Smart flooring solutions for fall protection

This studentship will investigate how novel flooring materials address the challenges of balance and gait in an older population.

Start date

1 October 2023


3 years

Application deadline

Funding source

University of Surrey

Funding information

The studentship will cover University fees and a stipend (£15,400) for 3 years in addition to £1,000 per annum to be spent on research and training for the student.


Falls in an older population can have a profound impact on the individuals affected and are a significant cost to the health service.

This project will look at the interactions between older individuals and novel flooring designed to prevent falls and limit the consequences of falls when they happen.

The studentship will include physical experiments investigating the flooring’s impact on static balance. Subsequently, physical experiments will be performed to understand how the flooring affects gait and whether it increases the chances of, for example, tripping.

An exciting combination of biomedical engineering and engineering materials will be provided by the PhD. It will be running as part of a wider project that is developing the flooring solutions. Consequently, the PhD student will be part of the wider team and providing crucial insight. The PhD’s contribution will include initial analysis of the flooring’s properties as well as its final implementation and testing in the University of Surrey’s human movement laboratory.

The project will offer the chance to interact with colleagues at the University of Surrey, University of Portsmouth and in industry.

Supervision will be provided by both Dr Matthew Oldfield and Dr Iman Mohagheghian.

This supervisory team reflects the multidisciplinary nature of the project and spans the Centre for Biomedical Engineering and the Centre for Engineering Materials.

Interested candidates are warmly encouraged to contact either Dr Oldfield or Dr Mohaghegian for further details about the studentship.

Eligibility criteria

A 2.1 degree or above in a relevant subject at undergraduate or taught postgraduate level. This project is funded for UK-based students. In exceptional circumstances, applications may be considered from high-calibre overseas students. However, current funding is only guaranteed for those students who are UK-based. International applicants will need to demonstrate their high-calibre in addition to meeting all entry requirements.

English language requirements

IELTS Academic: 6.5 or above (or equivalent) is required, with no sub-test score less than 6.

How to apply

Formal applications can be made through our Biomedical Engineering PhD programme page. In your application you must mention this studentship in order to be considered.

Informal applicant enquiries are recommended prior to submission and can be directly made to Dr Iman Mohagheghian.

Applications should be made through the University’s website. Applications made by email cannot be considered.

All applications must include a current CV, transcripts for most relevant undergraduate and, where applicable, postgraduate qualifications, two references or contact details for two referees.  

Studentship FAQs

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Application deadline

Contact details

Matthew Oldfield
17 AA 02
Telephone: +44 (0)1483 684402

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