Governance and Structure

Board of Trustees | Senior Management Team | Departments | Research Staff

Senior Management Team

Maria Charles

Director of Research and Product Operations
m.charles@nfer.ac.uk, +44 (0)1753 637341

Maria’s role as Director of Research and Product Operations is to lead NFER’s work with schools as partners in our research, managing sampling, survey and test administration, data capture, data production for all of NFER’s survey, data collection and test development trials. Her department manages the delivery of many of NFER’s products and services for schools including the analysis and marking service, NFER tests and the new PISA based tests for schools. Maria also set up and manages the NFER’s teacher voice omnibus survey and associated panel survey research. Maria is responsible for managing NFER’s Register of Schools and the systems that support the administrative functions of operational projects. Maria’s department is one of the Standards and Testing Agency’s Trialling Agencies and her Department also provides extensive support to Welsh Government in administering their live testing programme. As a member of the NFER’s Senior Management team, Maria is responsible for Data Protection compliance for the Foundation.

Prior experience and professional background

Maria has extensive experience in education developed both at NFER and before joining NFER. Prior to joining NFER, Maria worked for QCA’s former mathematics test development team as team manager, working with the team to develop and trial tests for use at the end of key stage 2. Before that, Maria was a primary school teacher for seven years. In her last school post, Maria was a member of the senior leadership team with responsibility for curriculum.

Maria has a degree is mathematics and statistics, a PGCE in middle years of schooling and a certificate in applied research methods. She is also a qualified Prince2® practitioner and she holds a Data Protection Practitioner Certificate PC.dp.