'I want to develop communication and expand work with other disciplines'

March 2, 2007

Statistician Gillian Lancaster is plotting a new role as head of a Centre for Excellence in Teaching at Lancaster

Statistics expert Gillian Lancaster has joined her namesake university as director of the new National Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning for Postgraduate Statistics.

Dr Lancaster, currently deputy director of Liverpool University's Centre for Medical Statistics and Health Evaluation, said she was delighted to become head of Lancaster's flagship centre, which is being built with a £4.85 million award from the Higher Education Funding Council for England. "I will be joining a statistics department with an excellent track record for research-led teaching and learning. The centre will welcome not only those wanting to specialise in statistics but also those from other disciplines who want to learn and apply statistical methods in their own research areas," she said.

"As well as exploring innovative teaching styles and assessment methods, I want to develop communication skills in statistics, and expand teaching initiatives into other disciplines and across institutions," Dr Lancaster said. "The ultimate aim is to promote Lancaster's position as a leading national and international training centre for postgraduate statistics."

Lancaster's research was rated highly in the last research assessment exercise. Its recent work includes studying the effects of climate change on sea levels, statistical genetics modelling of chromosome segments for inbred populations, building statistical models for the development of cognitive skills in children, and analysing the criminal careers of offenders and movement into serious offending.

The centre, due for completion in November, will employ six new lecturers.

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