SYP Conference 2012 – Seminar 2: Beyond the Textbook

Andrea Carr – Managing Director, Rising Stars

Andrea left university as a linguist, started off as a publishing assistant at Octopus and stayed there for 15 years working across editorial, sales, and rights and ended up in marketing. Ten years ago she took the opportunity to set up Rising Stars and moved from the *glamorous* trade publishing arena into the dynamic, challenging and creative area of educational publishing – she says she’s never looked back. Andrea’s sheer passion for educational publishing is infectious; she is involved in injecting technology into schools in the form of iPads, computers and Interactive Whiteboards and surrounds herself with forward thinking educators so she can market her products to deliver. Marketing to children is also a huge part of what Andrea does in order to achieve and be successful; she describes them as a demanding but hugely rewarding market.

By immersing herself in being at the forefront of educational publishing, Andrea has learnt how to create eBooks, interactive software and wider content; she has seen the textbook become increasingly irrelevant where digital content is the present. An inspiring talk showing us all how rewarding a role in educational publishing can be…

Pedro Moura, International Sales Manager for Macmillan

Next up was Pedro to give us an insight into the ELT publishing market, he explained the huge importance of the English Language for things like travel, study, jobs, business and international relations – in fact Pedro had to complete an IELTs qualification before coming to the UK.  He gave us some interesting stats on English speakers:

–          There are 1 billion people learning English worldwide

–          400 million people speak English as their first language

–          800 million people speak English as a foreign language

The ELT market is mainly dominated by CUP, OUP, Pearson and Macmillan and they are seeing a distinct shift into course books becoming much more interactive and they have to come up with unique ideas for marketing new online based platforms. Pedro’s approach to digital was positive; there is a great deal of investment in digital and it is a huge growing market:

–          By 2015 3 billion people will have internet access

–          Governments are encouraging digital – particularly with reforms for Italy and Spain

–          E-readers and tablets are becoming mainstream – and are being used increasingly for educational purposes

–          Distance learning is growing – using online resources

–          Teachers prefer interactive course books

Pedro is passionate about the ELT market and is already seeing a rise in print/digital sales – he thinks the textbook will continue to exist but it will take on a much more interactive and digital format.



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