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Plenary Session 4. Teaching, Learning and Assessment: Complementary or Conflicting Categories for School Statistics?

Keynote Speaker

Peter Holmes (UK)

Plenary Session Abstract

Over many years I have been attempting to improve statistical literacy in the population by changing the school curriculum. All such attempts have to be put in the general context of teaching, learning and assessing the subject. Ideally these should complement and reinforce each other. In practice they often conflict, in particular assessment can distort the learning process. In this talk I shall consider the nature of these conflicts and how they might be overcome in practice, giving examples from a lifetime's practical experience.


Keynote Speaker Biography

Peter Holmes graduated from the University of Manchester in 1959 with a B.Sc. and postgraduate certificate in education. For eight years he taught mathematics and statistics at a secondary school before becoming a senior lecturer at a college of education for training teachers. During this time he also became an examiner in mathematics and statistics for GCE O- and A-level and obtained an M.SC. in Probability and Statistics from the University of Sheffield. In 1975 he became Director of the Schools Council Project on Statistical Education and then became the founding Director of the Centre for Statistical Education at the University of Sheffield. He has directed many projects on the teaching of statistics, both at school and university level. He was the first editor of the journal Teaching Statistics, a post he held for 10 years, and is currently a member of the editorial board and a trustee of the Teaching Statistics Trust. He was a leading figure on the Programme Committee and the Local Organizing Committee of the first ICOTS held in Sheffield. He has spoken at many international conferences on the teaching of mathematics and statistics, and was a plenary speaker at the First Scientific Meeting of the International Association for Statistical Education in Perugia in 1996. He has been involved with several teacher training projects in both the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Recently he has worked with the National Statistical Office in Malawi to develop a Certificate in Key Statistical Skills for statistical clerks, which is validated by the Royal Statistical Society (RSS). He is currently Senior Consultant at Nottingham Trent University both to the RSS Centre for Statistical Education and to the Learning and Teaching Support Network for Mathematics, Statistics and OR.

Peter Holmes
RSS Centre for Statistical Education
Nottingham Trent University
Nottingham NG1 4BU
Phone: 0115 848 4476
Fax: 0115 848 4771

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