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Liverpool Group Meeting: Heads of Mathematics

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Date(s) - 13/03/2017
9:30 am - 4:15 pm

Stonyhurst College

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We are very fortunate to have the following visiting speakers.

Neil Sheldon worked for over 40 years at Manchester Grammar School, teaching mathematics, statistics, philosophy and computer science. His time included stints as Head of Mathematics and as Second Master. He has been heavily involved in examining since the 1970s, including A levels and Cambridge STEP.

Neil is currently the Royal Statistical Society’s Vice President for Education and Statistical Literacy. He is also Chair of the Teaching Statistics Trust.

More information may be found at

Neil’s talk is entitled:The three Rs of statistics: Randomisation, Replication and Re-sampling.

Traditionally, A level statistics has consisted of standard formulae applied to small, artificial, fixed data sets. In the new specifications, however, students have to be able to handle large, real data sets using technology. In this talk Neil Sheldon will show how the use of technology, specifically the use of a good statistical spreadsheet, can enhance statistical practice. Technology enables students to explore data in a dynamic fashion, thereby experiencing what statistics is really all about: variation.

The talk will also demonstrate how technology can be used to enhance the understanding of statistical theory. For many students the proofs underpinning concepts such as the use of divisor n – 1 in the sample variance, or the Central Limit Theorem are just too difficult. Concepts such as these can be convincingly demonstrated, however, using simulations.

Will Hornby is a Mathematics Subject Specialists at OCR. He is the Subject Development Lead for A Level Mathematics and Further Mathematics. Before joining OCR he worked as a private tutor with students from key stage 3 to undergraduate, as a Senior Assessor for OCR and Cambridge International Examinations, as an Associate Lecturer for the Open University and as a professional choral singer.

Will is going to deliver three sessions. The first will be on the new A-level reforms, with an opportunity to view the OCR offering. The second will be a hands on teaching and learning based workshop on teaching mechanics for the first time and the third will focus on the OCR Discrete and Additional Pure options in Further Maths. At the end of each session there will be an opportunity to ask Will any questions.


9.30 a.m. Coffee & OCR exhibition

10.00 a.m. Welcome and Introduction College staff

10.15 a.m. A-level reform: an overview Will Hornby

11.00 a.m. Break

11.20 a.m. The three Rs of Statistics: Randomisation,

Replication and Re-sampling. Neil Sheldon

12.20 p.m. Lunch

1.30 p.m. Workshops Will Hornby / Stella Dudzic*

2.30 p.m. Workshops Will Hornby / Stella Dudzic*

3.30 p.m. Antiquities Jan Graffius

4.15 p.m. Tea / departure

The sessions in the morning will be in the Top Refectory. Workshops will be in Loyola classroom or the Gerard Room and the session on Antiquities will be in the historic libraries.

The Bayley Room has been booked for the day and delegates will be able to leave coats, bags etc there quite safely.