by Bethany Lund-Yates
Charley Darbishire, founder of Educake Science, visited Oxford Brookes to describe his experience setting up an online educational platform. Educake is a learning resource focused on secondary science, and is designed to help teachers reduce their workload. It does this by providing thousands of homework and revision questions, which cover multiple curriculums, and are marked by the system itself. Educake also has the benefit of allowing teachers to track their students’ progress, as well as targeting topics that need to be readdressed.
by Simon Phillimore
On the first of March we were lucky enough to have Mariana Morris of Oxford Computer Consultants give a presentation on a most modern phenomenon – digital UX and UI, or to give them their full titles, User Experience and User Interface. Unknown to many of us, each and every day we engage in a UX or interact with a UI, whether we are simply checking Facebook, buying something off Amazon, or writing a blog post.
by Kayla Schoch, MA Digital Publishing
For some, the thought of coding, scripts, and metadata is as horrible as the thought of being one of the publishers that turned down Harry Potter. However, for Priya Packrisamy and Marcos F. Sanmamed—XML Content Specialists at Oxford University Press (OUP)—XML is more than its daunting, digital mask. For them, XML is an essential part of their jobs that allows them to transform publishing from print to digital.
by Franziska Boeswald, MA Publishing Media
Colin Goodlad, Senior Product Manager at Pearson Education, gave us a fascinating introduction to the digital side of publishing for GCSE science. His team consists of two parts: the development team and the delivery team. Both need to work closely together to achieve the best possible result.
by Nicola Timbrell, MA Publishing Subject Coordinator and 3 MA Students
This year eight MA Digital Publishing and Publishing Media students from Oxford Brookes University volunteered to help out behind the scenes at the renowned digital publishing conference, FutureBook 2016. They reported that it ‘was amazing’, and that ‘all of us shone individually and collectively’. Of course there was time to network with attending publishing professionals, listen to speakers, and learn a great deal about what is going on in the digital publishing industry.
While all were brimming with excitement and news, three students wrote up their experience of the day. I hope you enjoy reading their accounts, below.
by Catherine Hall
This event took place on 3rd November 2016 and was focused on publishers and retailers working within museums, galleries, and the heritage sector. Katie Bond of the National Trust, Samuel Fanous of the Bodleian Library, and Declan McCarthy of the Ashmolean museum kindly came to talk to us about the financial and business considerations that come into play when commissioning works.
Publishers from the cultural sector occupy an ambivalent position between other trade publishers and cultural bodies, which may explain why they have survived the recession so well. As others have folded, heritage publishing has moved more and more into the High Street. This is reflected by the kinds of works being produced in each of our speakers’ businesses.
by Martina Borg
As a relatively new MA Publishing Media student at Oxford Brookes University, I must admit to knowing very little about the Frankfurt book fair prior to joining the course. It was little more than a promising murmur when I signed up for the trip, but throughout our first month in the classroom we heard a new snippet of information about it practically every day ...
As the twenty-five of us on the trip came off the S-Bahn platform on Friday morning, we were swept into the venue along with throngs of other fair-goers. For book lovers, it is a bit like being a child in the busiest candy store you can imagine. The fair offers something of a unique opportunity for publishers to meet international partners and to discuss rights deals for upcoming works. Walking through the halls, I tried to fit in with the industry professionals milling to and from various publishers' stalls, and I was struck by the sheer number of appointments each publisher had throughout the day, from the big international power-houses, to the smaller, independent publishers hailing from practically all around the world.
by Gina Willis
On Friday 7 October 2016 fifteen MA Publishing students from Oxford Brookes University joined Oxford University Press staff from the global academic stock planning department for their annual away day. The aim of the day was to experience a modern concept of managerial training known as ‘Reverse Mentoring’, which involves the senior members of the group, (the OUP professionals) learning from the junior members of the group, (the students). This was implemented by splitting students and employees into five groups each being given a task.
by Jessica Roufaeil, MA Publishing Media
Academic publishing sometimes comes across as less attractive in the eyes of publishing students, who are dazzled by the idea of trade publishing — fiction, non-fiction, children’s. However, after Jonathan Glasspool, Managing Director at Bloomsbury’s Academic and Professional publishing, spoke to our publishing class at Oxford Brookes University, I believe that there may have been a few changes of heart.
by Francesca Zunino Harper
An OPuS event that took place on Thursday 29 September 2016.
It all started with the best possible ice-breaker and warm-up exercise: an entire hour filled with free red and white wine, courtesy of sponsors Atwood Tate recruitment agency. Is this the usual way to properly start a publishing career? If so, I’m definitely in. Having the social before the conference (thanks to the organisers, Beverley, Leander and Jane) certainly helps raise the temperature. When the talks began, the atmosphere was hot indeed, and so was the room, completely crammed with students and professionals. Of the four presenters - David Spencer from Elsevier, Emily Brand from the Bodleian Library, Robbie Cook from Rebellion, and Emily Pidgeon-Martin from Lidl – two were former Oxford Brookes students and all were genuinely enthusiastic about working in publishing, and about their studies in publishing at Brookes.