The group was formed to assist the development of our research and statistics function. It provides advice and challenge on research design, methodology, analysis and reporting of findings.

The group is made up of the chair, up to six external members and one Qualifications Wales Board member representative.

The group meets a minimum of twice a year, but members can provide additional advice as required. For further details please see the terms of reference.


Alison Standfast, Chair

Alison Standfast is the Executive Director Corporate Resources at Qualifications Wales. She looks after all the corporate functions, including the research and statistics team. Prior to joining Qualifications Wales, she worked for Welsh Government and British Airways.

Dr Mary Richardson, Member

Mary is Professor of Educational Assessment in the Department for Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment at IOE, UCL’s Department of Education and Society. She leads an MA in Educational Assessment, is a member of the Research Advisory Groups for AQA and advises the Pearson PTE Academic Technical Advisory Group on AI technology and testing. Her first solo authored book, Rebuilding Public Confidence in Educational Assessment, was published in 2022.

Dr Cathryn Knight, Member

Cathryn is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology of Education based at the University of Bristol. She has extensive expertise in qualitative and quantitative research design and analysis and is currently involved in a range of national and international funded research projects. She has advanced quantitative research experience, developed through being awarded the Advanced Quantitative Methods Stipend from the ESRC.

Isabel Nisbet, Member

Isabel’s career has involved working in public service and regulation, particularly education and educational assessment. She has held a range of civil service roles and in 2008 became Ofqual's first Chief Executive. Isabel is an Affiliated Lecturer at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge. She serves on the Board of the University of Bedfordshire and on two committees advising Government on ethical questions. In 2021 she was appointed to a panel carrying out an Independent Review of Education in Northern Ireland.  

Anne Pinot de Moira, Member

Anne is a Chartered Statistician with more than 25 years of experience, primarily in the fields of education and assessment. She worked for AQA in the Centre for Educational Research and Practice where she was Head of Assessment Research. Anne is an Honorary Fellow at the Department of Education, University of Oxford. Her most recent research focused on assessment quality, marking reliability and mark scheme design.

Andrew Boyle, Member

Andrew is Director of Research at the AlphaPlus Consultancy Ltd. Andrew’s main work is to provide leadership and management for AlphaPlus’s research activities. He is a Fellow of the European assessment association, AEA-Europe, and was a member of the Vocational Advisory Group for Ofqual, the regulator of examinations and qualifications in England.

Graham Hudson, Qualifications Wales board representative

Graham is a distinguished UK-based assessment consultant who has worked extensively for national examination boards and government agencies on managing and modernising examination systems. He has delivered significant national marking programmes and undertaken nationally funded research into the use of technology in assessment. He specialises in enabling the transition from paper-based assessment to digital delivery.