New units to focus on teaching, learning and developing our people

The Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) and People and Organisational Development (POD) were formed as a result of a change programme involving the Oxford Learning Institute (OLI) and Academic IT.

The OLI and Academic IT names will no longer be used, but their services will continue within the new units, and increase the University’s focus on these strategically important areas.

Centre for Teaching and Learning

The Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) supports all those who teach at the University of Oxford and promotes a range of teaching practices that are relevant to Oxford's unique learning environment. It will offer a range of courses, support and services for colleagues across the University.

The CTL brings together Academic IT’s Technology Enhanced Learning team and the Educational Development Group from the Oxford Learning Institute (OLI). It will report to the Academic Registrar in the Academic Administration Division.

Professor Rhona Sharpe will take on the role of Director of the CTL from December 2019. Rhona was previously Head of Technology Enhanced Learning at the University of Surrey and has a wealth of experience in the field. She will be responsible for leading the development of a vision and long-term plan for the new Centre.

People and Organisational Development team

People and Organisational Development (POD) is the new name for the Professional Development Group at the OLI.

For leaders and managers, POD offers a range of practical support. This includes consultancy on management challenges, such as team effectiveness, team planning or communications, as well as on tackling change at the group, team or departmental level. POD offers face to face and online learning on leadership and management and personal effectiveness for all staff in the University. The POD team can also design, deliver, advise on and commission workshops and programmes and coaching and mentoring schemes in divisions.

POD reports to the Director of Human Resources, embedded within Personnel Services – allowing it to work closely with other HR teams and partners.

Change programme

The new units were created as part of a larger change programme related to the OLI and Academic IT. As a result of these changes, the OLI and Academic IT names will no longer be used. All existing OLI and TEL services will continue for the time being under the CTL and POD, and will evolve over time.

In the immediate future, the OLI ED and TEL teams will stay in their existing locations, and will move to a combined office in Littlegate House – alongside POD – from early 2020. The official launch of the CTL is planned for next year.

Martin Williams, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Education, said: 'High quality teaching and learning is at the heart of the Oxford experience, and it is important that we continue to invest in high quality provision – particularly in light of rapid developments in digital education. The Centre for Teaching and Learning will offer holistic advice and support for colleagues across the University – further enhancing Oxford’s excellent education.'

Anne Trefethen, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, People and GLAM, added: 'People are our most important asset. It is essential that we support their professional development at all levels, so that they can contribute effectively to the future of the organisation. I have been closely involved with the development of this important new unit and am confident it will make a significant difference in the long term.'

Visit the CTL website at

Vist the POD website at