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July 27, 2015

Japan | Publishing | Events | Awards & Competitions

Cengage Celebrates Launch of Our World Series With Free Gift Campaign

Cengage Learning has announced the full publication of its long-awaited series for young learners, Our World, in partnership with the National Geographic Society.

Our World is an award-winning series packed with fascinating content to capture children’s attention, featuring stunning National Geographic photographs and videos. The series incorporates core 21st Century skills – communication, collaboration, creativity and critical thinking – and is an engaging and relevant way for children to learn English.

To celebrate the publication of the series, Cengage Learning are offering a special gift to all teachers who apply via the following URL by August 15th and complete a short survey: http://www.instant.ly/s/7vCRe

The launch of Our World comes at a time when English education in Japan is undergoing major changes, with English being set as a compulsory elementary school subject from the third grade. Cengage Learning believe English education will become even more important for our children’s future and hope that young learners in Japan the 21st Century will be able to communicate confidently and naturally with their international peers in our global community.

• More about the Our World campaign
• Order Our World online

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June 11, 2015

Japan | Publishing

Cambridge University Press Japan appoints JPT as sole logistics provider

Cambridge University Press in Japan has appointed Japan Publications Trading Co. Ltd (JPT), as its new sole logistics provider for their print ELT products in Japan.

JPT, founded in 1942, is one of Japan’s largest importers and wholesalers of books and magazines in Japan. It is the largest independent distributor of language learning textbooks in Japan with a particularly strong focus on ELT.

JPT will start supplying Cambridge University Press ELT titles to all Japan based customers from July 1st, 2015. There will be no impact on the range of ELT products Cambridge University Press promotes and sells in Japan.

For more information, download the press release here.

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January 31, 2014

Publishing | Opinion

Loyalty vs. Royalties in agile ELT publishing

loyalty-vs-royalties.jpgThe long-standing royalty agreement between author and publisher is continuing to be challenged by developments in digital content creation. Over on eltjam, ELT writer and prolific blogger Nicola Prentis takes a look at the implications of this shift.

ELT’s newest buzzword is not in fact ‘digital’ or ‘agile’, it’s ‘restructuring’. Pearson, as everyone knows by now, is leading the way with a huge restructuring that has had writers floundering, projects awaiting commission (or not) for a year and editors reapplying for their own jobs. The switch to digital is not Pearson’s only move, they’re adopting more agile ways of working and will be focusing on providing education services and viewing everything through the lens off ‘efficacy’.

At the recent MaWSIG conference I was surprised to learn that, contrary to ideas that publishers are raking it in, both they and the author’s percentage of profits from a coursebook is in single figures. Evidently this is not enough for either party but only one side has the power to rectify it. A massive 47%, goes on production costs so, if the point of agile is to be more efficient and get a product out quicker, money will be saved there. Good news.

Even more good news, digital products don’t require storage, printing or transport costs so will drive savings that could benefit both publishers and authors. In traditional publishing, we’re seeing ebook contracts with much higher shares of the profits going to authors and cheaper products for customers. For example I have an ebook contract with a division of Harper Collins for 25% of the net, rising to 50% if it sells over 10,000 copies, significantly more than I would get on print books.

Read the full article on eltjam.

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January 23, 2014

Japan | Publishing | ELT People | Business

Ryoji Fukada appointed as Chairman of CUP Japan

ryoji-fukada.jpgRyoji Fukada has been announced as the new Chairman of Cambridge University Press, Japan.

Fukada-san brings to the Press a vast wealth of experience in the international publishing industry, serving most recently as Chairman of international subscription agent, Swets Information Systems, Japan.

Prior to joining Swets, Fukada-san spent six years as Managing Director of Springer Japan, and before that, was Managing Director at Elsevier Science Japan, which included Elsevier’s Electronic Journals platform, ScienceDirect.

Tony Lund, Managing Director of Cambridge University Press, Asia, said: ‘Asia is a key area for future growth for the Press so we are delighted to welcome Fukada-san to the newly-created position of Chairman to unlock the potential in Japan. The role will help to provide strategic leadership to all the Press’s business in Japan and Fukada-san’s experience is a very good match for such a task.

Commenting on his new role Fukada-san said: "It’s an extremely exciting time to join Cambridge University Press as we seek to maximise the opportunities open to us in the important Japanese market. I very much look forward to working closely with Tony and hope that my experience, coupled with the Press’s rich portfolio of product, will help realise the full potential of the market in Japan."

Cambridge University Press in Japan provides academic and English language teaching materials throughout Japan. Based in Tokyo, Cambridge representatives work directly with libraries, universities and education professionals and also promote to booksellers – in turn allowing them to supply the many customers with some of the highest quality research and teaching materials available.

Read the original press release from Cambridge University Press, Japan.

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Publishing

OUP releases major iBooks Textbooks for ELT and IB

ibooks-itextbooks.jpg
Oxford University Press announces a new series of 13 iBooks Textbooks, now available on the iBooks Store.

Oxford University Press today announces the launch of 13 new iBooks Textbooks. Headway, Oxford’s general English course for teenagers and adults that teachers trust, leads an impressive list of new iBooks Textbooks for students learning English as a foreign language or studying for the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. Created using iBooks Author, Oxford’s new iBooks Textbooks take advantage of the unique interactive capabilities of iPad and Mac to enrich the learning experience for students.

Peter Marshall, Managing Director, English Language Teaching Division, Oxford University Press said, "We work closely with educators worldwide to provide the best possible learning and teaching experience for our customers. We welcome the opportunity to work with Apple’s authoring software to enable our quality content to be used in new and exciting ways. Our design team has engaged with iBooks Author to deliver a high level of interactivity and visual appeal that our teachers and students demand. We’re proud to publish some of our best-selling titles as iBooks Textbooks as part of our mission to further education worldwide."

Kate Harris, Managing Director, Education and Children’s Division, said, "We are committed to providing educational resources in a variety of formats, and iBooks Textbooks allow us to offer IB students a powerful digital learning experience. Our IB Course Books truly capture the IB spirit, and commitment to quality international education. The global reach of the iBooks Store means they are the perfect partner to deliver IB resources internationally."

Oxford’s 13 new iBooks Textbooks, which will launch at The Bett Show, London (22-25 January) include:

Headway, the world’s best-selling English course, used by over 100 million students to learn English. The Headway iBooks Textbooks offer features that are great for in-class and home study with readily-accessible audio, interactive exercises, and easy access to the Headway iTutor.

Read the full announcement from OUP.

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January 14, 2014

Business | Opinion | Publishing

Move Fast and Break ELT Things

move-fast-break-elt-things.gifThere's an interesting discussion going on over at eltjam about the perceptions and realities of the ELT publishing industry, based on a November blog post by Jonathan Sayers of www.eltplustech.com.

Tonight, at TESOLFrance‘s annual colloquium, I had the privilege of meeting Karen White, Karen Spiler and Sue Kay, and listening to them talk about their excellent resource ELT Teacher to Writer. The idea is to train teachers in the areas of content writing that the publishers value/need and then put writers and publishers in contact with each other.

As part of the talk we had to attribute a few statements about the ELT publishing industry with the labels ‘true’ or ‘false’ (in true ELT style). I got a couple of these very much wrong, and I don’t think I should have done (more in a furthering-of-the-industry way than a not-liking-to-be-wrong kind of way). Here’s why:

The first statement I got wrong was ‘Publishing companies decide what type of materials they are going to publish years in advance.’ There were mentions of publishers’ ’5 year plans’ and the (cosy) prior knowledge of changes to certain exams informing release dates of new publications. But 5 years is the time it takes some language learning companies, such as busuu or duolingo, to be conceptualised, launched and reach millions of users. Things change so fast these days that a 5 year plan could be redundant after 1. That’s not to say a long term plan isn’t good business practice, but the idea that publishers can predict the market so far in advance is becoming ever less believable. We can learn so much in 5 years, and we can help our learners by using that knowledge now, rather that having such a long lag.

Read the full article on eltjam.

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January 11, 2014

Publishing | Opinion | Business

Can Pearson solve the rubric’s cube?

If you are interested in the future of learning, and in particular digital learning, then you'll find a wealth of information in this extensive blog post on Pearson and their new efficacy web site.

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, it’s hard to dispute that Pearson has an outsized impact on education in America. This huge company—they have a stock market valuation of $18 billion—touches all levels from kindergarten through career education, providing textbooks, homework platforms, high-stakes testing, and even helping to design entire online degree programs. So when they announce a major change in their corporate strategy, it is consequential.

That is one reason why I think that most everybody who is motivated to read this blog on a regular basis will also find it worthwhile to read Pearson’s startling publication, “The Incomplete Guide to Delivering Learning Outcomes” and, more generally, peruse their new efficacy web site. One of our goals for e-Literate is to explain what the industry is doing, why, and what it might mean for education. Finding the answers to these questions is often an exercise in reading the tea leaves, as Phil ably demonstrated in his recent posts on the Udacity/SJSU pilot and the layoffs at Desire2Learn.

But this time is different. In all my years of covering the ed tech industry, I have never seen a company be so explicit and detailed about their strategy as Pearson is being now with their efficacy publications. Yes, there is plenty of marketing speak here. But there is also quite a bit about what they are actually doing as a company internally—details about pilots and quality reviews and hiring processes and M&A criteria. These are the gears that make a company go. The changes that Pearson is making in these areas are the best clues we can possibly have as to what the company really means when they say that they want efficacy to be at the core of their business going forward. And they have published this information for all the world to see.

Read the full post on e-Literate.

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November 26, 2013

Technology | Publishing | Online

New Skins for Potato Pals: From Page to iPad

potato-pals-app.jpg ELT News regular Patrick Jackson has written a piece for eltjam on the new iPad app incarnation of his own Potato Pals series.

… the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no tellin’ who
That it’s namin’
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin’.

These days, Dylan’s words ring true in the ELT world. How we deal with change is at the forefront of everybody’s mind. There will be losers and winners but, as Nick Robinson writes, ‘if we all chose the most adventurous path, the industry could be quite an interesting place in a few years’. I’m happy to be able to announce some good news from my own neck of these woods – news that may have you rooting through your drawers.

For the past five years I have been working full time as an ELT author, pretty much exclusively with one of the major publishers (OUP). I have, like everyone in the business been watching developments with interest and wondering which way the wind will blow, whom it will blow away and what sort of jetsam it will cast up on the shore. All my work for OUP has been in the traditional way, for advances and royalties and that’s the way I would like it to remain. It keeps one invested in the project from start to finish as well as motivated to be involved on the marketing and professional development side of things, which I very much enjoy. I would urge Pearson to have a long hard think about what they are doing as they attempt to cast their authors adrift. Or maybe they did have a long hard think and this is a one hundred million dollar masterstroke that will create the new tomorrow. I hope not.

Read the full post on eltjam.

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November 14, 2013

Publishing | Business

CUP reports 11th year of growth driven by digital focus

Cambridge University Press has reported an eleventh successive year of growth for the year ended 30 April 2013.

The Press’s 2013 Annual Report shows sales of £261.7m, up by seven per cent from £245m in 2012, and a pre-tax operating surplus of £8.2m – well up on 2012, all delivered against a background of continuing economic challenge in key markets.

Digital development has been a top priority with significant upgrades to Cambridge Books Online, Cambridge Journals Online and Touchstone Blended Learning digital platforms among a range of activities and products. A wide variety of new apps and online courses were produced this year, including FUNdamentals, an Australian online learning resource for the first three years of school. The Phrasal Verbs Machine app, designed to help non-native English speakers use phrasal verbs to sound more natural in their writing and speaking, was also launched and was downloaded more than 400,000 times.

The Press has strengthened links with its partners across Cambridge. It saw strong growth in the Cambridge Exams Publishing unit, run jointly with Cambridge English Language Assessment, and through joint education reform projects in Kazakhstan and Mongolia with Cambridge International Examinations and the Cambridge Faculty of Education. Joint development of the ground-breaking Cambridge Computing Massive Open Online Courses for schools was achieved with Cambridge Assessment, the Cambridge Computer Labs and Raspberry Pi.

Nearly 90 per cent of the Press’s sales were from outside the UK, and as growth slows in some Western European and the North American markets, opportunities in Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and Asia are increasing. Sales to schools in South Africa grew hugely, linked to the new curriculum, and China, Mexico, Turkey and Saudi Arabia all saw significant sales successes.

Another focus was operational change. Increasingly, electronic book distribution and digital printing closer to market are the norm, so this year saw the final closure of the UK printing operation and the outsourcing of US distribution. Governance structures have been modernised, with a new Operating Board now in place to oversee the Press’s day-to-day operations.

The roll-out of a major programme to improve finance and fulfilment systems was begun with the aim of improving financial management, information and controls and introducing new processes. The first phase was implemented in January, on time and on budget, when new finance and procurement systems went live in the US and UK.

Community and charity activities all over the world saw more than 400 Press colleagues give over 1,700 hours of volunteering time – partnering with schools, participating in reading schemes, running library workshops, giving careers talks and raising funds.

Chief Executive Peter Phillips said: ‘The past year has seen many changes to keep the Press competitive in a fast-changing world. It has also shown that we remain unwavering in our commitment to quality while innovating and adapting to offer our customers learning, research and knowledge in the changing forms they want.’

Read the original press release on the Cambridge University Press website.

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November 05, 2013

Publishing

Iterative publishing in ELT - 10 pros and cons

ELT PublishingThe latest over on eltjam is an article that lists 10 reasons why iterative publishing - the default model for websites - both will and won't work for ELT.

One of the big buzzwords in ELT publishing at the moment is iterative publishing – the idea, borrowed from the software and startup world, that products should be in a constant state of evolution and improvement in response to changing market conditions, requirements from big customers or new technologies. The whole concept of ‘editions’ is apparently past its sell-by date in the internet age – too redolent of the dusty old print era. An iteratively published course doesn’t need editions, since it’s never more than a few months since the last update or improvement. One of the commonly cited advantages of digital (and particularly online) publishing is the ability to make updates to an already-published product in a way that just isn’t possible with print. Think corrections, general enhancements, topical content, implementing features requested by customers. All sounds great, and is what everyone is already used to with websites.

Of course, we’ve always had iterative publishing to some extent – reprint corrections are standard practice, and the gap between new editions of coursebooks has been decreasing – sometimes to as little as two or three years. So, maybe iterative publishing is really a matter of dramatically increasing the speed and impact of those updates – more actively looking for ways to make improvements as frequently as possible and putting in place structures and processes that make it feasible to do so. Doing that has a number of pretty big implications, though. Implications for schools and teachers, too, not just publisher themselves.

Read the full post on .

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October 14, 2013

Opinion | Publishing

Royalties – We are not amused

book-royalties.jpgMany English teachers venture into - or at least think about venturing into - the world of writing. But how does it work financially? Get some insight into the world of advances and royalties courtesy of Nicola Prentis.

This week I got my first Royalties statement. A landmark event. Hurrah!

Even though I’m long past the question I had at the beginning of the year about whether I’m a writer or just someone that writes, this is another pretty definitive answer to it.

However, this event also answered other questions I might think about posing to myself.

Am I ridiculously naive? Have I really got any clue what I’m doing playing with the Big Boys in the Grown Up Writing Playpen?

For starters, and the fact I’m publicly admitting this shows how much I feel kinship through blogging, is that I completely misunderstood the Advance vs Royalties system. I think in the back of my mind I knew advance meant “advance payment” but I had somehow turned it round in my head to think it meant something more like “in advance of your brilliance, here’s some money.”

Royalties, it turns out, are like paying back a debt to the publishers. They invested in me/my Graded Reader and until my royalties meet that, I will just see the minus number creep to £0 – hopefully. So after the first half of this year, I am now £160 closer to making more money. After that, if there are sales after that, I will make new money for old work. At those sales figures, it will take about 4.5 years.

Read the full post on the Simple English blog.

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October 03, 2013

Publishing | Opinion

Co-opetition and language teaching organisations

fiona-thomas-net-languages.jpgThe following is an excerpt from a guest post over on eltjam by Fiona Thomas, Director of Languages at Net Languages in Barcelona on the topic of the current climate on EFL social networks.

Over the last year I have noticed a shift in how some EFL publishing companies and other EFL groups are moving away from just talking about what they are doing and how wonderful their products, services and authors are to sharing interesting blog posts, discussions and information generated by other publishing companies and EFL professionals. This current climate on EFL social networks is refreshingly energising and is a great forum for growth at both individual and industry levels.

To a certain extent this is an example of co-opetition, a concept I was first introduced to back in 1999. For those of you not familiar with the term, it is a mixture of cooperation and competition which arguably leads to a supportive, innovative, and pro-development work culture and climate. However, although at an industry level EFL co-opetition is on the up, and publishing companies and individuals are reaping the benefits, few language schools seem to be fostering this sort of climate within their organisations.

A lot of language schools either seem to be very cooperative or very competitive, but few seem to bring the two forces together. Few recognise the benefits of nurturing a sharing, collaborative environment a long with stimulating and rewarding individual excellence. Being competitive is part of human nature and so encouraging a certain amount of competitiveness is healthy I feel in any organisation. This is why we love playing games and one of the reasons why the concept of gamification is so popular in the EFL industry at the moment. We rise to the challenge of trying to beat out opponents and strive to win. A competitive environment, therefore, provides us with an incentive to do things faster, better, cheaper, etc. with corresponding benefits for our organisation where we work.

Read the full post at eltjam.

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September 17, 2013

Publishing | Awards & Competitions

Extensive Reading Foundation announces award winners

ERF-LLL.jpgThe Extensive Reading Foundation announced the winners of its annual Language Learner Literature Awards at the 2nd World Congress in Extensive Reading in Seoul, South Korea on Sunday. The full list of winners is below.

In 2004, the Extensive Reading Foundation established the Language Learner Literature Award for graded readers in English. The Award is annual, for books published in the previous year. The Award aims to support the development of language learner literature in English, and to encourage extensive reading in language education.

These awards are conferred each year on books that are selected for their outstanding overall quality and likely enduring appeal. An international jury makes the final choices, taking into account the Internet votes of students, teachers and others from around the world.

Winners of the 2013 Extensive Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award.

Young Learners: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
By Washington Irving
Retold by Casey Malarcher
Illustrated by Fabio Leone
Publisher: Compass Publishing (ISBN: 978-1-59966-678-5)
Judges’ comment: Innovation and classic story-telling are mixed seamlessly in this story. The book includes a playlet for a class performance and wonderful illustrations.

Adolescents and Adults - Beginners: The Girl with Green Eyes
Author: John Escott
Illustrated by: Dylan Gibson
Publisher: Oxford University Press (ISBN: 9780194794343)
Judges comment: Who is the girl with the green eyes? Why is she so interested in Mark? And is the man in the hotel really her stepfather? Find out when you read this story. Boy meets girl --- with a difference!

Adolescents and Adults – Elementary : Les Misérables
By Victor Hugo
Retold by Jennifer Bassett
Illustrated by Giorgio Bacchin
Publisher: Oxford University Press (ISBN: 978-0-19-479440-4)
Judges' comment: This well-written retelling is an excellent way for beginner/elementary level learners to get to know this great story. We found ourselves involved in the story, caring about the characters. In particular, the "set-the-stage" sections help the reader quickly catch up on important events without creating an overly-complex narrative.

Adolescents and Adults – Intermediate: The Green Room
By Robert Campbell
Illustrated by Valentina Russello
Publisher: Helbling Languages (ISBN: 978-3-85272-327-3)
Judges’ Comment: This is story about adolescents’ conflicts and growing up process. What makes it special is the clever way in which the author interweaves the main plot with the plot of the play-within-the story. This is a well-constructed narrative with a cleverly written plot that develops exploring parallels with Shakespeare's work.

Adolescents and Adults - Upper Intermediate/advanced: Manhunt
By Richard MacAndrew
Map artwork by Malcolm Barnes
Publisher: Cambridge University Press (ISBN: 987-01-107-62455-1)
Judges' comment: This original murder mystery, set in a rural community, is a compelling read for crime story enthusiasts. Moving back and forth between the voices of the criminal and the police, MacAndrew draws the reader into the narrative. With clear, yet vivid language, the reader is able to participate in the problem-solving of the detectives as they unravel the mystery.

Click here for a list of all 2013 candidates.

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September 03, 2013

UK | Publishing | Online

Macmillan revises definition of marriage to include gay couples

gay-pride-march.jpgMacmillan's is the first UK dictionary to reflect the country's new law on same sex marriage.

The online dictionary Macmillandictionary.com has become the first UK dictionary to revise its definition of marriage to reflect the change in the law allowing same sex couples to marry.

The definition of "marriage" now reads: "The relationship between two people who are husband and wife, or a similar relationship between people of the same sex," with the second clause newly added.

The revision follows the marriage (same sex couples) bill through its crucial reading in the House of Lords on 15 July and accompanies other changes in a significant update to the dictionary. One that is likely to offend grammar purists is the inclusion of "of" as a preposition for use with "bored", as in "bored of".

Macmillandictionary.com editor-in-chief Michael Rundell said the change to the definition of "marriage" might suggest a future redefining of the terms "husband" and "wife". "In a same sex relationship two men are probably not going to refer to themselves as 'wife', but if it's two women, they might, so we need to keep an eye on that."

The Macmillandictionary.com definition of wife is "the woman that a man is married to", and husband is "the man that a woman is married to".

Changes to the official definitions of words are guided by analysis of their usage. "We have a corpus of two billion words, a huge collection of text including books, magazines and recorded speech, which we analyse in great detail to understand frequent and common usage," Rundell said.

Read the full article from The Guardian.

Photograph: Lee Harper/Corbis

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August 16, 2013

Journals

Cambridge to publish Language and Cognition from 2014

language-and-cognition.jpgThe UK Cognitive Linguistics Association (UK-CLA) and Cambridge University Press recently announced that Cambridge will publish the UK-CLA journal Language and Cognition from 2014.

Language and Cognition is the only journal of its kind to focus explicitly on the relationship between language and cognition and is a venue for the publication of high quality, peer-reviewed research.

Appearing quarterly in print and online, the journal publishes research from the full range of subject disciplines, theoretical backgrounds, and analytical frameworks that populate the language and cognitive sciences.

Language and Cognition will be joining Cambridge’s world-leading portfolio of linguistics books and journals. The journal will also benefit from the sophisticated functionality of Cambridge Journals Online including online before print FirstView publication, online manuscript submission and peer review systems.

Professor Vyvyan Evans, President of the UK Cognitive Linguistics Association and General Editor of Language and Cognition, commented: "There is no journal quite like Language and Cognition. It is a truly transdisciplinary forum for researchers exploring the language-cognition interface. It is open to scholars in areas from neuroscience to sociology. It has a wonderfully dedicated editorial team, who, having presided over its birth in 2009, are today celebrating its next step: joining the Cambridge University Press family of journals, where we hope it will continue to thrive, engaging more authors and readers than ever with its innovative brand of non-ideological, rigorous, multi-modal research into the human linguistic and communicative faculty."

Ella Colvin, Cambridge University Press Director of Publishing, Social Sciences, said: "We are delighted that our highly regarded language and linguistics journals list will be strengthened with the addition of Language and Cognition. This new partnership presents the opportunity to apply our publishing strengths across disciplines to maximise the exposure and visibility ofLanguage and Cognition to a worldwide audience."

Volume 6, the first to be published by Cambridge, will include a special issue on interaction in language and cognition.

UK-CLA Language and Cognition website

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Publishing | Online

Pearson advances into digital, reports half year growth

Education-PearsonPearson - no longer a publisher, now a "learning company" - buys into English language learning platform Voxy as part of its ongoing switch from print to digital. The company now has 50% of revenues coming from digital and services, reports The PIE (Professionals in International Education) News.

Leading learning company, Pearson, recently partnered with investment fund Rethink Education to lead an $8.5m investment in Voxy, an English language learning platform with 2.5 million users. The global giant is pro-actively repositioning itself to be embedded in digital delivery and following solid half-year results, bullish about the prospect for growth in the education sector.

The company plans to incorporate Voxy’s products and technology into its suite of services it offers to learners as it continues to transition away from traditional print into digital learning.

The investment comes as the company releases its interim results up to 30 June which show like-for-like revenue was up 1%, driven mostly by the company’s North American Education business and movement in developing markets.

John Fallon, chief executive, said in a statement: “In trading terms, 2013 has begun much as we expected. In general, good growth in our digital, services and developing-market businesses continues to offset tough conditions for traditional publishing.”

Read the full article from The PIE News.

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August 15, 2013

Publishing | Online | Business

Disruptor or disrupted? How to be among the 9% that survive

EdTechYet another excellent post from Laurie Harrison over at eltjam on digital disruption of the ELT publishing industry. If newspapers are any guide, only a fraction of publishers will survive the coming storm.

A recent scary-sounding post on FutureBook by Suw Charman-Anderson (Will you be in the nine percent of publishers that survive?) about recent research into disruptive innovation and what it means for the publishing industry got me thinking about what it might mean for ELT publishing specifically. A few weeks ago I posted a primer on disruptive innovation in which I made the case for EdTech as a disruptive force in ELT. I thought it might be interesting now to delve into this a bit more and explore what it is that a disruptive ELT publisher might do, and how to avoid being among the ranks of the disrupted.

The background here is that former Harvard Business School professor, Clark Gilbert has carried out research into the newspaper industry as it’s been collapsing under the weight of online disruption. Maybe it’s a leap to think this could equally apply to ELT publishing, but let’s stick with it and see how it works out. Gilbert set out six principles that he sees as essential in order to survive. How does ELT publishing shape up?

Read the full article from eltjam.

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August 14, 2013

Journals | Nepal

Call for papers, Journal of NELTA 2013

np.pngThe editorial board of the Journal of NELTA (Nepal English Language Teachers’ Association) would like to invite contributions for the 2013 issue.

First published in 1996, the Journal of NELTA is a premiere publication of Nepal English Language Teachers’ Association (NELTA). This journal has been an integral part of NELTA’s mission for ‘enhancing the quality of English language teaching and learning through professional networking, supporting and collaboration’.

It is also a means towards achieving NELTA’s goal of providing a ‘forum for exchanges of ideas and experiences at national, regional and international levels’.

The editorial board would like to invite contributions for the 2013 issue of the journal. Contributors are encouraged to make their work relevant to classroom teaching as well as to serve the larger purpose of creating or promoting ELT discourses at local, national, and regional contexts. Contributions that deal with ELT theories and methods will serve the professional community only to the extent that they are situated in the authors' own practices and/or in the contemporary educational and social contexts. The objective of this volume is to gather the voices of teachers, scholars, and educationists who are best able to define and advance the conversation and practice of ELT.

Manuscript must be submitted as an email attachment accompanied by a well-written cover letter to the editorial address: neltajournal@gmail.com or neltaeditorialboard@gmail.com. All enquiries and communication related to the articles for the Journal of NELTA should also be sent to the same email address.

The deadline for submission is September 30, 2013.

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August 12, 2013

Uruguay | Chile | Argentina | Publishing

Cambridge English take anniversary celebrations to South America

cambridge-english-south-america.jpgCambridge English Language Assessment recently posted about a series of events held in South America to mark its centennial.

A series of events were held across South America in May to celebrate 100 years of Cambridge English exams. The events in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay highlighted the important part exam centres and key individuals in the region have played in the Cambridge English story.

The British Ambassadors for Argentina, Chile and Uruguay were guests of honour at VIP receptions in Buenos Aires, Santiago and Montevideo – with around 100 guests attending each event. The series of events also saw a regional meeting of Centre Exams Managers in Buenos Aires, with representatives from Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay.

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August 06, 2013

Publishing

Delta announces 4 new e-book titles

teaching-unplugged.jpgDelta Publishing recently announced the publication of four titles from the Delta Teacher Development Series that are now available to purchase from Amazon as e-books. "Teaching Unplugged", "Teaching Online", "Digital Play", and "Spotlight on Learning Styles" are now on sale in the Kindle store. If you don't own a Kindle you can download a free Kindle reading app from Amazon to enable reading on every major smartphone, tablet, and computer.

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July 17, 2013

India | Publishing | ELT People

Manas Saikia, MD of CUP India, announces retirement

manas_saikia.jpgManas Saikia, founding partner and Managing Director of Cambridge University Press India, has announced he will be retiring at the end of April 2014.

Manas has had a long 28-year association with Cambridge University Press, since he joined in 1985 as a sales representative. He created Foundation Books with his partner Vinod Vasishat, after an exchange crisis made conditions difficult for importing books.

In 2006, Cambridge acquired a stake in Foundation Books which then became Cambridge University Press India. Cambridge increased its share in 2009 and has now agreed to acquire the remaining shares to give it full ownership. Manas has announced his retirement from the Board, but agreed to stay on as Managing Director during the transition period until the end of April 2014. Recruitment for a new Managing Director will start immediately.

Cambridge University Press India has seen huge growth under Manas’s leadership. He has also facilitated the representation of both Cambridge International Examinations and Cambridge English Language Assessment in India.

Read the full announcement from Cambridge University Press.

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July 16, 2013

Online | Publishing | US

Death of the textbook—and the 50-pound bookbag

digital-evolution.jpgiPads and other devices are already in many classrooms, though they tend to supplement rather than replace the printed textbooks that weigh down the bags and backpacks of students the world over. But according to this USA Today article, not for much longer, at least in the US.

The Department of Justice and Apple are battling in court over e-book pricing, but that's not the only high-stakes brawl that's brewing in the publishing industry.

The multi-billion dollar textbook industry is also being shaken up by a slew of forces, from the publishers to tech startups, education non-profits, the government, university professors and, of course, Apple.

Textbook sales, for both higher education and K-12, will reach an estimated $13.7 billion in the U.S. this year, according to Outsell, a research firm. The overall market is expected to increase over the next few years as the student population is growing, according to Kate Worlock, an analyst at Outsell.

Just as with e-books, the shift comes as students turn to their tablets and smartphones for digital textbooks. Just take college student Clayton Brown, who carries an iPad to his biology class at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.

Read the full article from USA Today.

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July 12, 2013

Publishing

Have ELT brands become more important than ELT authors?

EdTechAnother excellent and thought-provoking article from eltjam on the issue of ELT titles and authors as "brands." A couple of changes at major UK publishing houses suggests that we may have moved from an age of author-led publishing towards brand-led publishing.

So what (or who) are the big ELT publishing brands? Well, the publishers themselves, of course; say any publisher’s name, and we’ll have associations with their brand. What else? Cambridge University Press’s in Use brand, without a doubt; Headway from Oxford University Press; Cutting Edge and Market Leader from Pearson; Global or onestopenglish from Macmillan; the list could go on and on. These are all individual courses, products or series, but they’re also all Big Brands. And, in most cases, they have individual authors, or teams of authors, behind them, who are often brands in themselves (as many successful authors are). But here’s the question: from a purely commercial perspective: what matters to customers more, the brand or the author(s) behind it?

The most obvious answer, of course, is that you can’t separate the two; that the author and the brand are completely intertwined. And that’s true. Or at least it has been up until now. But there’s a growing sense amongst the ELT writing community that there’s some change afoot in how the big publishers and authors are going to be working together from now on. Is that because we’ve moved away from author-led publishing towards brand-led publishing? And, if we have, what’s the difference?

Read the full article from eltjam.

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June 26, 2013

Publishing | Online

Call from journal on children’s literature in ELT

CLELE JournalThe call for papers for Volume 1, Issue 2 (November 2013) of the new CLELEjournal has been extended to July 1st 2013. This is a themed issue: Intercultural approaches to English language education through children’s literature. For further information about contributing please see http://clelejournal.org/call-for-papers/

Launched in May, CLELEjournal is a bi-annual, comprehensively peer-reviewed, on-line journal. The acronym (which rhymes with FREELY) stands for Children’s Literature in English Language Education and the publication is for scholars, teacher educators and practitioners involved in using and researching children’s literature in the field of English learning as a second, additional or foreign language. The journal investigates children’s literature as an art form, and as a framework with which to connect L2 literature teaching across the school years. The scope covers the affordances of children’s literature for L2 acquisition with pre-school infants through to young adults. CLELEjournal Volume 1, Issue 1, is now available online.

This first issue contains five papers sharing perspectives from Poland, Germany, Lebanon, India and Portugal, CLELEjournal offering perceptive and innovative ideas, suggestions and shared experience with students from primary through to secondary education. The texts referred to include picturebooks, nonsense literature and an alternate history written for young adults.

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June 25, 2013

Australia | Publishing | ELT People

The pity of war

ELT-publishingThe West Australian reports on an ESL teacher who is creating a series of fiction books for young readers about children triumphing over adversity in the world's war zones.

Little Safiyo arrived in Australia with a lifetime of conflict and hardship already behind her. At the age of seven, she had never been in a school or even held a pencil - but she was desperate to learn how to read and write.

When Safiyo first arrived in Australia, having fled her troubled homeland of Somalia, the children at her school frightened her. They were aware of the differences. Today, she is a top student and has made many friends. She now enjoys the admiration and respect of her classmates.

As an English as a second language (ESL) teacher, Lyn White has taught many children like Safiyo.

"I have had the privilege of listening to some incredible experiences of refugee and newly arrived children who had been displaced and traumatised by conflict," she says.

A passionate primary school teacher-librarian as well, White knew the power of story and considered the idea of creating a series of fiction books for young readers that would pay tribute to the courage and perseverance of these children.

Read the full story from The West Australian.

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June 05, 2013

China | Publishing

New edition of English-language textbooks unveiled

Teaching-English-in-China"The People's Daily Online recently reported on a new version of a popular series for primary and secondary learners of English in China.

A new edition and a larger-print version of Good English, a famous series of English-language textbooks from the United Kingdom, was unveiled at a news conference in Beijing on May 29.

The books, originally called Oxford Reading Tree and published by Oxford University Press, are English-language teaching materials for native speakers in the United Kingdom, and are used in over 80 percent of primary schools in the UK.

They are also used as English-language textbooks by more than 133 countries around the world, and were welcomed by teachers, parents and children after they were first introduced to and reprinted in China in 2008.

To better meet the needs of young Chinese English-language learners, China Youth Publishing Group, publisher of the books in China, said it decided to release the new edition and the larger-print version on the eve of International Children's Day, which is June 1.

Read the full article from People's Daily Online.

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May 30, 2013

Publishing

Pearson betting the house on digital

pearson-logo-fallon.jpg"ELT Jam reports on the ongoing shakeup at the major publishing house Pearson under CEO John Fallon.

Details continue to emerge about Pearson’s massive restructure and what it might mean for ELT. The consistent theme is a relentless focus on digital at the expense of all else. Basically, Pearson believe they know where the education market is going and are willing to bet everything on it, even though their current customers aren’t really there yet. But then, according to what follows, maybe that’s not a concern.

If you’ve missed the hype so far, the world’s biggest education publisher is spending £150m on a total restructure which involves an immediate move to digital learning, a focus on emerging markets, and a transformation from publisher to education services provider. If the English language learning market is worth $4billion a year, then Pearson still only have a very small chunk of it. And if you’re a company as successful and ambitious as Pearson, that just isn’t good enough – so a change of direction is needed. In order to deliver this change, the company have recently announced their new senior management team.

Read the full story from ELT Jam.

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May 22, 2013

Publishing

Macmillan Education in ELT partnership with Knewton

Teaching-English"Macmillan Education has announced a global partnership with personalised learning specialists Knewton to produce a new generation of digital English Language teaching materials.

The publisher's Knewton-enhanced materials will become available to students in 2015 and will offer "a fully adaptive experience, featuring real-time student recommendations and highly personalised instructional and assessment content specially designed for language learning".

Bryan Fletcher, Macmillan Education global digital publishing director, said this was Knewton's first global English Language teaching deal.

"What Knewton does is take learning data, and have a very robust system of data categorisation and analysis. The partnership will help us come up with better learning analytics and recommendations," he said. "We'll create big online courses, blended courses . . . When a student does something online, a lot of data is generated. We will be able to analyse that to understand students' weaknesses and strengths, and analyse what type of materials help a particular type of student. We can personalise learning."

A New York-based adaptive learning startup launched in 2008, Knewton also has partnerships with a number of learning companies, publishers (including Pearson, Wiley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), universities and schools. The company has said it expects to reach 5 million students by the end of this year.

Read a related story from Gigaom.

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May 10, 2013

Publishing | Republic of Korea | Events | Awards & Competitions

LLL Award finalists announced

Extensive-Reading-World-Congress" The Extensive Reading Foundation (ERF), an unaffiliated, not-for-profit organization that supports and promotes extensive reading in language education, announced the finalists of the 10th Annual Language Learner Literature (LLL) Award for books published in 2012.

An international jury chose the finalists in five book categories, taking into account online votes and comments of students and teachers around the world. The winning books will be announced at the 2nd Extensive Reading World Congress in Seoul, on September 13-15, 2013, and concurrently on ELTBooks.com.

You can order all the shortlisted books from ELTBooks.com, where you can also see an overview of all winning titles and finalists, sorted by categories.

See also:
More articles on Extensive Reading

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