Project report: The teaching of statistics in UK universities

Smith, T. M. F., Staetsky, L.

This project has two phases. In phase 1 various data sources are explored and the Directory of Academic Statisticians (DAS) is identified as the most reliable source of data on Statistics teaching staff. The number of staff in core Mathematical Science groups peaks in 1996 and has declined since then. The decline is related to RAE score. In Phase 2 a survey of university groups that identify with the discipline of Statistics is used to explore the past and present provision of Statistics teaching. The key groups for determining the future supply of Statisticians are those from within the Mathematical Sciences. These groups can be categorized as strong, marginal or weak, depending on their recent history and perceived prospects. This categorization is used to make projections of Staff numbers in 2010. A decline of between 7% and 22% is expected. The position in Medical Statistics is stable. Conclusions are drawn in the final section based on the survey returns and the analysis of the DAS data.