Royal Statistical Society Lectureship for Lancaster Health Data Scientist

Dr Nicola Rennie
Dr Nicola Rennie

Dr Nicola Rennie from Lancaster Medical School has been chosen as a William Guy Lecturer by The Royal Statistical Society for 2024-25.

The prestigious William Guy Lectureship selects three statisticians each year to record and deliver talks about statistics for primary, secondary and sixth form schools and colleges around a specific theme.

This year, the theme ‘statistics in plain sight’ will encourage young people to recognise the relevance of statistics and data to their everyday lives.

Dr Rennie is a Lecturer in Health Data Science in the Faculty of Health and Medicine where she carries out research using healthcare data, including applying statistical and machine learning models to routinely collected data.

“I’ll be working with secondary school students and focusing on the role of statistics and data in medicine and healthcare.

“I’m particularly keen to show young people the broad variety of careers that statistics can lead them to. I'm passionate about engaging in outreach programmes because I believe it’s important to show young people how what they learn in school relates to the real world – especially students with negative preconceptions about how useful mathematics can be. The William Guy lectureship allows me to build on some of the work I’ve done with local schools, so I’m very grateful to the Royal Statistical Society for this opportunity.”

Her talk “From lab to patient: how statistics shapes decisions in medical treatment” will highlight the role of statistics in helping healthcare professionals make decisions about treatments. By learning about statistics in medicine, school students will see how useful statistics is in real life and how it impacts our health and well-being every day.

“I’ll discuss how researchers use statistical analysis to inform decisions about how many people are required to test a treatment in a clinical trial, to decide who those people should be, and to decide which people are allocated to which treatment. The talk will show how statistics helps us to make informed choices and understand the world around us better.”

The William Guy lecturers will be contactable for online or local in-person presentations from August 1 and their talks will be available on YouTube at the start of the academic year.

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