years
Application deadline
Funding source
Swiss National Science Foundation, however, the studentship will be based in the UK at the University of Surrey.
Funding information

This studentship is part of a larger project funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) called SMILE2 and is a successful continuation of our previous collaboration between the University of Surrey, IDIAP, HfH Zurich and the University of Zurich. The studentship covers the University tuition fees (at EU/UK level) and provides an annual tax-free stipend (rate for 2020-2021 is £15,285 p.a. tax-free).  It will also cover UK/EU fees. For exceptional candidates there is the opportunity that an additional bursary can be provided for the overseas tuition fees (currently £22K from Oct 2020) for students who are outside of the EU.


Applications are invited for a fully funded PhD studentship within the Centre for Vision Speech and Signal Processing at the University of Surrey. The funding is for a three-year research programme leading to the degree of PhD. The project will develop approaches to recognising and translating sign language into spoken language using Ai and deep learning, specifically sequence to sequence models.  

Related links
Professor Richard Bowden Centre for Vision, Speech and Signal Processing (CVSSP) C-Lab: Cognitive systems

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must have a First Class or Upper Second Honours degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) in an appropriate discipline (e.g., engineering, computer science, signal processing, applied mathematics, physics).

You should be able to demonstrate excellent mathematical, analytic, programming skills.

Previous experience in computer vision, machine/deep learning, or augmented reality would be advantageous. Experience of any national sign language would also be of great value.

UK and EU students only.

IELTS 6.5 or above (or equivalent) with no sub-test of less than 6.

How to apply

Formal applications should be made through the Vision, Speech and Signal Processing PhD course page making clear reference to the post and “Prof Bowden (CVSSP)”.

Informal enquiries should be sent to

Contact details

Richard Bowden
22 BA 00
Telephone: +44 (0)1483 689838

Centre for Vision, Speech and Signal Processing (CVSSP)

CVSSP is a leading UK research centre in audio-visual signal processing, computer vision and machine learning ranked 1st in the UK and 3rd in Europe for Computer Vision. Our Centre is one of the largest in Europe with over 170 researchers and a grant portfolio in excess of £24 million, bringing together a unique combination of cutting-edge sound and vision expertise. Our aim is to advance the state of the art in multimedia signal processing and computer vision, with a focus on image, video and audio applications. Our Centre has a robust track-record of innovative research leading to technology transfer and exploitation in biometrics, creative industries (film, TV, games, VR), communication, healthcare, robotics and consumer electronics.

CVSSP is a destination of choice for postgraduate talent and it is part of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering which is ranked second in the Guardian University Guide 2020The University of Surrey has recently been ranked 7th in the UK in the 2020 AdvanceHE Postgraduate Research Experience Survey (PRES).

C-Lab: Cognitive systems




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