Assistant Professor, Statistics
Ph.D. (Statistics), Department of Statistics, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO (2008)
M.S. (Statistics), Department of Mathematical Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT (2004)
B.A. (Mathematics and Music), Concordia College, Moorhead, MN (2001)
"Far better an approximate answer to the right question, than the exact answer to the wrong question, which can always be made precise." John Tukey
My primary research interests lie in statistics and data science education. Research projects in this area include: how students use metaphors and metonymies when learning statistical concepts related to sampling distributions and informal statistical inference, how learning and attitudes towards statistics are affected by one's peers in a lipped-format classroom, and developing and defining data science curricula at the undergraduate and graduate level. I am also involved in the MSU Storytelling Group, an NSF grant to bring computer science to rural and American Indian middle school students in Montana through storytelling. Additional research areas include time series analysis, specifically, change-point detection, and statistical applications in ecology.
- "Six Ways to Integrate GAISE into Your Introductory Statistics Course" invited presentation, Montana ActiveStatistics Conference, Carroll College, Helena, MT, June 28-29, 2018.
"Teaching a Large Introductory Statistics Course: Making It Work!" invited panel discussion, Joint Statistical Meetings, Chicago, IL, July 30 - August 4, 2016.
"Using the Guidelines to Develop a New Undergraduate Program" invited talk, Joint Statistical Meetings, Seattle, WA, August 8-13, 2015.
"Metonymy as a Lens into Student Understanding of Sampling Distributions" invited talk, San Diego State University Statistics Seminar, April 9, 2015.
Invited panel discussion on teaching statistics, International Conference on Statistics and its Interactions with Other Disciplines, Ho Chih Minh City, Vietnam, June 5-7, 2013.
Hancock, S. (2018). Infusing Data Visualization into Intro Stat Using Tableau. In M. A. Sorto, A. White, & L. Guyot (Eds.), Looking back, looking forward. Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Teaching Statistics(ICOTS10, July, 2018), Kyoto, Japan. Voorburg, The Netherlands: International Statistical Institute.
Davis, R. A., Hancock, S., and Yao, Y.-C. (2016). On consistency of minimum description length model selection for piecewise autoregressions. Journal of Econometrics, 194(2), pp. 360-368. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jeconom.2016.05.013
"New Undergraduate Data Science Programs" article in Amstat News, 1 July 2015, interview about our new data science major at UCI.
Noll, J. and Hancock, S. (2014). Proper and paradigmatic metonymy as a lens for characterizing student conceptions of distributions and sampling. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 88(3), pp. 361-383. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10649-014-9547-1
"The test of a good teacher is not how many questions she can ask her pupils that they will answer readily, but how many questions she inspires them to ask her which she finds it hard to answer." Alice Wellington Rollins
Fall 2019 Office Hours
- Mon/Wed 2:10-3:00pm
- Fri 11:00-11:50am
- Also available by appointment.