Shortlist for 2016 ALCS Educational Writers' Award

14 November 2016

We are delighted to reveal the three outstanding books, covering maths, art and Shakespeare, that have been shortlisted for the 2016 ALCS Educational Writers’ Award, this year focusing on the 11-18 age group.

The 2016 shortlist was chosen by judges Jonathan Lomas, Nicola Morgan and Nicky Ransley.

Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare by David & Ben Crystal, illustrated by Kate Bellamy (Oxford University Press)

Our judges said:

Far more than

 a dictionary, this visually appealing treasure chest is fun as well as informative, and gives a real insight into Shakespeare’s language and the rich world of his plays.


The School of Art by Teal Triggs, illustrated by Daniel Frost (Wide Eyed Editions)

Our judges said:

Engagingly written, it is beautifully clear and light-hearted – but never childish, and has the potential both to build artists, and help the rest of us understand the techniques of the artworks we encounter.


This is not a Maths Books: A Smart Art Activity Book by Anna Weltman, illustrated by Edward Cheverton and Ivan Hissey

Our judges said:

This is of course, a maths book; just not maths as you thought you knew it. With sheer visual pleasure on every page, it makes you itch to take up a pencil and get started on the designs.



The winner will be presented with £2,000 at the All Party Writers Group Winter Reception at the House of Commons on Tuesday 6 December.

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Now in its ninth year, the Educational Writers’ Award was established in 2008 by the Authors’ Licensing & Collecting Society (ALCS) and the Society of Authors (SoA) 'to celebrate educational writing that inspires creativity and encourages students to read widely and build up their understanding of a subject beyond the requirements of exam specifications'.


Each year the ALCS judging panel comprises a school librarian, a teacher and an expert on children’s writing.

Jonathan Lomas is a secondary school English teacher and author. He spent twenty four years teaching English and Drama at two leading state schools in London. For the past ten years he has been Head of English at La Retraite RC Girls’ School in Clapham Park, and has recently been preparing schemes of work for the new curriculum in English

Nicola Morgan is an award-winning author and international expert on adolescence. Her 2005 examination of the teenage brain, Blame my Brain, was short-listed for the Aventis Prize for Science, and  The Teenage Guide to Stress (2014) won the School Library Association award in both the readers’ and the judges’ categories.

Nicky Ransley has worked as a school librarian with students spanning the entire age range from 3 to 18, in both the private and maintained sectors.  She is now the librarian at The Henrietta Barnett School, in North London.