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Critical Thinking in Science

About the Author

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Daniell DiFrancesca is a science teacher at Wakefield Middle School in the Wake County Public School System. She has a Master of Arts in Teaching degree and a B.S. in Biology from the University of Pittsburgh. She taught science in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Fairfax, Virginia before coming to Wakefield in 2007. Daniell teaches 8th grade science and is the Science Department Chair.

Wakefield Middle School
2300 Wakefield Pines Drive
Raleigh, NC 27614

Alan F. Karr is Director of the National Institute of Statistical Sciences (NISS), a position he has held since 2000. He is also Professor of Statistics & Operations Research and Biostatistics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (since 1993).

His research activities are cross-disciplinary collaborations involving statistics and such other fields as data confidentiality, data integration, data quality, software engineering, information technology, education statistics, transportation, materials science and survey modeling. He holds one patent and is the author of three books and more than 110 scientific papers, the majority of which have co-authors from other disciplines. Karr is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, an elected member of the International Statistical Institute, and served as a member of the Army Science Board from 1990 to 1996.


Dr. Nell Sedransk is the Associate Director of the National Institute of 
Statistical Sciences (NISS) and of the Statistical and Applied 
Mathematical Sciences Institute; she also holds a Professorship in 
Statistics at North Carolina State University. She is an Elected Fellow 
of the International Statistical Institute, also Elected Fellow of the 
American Statistical Association. She has served as Associate Editor 
for the Journal of the American Statistical Association, the Journal of 
Statistical Planning and Inference, and has been Vice-Chair of the 
Publication Board of the American Statistical Association. She is 
coauthor of 3 technical books; and her research in both statistical 
theory and application appears in more than 60 scientific papers in 
refereed journals. The areas of her technical expertise include design 
of complex experiments, Bayesian inference, spatial statistics and 
topological foundations for statistical theory. She has applied her 
expertise in statistical design and analysis of complex experiments and 
observational studies to a wide range of applications from physiology 
and medicine to engineering and sensors to social science applications 
in cognitive psychology and psychometrics to ethical designs for 
clinical trials.