Statistics is often assumed to be a series of techniques. While it may be possible to teach postgraduate students generic techniques to enable them to carry out quantitative research, it is questionable how meaningfully this can be taught when separated from thinking about research data.
Teaching students as close as possible to their own postgraduate degree scheme is one way forward, but this strategy presents teachers of statistics with new problems. Both students and departments have not necessarily understood statistics as a way of thinking - or understood it as a discipline with multiple and
sometimes discordant approaches.
The Lancaster CETL has allowed an opportunity to focus on teaching postgraduate statistics, yet in providing a focus for statistics attracts audiences from diverse interest groups. It presents us with the challenge to find a balance between what is possible generically and what needs to be specific.