Helping the World to Learn English

Laura Pearson, Content Strategy Director, English Language Teaching

What is your role in the English Language Teaching division?

I manage a team of about 300 people in design, editorial, digital solutions. We are responsible for creating all of the products that we sell around the world. Our priority is really trying to meet the customer needs as best as we can.

What inspires you most about working for OUP?

I love working for OUP because we are a mission-based organisation. There are billions of people out there, looking to learn English in order to improve their lives. In places like Vietnam the majority of a family’s income goes to their children learning English because they believe that that is going to be their ticket to a better life. And that really inspires me to get out of bed in the morning.

How is digital impacting OUP?

Everything in our business right now is impacted by digital, whether it is the digital platforms and systems that we’re using, or the digital products that we’re creating. This, in fact, is what is going to enable us to reach more people in the world, more people than we could have ever dreamed of doing in the past. And that is very exciting.

How has English Language Teaching at OUP changed over the past 5 years?

One of the biggest changes within ELT has been a shift from just producing materials to also providing services. One of our core areas of expertise happens to be in teacher training and professional development, and that’s what really sets us apart from the competition. We prioritize developing strong relationships with teachers by supporting them, training them, and giving them everything they need so that they can be successful in the classroom.

What is required to be successful at OUP?

More than ever, it is important to be able to communicate and collaborate well. The kinds of products and services that we are creating require us to work in close partnerships with teachers, developers and suppliers, and of course cross-functionally within OUP.