Postgraduate study for the degree of PhD is offered within the Mixed-Reality Laboratory in computer science.
Postgraduates without sufficient training in computer science at first-degree level may be required to attend appropriate taught modules.The MRL is an interdisciplinary studio facility where computer scientists, psychologists, sociologists, engineers, architects and artists collaborate to explore the potential of ubiquitous, mobile and mixed reality technologies to shape everyday life.
The MRL was first established in 1999 with £1.2 million funding under the JREI programme and its facilities were updated in 2005 through a further £1 million under SRIF 2. The laboratory is currently home to over fifty academics, research associates and PhD students who are undertaking a wide ranging programme of research into mixed reality and its applications. Between 2000 and 2007 the MRL has been the lead partner in EPSRC’s Equator IRC, a £10 million, eight-partner initiative exploring the interweaving of physical and digital interaction for everyday life.
More recently, the MRL has spearheaded the establishment of the Horizon Digital Economy Institute, together with the Horizon Doctoral Training Centre, funded by grants totalling £19 million from Research Councils UK. It is aimed to establish these as world-leading centres of excellence for innovation and knowledge transfer in the ubiquitous digital economy.
Our research is grounded in a user-centred approach, in which we build on a deep technical expertise in interaction and distributed systems design to rapidly prototype new interactive technologies, and employ multiple evaluation techniques, ranging from ethnographic studies to simulator experiments, to understand how these are experienced by people in the real world. Our research is therefore highly interdisciplinary, striving to integrate perspectives from computer science, sociology, psychology, and art and design.