Dr Allison Gardner

Title: Lecturer
Phone: 01782 733989
Email: a.gardner@keele.ac.uk
Location: 1.6 (Invent) Science Learning Centre
Role: Head of Foundation Year Science
Contacting me: By phone or email
Allison Gardner profile picture

My first degree was in Clinical Biochemistry and Kent University, after which I gained a PGCE in Science and Biology. I taught in UK state schools and international colleges in Spain, mainly focussing on Biology, PSHE/SRE Education, IT and Science, with specialist skills in teaching Gifted and Talented Students and Information Technology in Education.

I completed my Masters Degree in Medical Science with the Open University, focusing on the Neurobiology of Ageing, specifically Alzheimer’s Disease. My dissertation utilised Bioinformatic tools to investigate the changes caused by pseudo-phosphorylation of tau protein on protein-binding motifs and secondary structure. I then completed a PGCert in Computational Biology at Manchester University after which I commenced my PhD, characterising and predicting amyloid mutations, at Manchester University with Prof Andrew Doig as supervisor. My research involved building a database of human amyloid mutations and associated characteristics in terms of location and amino acid properties. I then utilised machine learning to develop an ensemble predictor that predicted the probability of a mutation causing amyloid formation.

I started working at Keele University as a Teaching Fellow in 2013 and was initially Programme Director for the Accelerated International Foundation Year and Internationalisation Director. I am currently Head of Foundation Year Science. I also teach Bioinformatics and supervise third year projects in the School of Computing.

Externally I am a governor of a local primary school and a local government councillor. I sit on the Economic Development and Enterprise Scrutiny Committee (which I have previously chaired) and the Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee. I have contributed to the councils 2017-2022 Economic Strategy focussing on the impact of artificial intelligence and automation for skills and job development.

My research interests continue to focus on the prediction of disease, Alzheimer’s disease, health informatics and in the utilisation of AI tools to aid the elderly.

I am also interested in ethics of AI particularly the role within society of algorithms in decision making, data quality, feature selection and utilisation (or lack of) feedback of decisions.

I am also interested in teaching machine learning and issues related to AI at level 3 and below and encouraging girls to study and work in computing and AI. I am registered with Women in AI and work on AI-related policy and conferences with the Fabian Society.

Teaching involvement in current modules:

Foundation Year Modules

FYO-00034 Communication Skills for Scientists (module lead)

FYO-00125 People and Pathogens (module lead)

FYO-00139 Populations and the Environment (module lead)

FYO-00108 Academic Development

School of Computing and Mathematics Modules

CSC-30022 Bioinformatics

CSC-30014 Third Year Double Project

CSC-30013 Third Year Project