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Department of Education

Dr Penelope Woolf

Honorary Norham Fellow

Dr Penelope Woolf is Director of Impact at Oxford University Press (OUP).

I lead a team supporting colleagues across the world to evaluate OUP’s educational products and services. I am interested in research and, in particular, finding out about how OUP’s products and services are making a difference in the classroom. I was a SEND (Special educational needs and disabilities) governor and Chair of Impact Committee at a local Primary school.

With over 30 years’ experience in academic, educational and professional publishing, most of my career has been spent in editorial roles from commissioning to Editorial Director. I have worked for Pearson Education and Discovery Education (Espresso) as well as OUP and have also carried out consultancy for universities, EdTech start-ups and publishers.

I taught publishing and library students at University College London on the MA in Publishing and MA in Library and Information Studies for a number of years and supervised Masters dissertations. I referee journal articles and write book reviews specialising in digital content and impact.

I enjoy working across the publishing industry and was a member of and then Chair of the Academic and Professional Board and a member of the Educational Publishers Council at the Publishers Association. I have delivered presentations on publishing skills and academic publishing to publishers, MA publishing course leaders, PhD students, researchers and academics.

I was based at Oxford University Department of Education a day a week over four months in 2017 working collaboratively with Professor Alis Oancea. I advised on the Departmental Review, Communications Strategy and presented to staff and graduate students on how to think strategically about academic publishing. As a Norham Fellow, I have continued to share expertise with staff on the evaluation of interventions and the impact of educational products and services. I was a member of the advisory board, chaired by Professor Judy Sebba, for the International Database of Education Systematic Reviews (IDESR).

Research interests:

Evaluating the impact of educational products and services.

Learning design and product development.


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