Feature articles about Oxford University Press around the world
Supporting communities through COVID-19
17 March 2020
As a global organization with more than 6,000 employees around the world, we, like many others, recognize the significant threat posed by the coronavirus. Our teams across the globe are working together to support and protect our people, customers, and communities, and ensure that education and research can continue in the face of these challenging times.
We have made our resources on coronavirus freely accessible in order to assist researchers, medical professionals, policy makers, and others who are working to address the pandemic. Our Academic Journals website has launched a new free hub of over 2,500 research articles and online chapters relevant to coronavirus and related topics, and we have also been added to the Google Scholar homepage which will help to facilitate searches for coronavirus research and articles. We have also signed a Wellcome Trust statement pledging to make relevant research available for the duration of the outbreak and joined efforts from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to make research and data immediately accessible via PubMed Central and other public repositories. In addition, in the UK we have made OxMed Online free to access for NHS staff in England, Scotland, and Wales to support the efforts of doctors and keyworkers.
As institutions temporarily close and more people move to online study, we are endeavouring to support students, academics, and lecturers with a range of free online resources. We have signed up to support the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) initiative which relaxes some key higher education copyright terms to give academics, libraries, and students increased access to learning resources during this difficult period. For university lecturers and staff we are also offering free access to online training programmes Teaching Online and Blended Learning to support remote instruction, and for students we are providing temporary free access to our eBooks via RedShelf and VitalSource in the US, and Kortext and BibliU in the UK. For institutional customers, we are inviting library customers to contact us via their reps to discuss their needs so that we can arrange bespoke access to the relevant academic books content online.
To meet the needs of school teachers, parents, and home-learners, we are offering free access to our education platforms for an extended period and are committed to supporting teachers through professional development training that can be accessed anytime, as well as offering teaching support for through Oxford Owl. Our colleagues in China and Hong Kong reached out to more than 24,000 teachers to find out what resources they need, and launched a specially-created webpage providing self-learning videos, worksheets, colouring books, online games, and free e-books. In China, we also developed freely accessible educational content for Tick-Tock! and WeChat which is easy to access from home.
For English language teaching (ELT) and learning, we have created home learning guidance including links to blogs, course related content suitable for distance learning, and professional development content, alongside course material to maximise home-based learning and links to our latest Alexa skills. We are also trying to help the language learning community stay connected and up-to-date through our English Language Teaching Facebook networks and groups.
Speaking of our team’s efforts around the world, OUP’s Chief Executive Nigel Portwood, says: 'I’ve been really impressed with how teams around OUP are devising ingenious ways to carry on supporting our customers and learners during the coronavirus epidemic. Thanks to everyone for their resilience and creativity in the face of this unprecedented threat. We hope this goes some way towards helping our communities access valuable education and research.'
As part of our mission to further education and research, we are committed to adapting to support our customers in this new climate. If you have been affected by a need to move to remote learning or teaching, or would like to see our full list of free materials on offer, you can find a comprehensive list of links to our relevant resources here.