Faculty Spotlight - Dr. Iain Pardoe

Dr. Ian Pardoe and his dog
Dr. Iain Pardoe  Contact

Dr. Iain Pardoe

Online Courses
Areas of Interest

Applied statistics, statistics education, online learning

Introduction

Originally from the United Kingdom, I currently live in Nelson, British Columbia, Canada, where I teach and write online statistics and mathematics courses. I teach at Penn State, Thompson Rivers University, and Statistics.com. I was formerly an Associate Professor of Decision Sciences at the University of Oregon and I obtained my PhD in Statistics at the University of Minnesota where my advisor was Dennis Cook. In my free time, I like to ski, play soccer, do CrossFit, watch movies, and spend time with my family.

How did you get started with teaching online for Penn State?

Through a number of connections between the University of Minnesota and Penn State, I was approached by Jim Rosenberger to teach the graduate data mining course online. Jim interviewed me via Skype in the fall of 2012 while I was spending six months in South and Central America with my family! I’ve since taken on the graduate regression course and enjoy collaborating with my fellow STAT 501 instructors.

What do you like best about teaching online?

The flexibility it affords me and my students. I love being able to fit teaching online around the other things in my life and to engage with students whether I’m at home or anywhere else in the world. I also really enjoy developing online courses and working with new technology and online learning tools.

How do you engage online students with statistics?

With compelling applications, interesting learning activities, and challenging assessments. I strive to respond to student questions and forum posts quickly and to encourage students to think critically about the course topics.

What is your best advice to students in order to be successful in an online statistics course?

Take advantage of the resources available to you in the course. Do all the reading, watch all the videos, try all the practice exercises and quizzes, review all the suggested links, and engage with your fellow students and instructor in the discussion forums. Also, start work on assignments and reviewing for exams as early as you can – don’t leave things to the last minute. And try not to sweat the grade too much but take the time to enjoy the ride.