PR~statistics prides itself on the quality of its instructors. Experts in their field, many are involved in the development of new methods; author and contribute to ‘packages’ and have published scientific material in their field. Most importantly they are skilled and experienced in teaching and portraying the application of statistical theory and methods in a clear and easy to understand manner.

You can read about all of our course instructors below, listed alphabetically, click on the green toggle to find out where they work, which courses  they teach and about their research interests.

Dr. Oliver Hooker

Director of course development

Works at: – PR statistics (Director)

Oliver obtained his PhD in ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Glasgow (July 2012 – June 2016). His PhD research was in the area of ecologically driven evolution and speciation in postglacial fish, and how these processes complicate the application and planning of successful conservation strategies, especially in species that exhibit high levels of phenotypic structuring. Oliver thesis was very broad with chapters published on various topics ranging from morphology and physiology to legislation. Some of his work includes studying anthropogenic influences on phenotypic structuring within populations of Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) as well as investigating the physiological mechanisms that may drive and/or maintain ecologically driven speciation. In particular Oliver is interested in furthering the understanding of how genetic isolation arises in sympatric polymorphic populations of Arctic charr and brown trout, (Salmo trutta).

Prior to his PhD Oliver attended the University of Hull from September 2009 – June 2012 where he achieved a first class degree (83% average) with honours in Marine and Freshwater Biology. He was awarded the departmental prize (for outstanding work) in both his second and third year. Oliver set up PR~statistics in April 2014 with the aim of providing specific training courses and workshops for people at varying stages of their academic career, delivered by experts in these fields.


7) Recknagel, H., Hooker, O. E., Adams, C. E. & Elmer, K. R. (2017) Ecosystem size predicts eco-morphological variability in a postglacial diversification. Ecology and Evolution.

Ecosystem size predicts eco- morphological variability in a postglacial diversification.

6) Hooker, O. E., Van Leeuwen, T.E.  & Adams, C. E. (2015) Physiological costs of prey switching reinforce foraging specialisation. Journalof Animal Ecology. In press.

Physiological costs of prey switching reinforce foraging specialisation

5) Adams, C. E., Bean, C. W., Dodd, J. A., Down, A.,  Etheridge, E. C., Gowans, A R. D., Hooker, O. E.,  Knudsen, R.,  Lyle, A. A., Winfield, I. J. & Præbel, K. (2016) Inter and intra-population phenotypic and genotypic structuring in the European whitefish, Coregonus lavaretus, a rare freshwater fish in Scotland. Journal of Fish Biology, 88(2), 580-594. [DOI 10.1111/jfb.12855]

Inter and intra-population phenotypic and genotypic structuring in the European whitefish Coregonus lavaretus, a rare freshwater fish in Scotland

4) Hooker, O. E., Barry, J., Van Leeuwen, T., Lyle, A., Newton, J., Cunningham, P. & Adams, C. E. (2016) Morphological, ecological and behavioural differentiation of sympatric profundal and pelagic Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in Loch Dughaill Scotland. Hydrobiologia, 783(1), 209-221. [DOI 10.1007/s10750-015-2599-0]

Morphological, ecological and behavioural differentiation of sympatric profundal and pelagic Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in Loch Dughaill Scotland

3) Van Leeuwen, T., Hooker, O. E., Metcalfe, N. & Adams, C. E. (2015) Differences in diet-induced flexibility in morphology and growth in a partially migratory species. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. [DOI 10.1139/cjfas-2015-0300]

Differences in diet-induced flexibility in morphology and growth in a partially migratory species

2) Hooker, O.E., Maitland, P. S., Bean, C. W. & Adams, C. E. (2015) Effectiveness of Local Biodiversity Action Plans to Identify Locally Rare and Endangered Fish in Scotland. Scottish Geographical Journal 1-11. [DOI 10.1080/14702541.2015.1077267]

Effectiveness of Local Biodiversity Action Plans to Identify Locally Rare and Endangered Fish in Scotland

1) Barry, J., Newton, M., Dodd, J. A., Hooker, O. E., Boylan, P., Lucas, M. C. & Adams, C. E. (2015) Foraging specialisms influence space use and movement patterns of the European eel Anguilla Anguilla. Hydrobiologia 1-16. [DOI 10.1007/s10750-015-2466-z]

Foraging specialisms influence space use and movement patterns of the European eel Anguilla Anguilla

Dr. Nic Blouin

Full Bio:

Works at – Senior research scientist at the University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming
Teaches – Bioinformatics for Geneticists and Biologists (BIGB)

Nic co-leads in computational training for Wyoming researchers requiring computational support to complete investigations through Big Data analysis through the National Institutes of Health’s Institutional Development Award (IDeA) Networks of biomedical Research Excellence(INBRE) program. He is also the lead scientist on marine and oomycete ecological and evoluto9nary investigations.

Nic has been using computational tools to answer evolutionary and ecological questions associated with evolutionary/marine biology for the past 10 years. He has been involved in several Joint Genome Institute sequencing projects and is the research lead for an additional four whole genome/transcriptome sequencing and annotation projects of marine algae and oomycetes.

He has a commitment to training of organismal biologists in the use of computational tools to improve data handling and analysis. As part of his interests in improving computational literacy for end users, he has recently joined the organizing committee for the Marine Ecological and Marine Genomics (MEEG) summer course held in Roscoff, France each year.

Dr. Martin Jones

Full Bio:

Works at – Python for biologists
Teaches – Introduction to Python for Biologists (IPYB) and Advanced Python for biologists (APYB)

Martin started his programming career by learning Perl during the course of his PhD in evolutionary biology, and started teaching other people to program soon after. Since then he has taught introductory programming to hundreds of biologists, from undergraduates to PIs, and has maintained a philosophy that programming courses must be friendly, approachable, and practical.

In his academic career, Martin mixed research and teaching at the University of Edinburgh, culminating in a two year stint as Lecturer in Bioinformatics. He now runs programming courses for biological researchers as a full time freelancer.

Dr. Ian Misner

Full Bio:

Works at – Bioinformatics coordinator at the University of Maryland
Teaches – Bioinformatics for Geneticists and Biologists (BIGB)

Ian has been working with bioinformatics and genomics for the past 6 years as a biologist. He worked for 3 years completing the genome sequences of two oomycetes while completing his PhD with Dr. Chris Lane at the University of Rhode Island.

He has lead the de novo sequencing, assembly, annotation, and analyses on over 15 genomes. He has also been a lead researcher with a variety of RNAseq projects from model organisms to de novo research projects. He is currently the Bioinformatics Manager of the UMD Bioinformatics Core where he conducts tailored bioinformatics workshops for researchers in and around the University of Maryland.

Dr. Aline Quadros

Full Bio:

Works at – Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research in Germany
Teaches – Coding, data management, and Shiny applications using RStudio for evolutionary biologists and ecologists (CDSR)

Aline is an ecologist and researcher at the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research in Germany. Besides research, she is interested in helping biologists to learn how to combine programming skills with statistical techniques to get the most of their data. Before graduating she worked as a freelancer programmer for many years, building applications with Visual Studio and web applications with ASP and SQL. She has been teaching graduate statistics courses with R since 2011.

Dr. Owen Wangensteen

Full Bio:

Works at – School of Environment and Life Sciences, University of Salford (UK)
Teaches – Eukaryotic Metabarcoding (EUKB)

Owen has a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Granada, Spain (1999) and a PhD in Biology from the University of Barcelona, Spain (2013). The focus of his research is developing new molecular methods for answering ecological questions. Hi favourite systems are marine communities (both benthic and pelagic), but he has recently started to work on terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems as well. Owen’s taxonomic area of expertise is marine invertebrates.

From being a marine molecular ecologist he eventually realised that I had become a bioinformatician, with expertise in analysing high-throughput sequencing data, with a focus on ecological questions. He is particularly interested in eukaryotic metabarcoding for obtaining biodiversity data from different communities and ecosystems. I am currently developing new pipelines, reference databases and analysis methods for molecular biomonitoring and eukaryotic biodiversity assessment

Owen has recently been working in the University of Barcelona (Dpt. Of Animal Biology), in the Spanish Research Council (CEAB-CSIC) and in the University of Salford (School of Environment & Life Sciences). Research projects in which Owen has recently been involved include: SeaDNA, Metabarpark, ChallenGen, Benthomics.

Recent publications:

  • Wangensteen OS, Cebrian E, Palacín C, Turon X (2017) Under the canopy: community-wide effects of invasive algae in marine protected areas revealed by metabarcoding. Submitted.
  • Wangensteen OS, Guardiola M, Palacín C, Turon X (2017) Metabarcoding shallow marine hard-bottom communities: unexpected diversity and database gaps revealed by two molecular markers. Submitted.
  • Bakker J, Wangensteen OS, Chapman DD, Boussarie G, Buddo D, Guttridge TL, Hertler H, Mouillot D, Vigliola L, Mariani S (2017) Environmental DNA reveals tropical shark diversity and abundance in contrasting levels of anthropogenic impact. Submittted.
  • Macías-Hernández N, Athey K, Tonzo V, Wangensteen OS, Arnedo MA, Harwood J (2017) Exploring spider digestive processes in the context of body part DNA extraction and molecular gut content analysis. Submitted.
  • Casso, M, Palacín C, López C, Wangensteen OS (2017) Molecular and morphological evidence of nonvalidity of genus Arbaciella (Echinoidea:Arbacioida) throughout the Mediterranean and NE Atlantic. Submitted.
  • Guardiola M, Wangensteen OS, Taberlet P, Coissac E, Uriz MJ, Turon X (2016) Spatio-temporal monitoring of deep-sea communities using metabarcoding of sediment DNA and RNA. PeerJ 4:e2807,  doi:10.7717/peerj.2807
  • Wangensteen OS, Turon X (2016) Metabarcoding techniques for assessing biodiversity of marine animal forests. In: Rossi S, Bramanti L, Gori A, Orejas C (eds.) Marine Animal Forests: The Ecology of Benthic Biodiversity Hotspots. Springer. ISBN: 978-3-319-17001-5.
  • Wangensteen OS, Turon X, Palacin C (2016) Reproductive strategies in marine invertebrates and the structuring of marine animal forests. In: Rossi S, Bramanti L, Gori A, Orejas C (eds.) Marine Animal Forests: The Ecology of Benthic Biodiversity Hotspots. ISBN: 978-3-319-17001-5.
  • García-Cisneros A, Pérez-Portela R, Wangensteen OS, Campos-Canet M, Palacín C (2016) Hope springs eternal in the starfish gonad: preserved potential for sexual reproduction in a single-clone population of a fissiparous starfish. Hydrobiologia. doi:10.1007/s10750-016-2971-8
  • Rodríguez-Barreras R, Wangensteen OS (2016)  Assessing the reliability of two tagging techniques in the echinoid Echinometra lucunter. Regional Studies in Marine Science 5:51–54.
  • Balsalobre M, Wangensteen OS, Palacín C, Clemente S, Hernández JC. (2016) Efficiency of artificial collectors for quantitative assessment of settlement rates of marine invertebrates. Scientia Marina 80:2007–216.
  • Guardiola M, Uriz MJ, Taberlet P, Coissac E, Wangensteen OS, Turon X. (2015) Deep-sea, deep-sequencing: metabarcoding of marine sediment communities. PloS ONE 10: e0139633.
  • Hazan Y, Wangensteen OS, Fine M. (2014) Tough as a rock-boring urchin: adult Echinometra sp. EE from the Red Sea show high resistance to ocean acidification over long term exposures. Mar Biol 161: 2531–2545.
  • Wangensteen OS, Dupont S, Casties I, Turon X, Palacín C. (2013) Some like it hot: temperature and pH modulate larval development and settlement of the sea urchin Arbacia lixula. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 449: 304-311
  • Wangensteen OS, Turon X, Casso M, Palacín C. (2013) The reproductive cycle of the sea urchin Arbacia lixula in Northwest Mediterranean: potential influence of temperature and photoperiod. Mar Biol 160: 3157-3168
  • Wangensteen OS (2013) Biology and phylogeography of the black sea urchin Arbacia lixula (Echinoidea: Arbacioida). Doctoral thesis. University of Barcelona.
  • Wangensteen OS, Turon X, Pérez-Portela R, Palacín C. (2012) Natural or naturalized? Phylogeography suggests that the abundant sea urchin Arbacia lixula is a recent colonizer of the Mediterranean. PLoS one 7: e45067.
  • Wangensteen OS, Turon X, García-Cisneros A, Recasens M, Romero J, Palacín C. (2011) A wolf in sheep’s clothing: carnivory in dominant sea urchins in the Mediterranean. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 441: 117-128

Prof. Rodney Dyer

Full Bio:

Works at – Assistant Director for the Centre for Environmental Studies, Virginia Commonwealth University
Teaches – Landscape (population) genetic data analysis using R (LNDG)

Matt qualified as a veterinary surgeon from the University of Glasgow, and subsequently focussed his post-graduate training in the area of quantitative veterinary epidemiology, obtaining his PhD in 2010. His research focus spans from statistical methodology through to the application of statistical and mathematical modelling to problems in epidemiology and ecology, working on a wide variety of problems in various different fields.

Much of his work was revolved around the use of Bayesian methods, particularly Markov chain Monte Carlo, applied to parasitology and antimicrobial resistance. He is the author of two R packages hosted on CRAN, including the ‘runjags’ package which serves as an interface to ‘Just Another Gibbs Sampler (JAGS)’, and is also a developer and currently builds and maintains the Mac binaries on the JAGS project.

Matt is also a fellow of the higher education academy with a wide range of teaching experience in epidemiology, biostatistics, public health and clinical farm animal medicine at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, he enjoys the challenge of describing complex statistical methods in a way that is accessible to ecologists and epidemiologists with a background in clinical or biological sciences.

Dr. Thibaut Jombart

Full Bio:

Works at – Lecturer at Imperial College London
Teaches – Genetic data analysis and exploration using R (GDAR)

Thibaut is a Lecturer in genetic analysis at the MRC Centre for Outbreak Analysis and Modelling, Imperial College London. His early career focussed on developing multivariate methods for analysing genetic data, including spatial genetic patterns, group structure, and the phylogenetic comparative method. His current work aims to exploit pathogen genome sequences to understand the spatial-temporal dynamics of infectious diseases such as influenza, plague, or the ongoing West African Ebola outbreak. He is involved in the development of a number of R packages including adegenet, adephylo, geoGraph, outbreaker, OutbreakTools, bmmix, episerve (author) and ade4, and phylobase (contributor).

Dr. Zhian Kamvar

Full Bio:

Works at – University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Teaches  Genetic data analysis and exploration using R (GDAR)

Zhian Kamvar is a Postdoctoral Research Scholar at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln investigating the evolution of fungicide resistance in a plant pathogenic fungus. His doctoral work centres around developing tools for analysis of clonal populations in the R package ‘poppr’. He has contributed to other popgen packages such as adegenet, mmod, and vcfR.