This paper is from Session 5B: Evidence-based management
which comes under Topic 5: Statistics education in the disciplines and the workplace
(Wednesday 16th, 10:55-12:25)
Bringing the workplace into a National Certificate in Official Statistics
- Sharleen Forbes (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)
- Alan Keegan (Statistics New Zealand, New Zealand)
New Zealand’s National Certificate of Official Statistics was designed to raise the capability of public sector employees, in particular policy analysts giving advice to senior managers or Ministers. The competency based 40-credit certificate was first introduced in 2007. Four taught units (worth 24 credit) give students skills in basic official statistics and in critically evaluating statistical, research, policy or media publications for their quality (of data, survey design, analysis and conclusions) and appropriateness for some policy question (e.g. how to reduce problem gambling). Case studies are used to set the statistics learning into the real world context of the students. An evaluation of the first cohort of students led to a compulsory “umbrella” workplace-based statistics project worth 16 credits being introduced. Some of the challenges for students and their managers in achieving a project that is both useful to the organisation and meets the requirements of the Certificate are discussed.