Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Immersive Storytelling

Virtual and augmented reality (VR, AR) are underexplored as storytelling media, despite recent technology advances yielding accessible devices such as the Oculus Rift. Museums regularly experiment with interactive digital technologies (such as AR and VR) as storytelling tools to enhance their exhibits. Tools to present stories in AR/VR typically require technological expertise. Yet, such projects also necessitate an understanding of storytelling and the limitations and opportunities presented by new media.

The Immersive Storytelling Research Group represents an interdisciplinary research collaboration between the School of Journalism and Communication and the School of Information Technology at Carleton University. This research group is led by Co-PIs Dr. Victoria McArthur (School of Journalism and Communication) and Dr. Robert Teather (School of Information Technology). The research team is collaborating on an interdisciplinary project in democratizing AR/VR storytelling. The primary focus of this project is to investigate emerging digital poetics, conventions, and foundational practices in AR/VR and spatial narrative in museum contexts. This research is further necessitated by the recent global pandemic, which has forced museums to consider other ways to provide patron access to virtual artifacts and interactive media.

Democratizing AR/VR storytelling requires an interdisciplinary approach to move beyond existing hegemonic paradigms of AR and VR development tools. The fellow will be appointed to the School of Journalism and Communication in the Faculty of Public Affairs. The successful candidate will work closely with members of the research group on the development of heuristics, frameworks, and technologies to support immersive storytelling in AR/VR. The fellow is expected to conduct their own original research, engage in existing research projects in the lab, and produce quality peer-reviewed publications. The fellow is also expected to teach one single-term (0.5 credit) course per year. There will also be opportunities for the fellow to provide mentorship to graduate students affiliated with the lab.


  1. A PhD (or equivalent) completed, prior to the start of the fellowship and in the past five years in Communication Studies, Digital Media, Information Technology, Human-Computer Interaction, or any other field relevant to the fellowship
  2. A research and publication track-record relevant to the research focus on the fellowship, as appropriate for an early stage of career. Knowledge of how to design and analyze user studies would be considered an asset.
  3. The ability to teach effectively and work with graduate students
  4. Familiarity with modern game/VR development tools such as Unity 3D, programming, related math, or similar topics would be considered an asset.

Award duration

24 months

Start date

Negotiable, but preferably by September 15, 2020

Salary for 2020/2021

C$45,000 plus benefits (see Article 27 of PSAC local 77000 collective agreement with Carleton University). Increases will follow the collective agreement.

Relocation expenses

Eligible moving expenses of up to C$1500

Research Funding

The Fellow will have access to a research fund of C$5,000 in each of the two 12-month periods in which the Fellowship is held.

Teaching requirements

The Fellow will teach one single-term (0.5 credit) course per academic year in the School of Journalism and Communication in the new Bachelor of Media Production and Design program, specifics to be negotiated.

Application Deadline

May 30, 2020.

The application should include:

1) a cover letter, with a focus on the candidate’s interest in the fellowship and a statement of their research intent in simulation-based research during this fellowship,

2) CV;

3) evidence of teaching experience and excellence, and

4) names and contact information for three referees.


Please submit applications electronically to Dr. Vicky McArthur, School of Journalism and Communication,

About Carleton University

Carleton University’s location in the nation’s capital – an urban area of about one million – provides many opportunities for research with public and private sector institutions that reflect the diversity of the country. Minutes from downtown, Carleton University is located on a beautiful campus, bordered by the Rideau River and the UNESCO World Heritage Rideau Canal.

With over 12 national museums and the spectacular Gatineau Park close by, there are many excellent recreational opportunities for individuals and families to enjoy. Carleton University is a dynamic and innovative research and teaching institution committed to developing solutions to real world problems by pushing the boundaries of knowledge and understanding. Its internationally recognized faculty, staff, researchers, and librarians provide about 30,000 full- and part-time students from every province and more than 100 countries with academic opportunities in 65+ programs of study. Carleton’s creative, interdisciplinary, and international approach to research has led to many significant discoveries and creative work in public policy, governance, science and technology, business, and the arts. 

Commitment to Diversity

Carleton University is strongly committed to fostering diversity within its community as a source of excellence, cultural enrichment, and social strength. We welcome those who would contribute to the further diversification of our University including, but not limited to, women, visible minorities, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity. Those applicants that are selected for an interview will be requested to contact the Chair of the Search Committee as soon as possible to discuss any accommodation requirements. Arrangements will be made to accommodate requests in a timely manner.