Institutional Website Homepages
As of January 2013, University Advancement is responsible for the official UCCS institutional website homepages and is leading a redesign by developing a long-term strategic vision, content strategy, information architecture and user-experience design that will help achieve the mission of the UCCS homepage. University Advancement is working closely with the Information Technology Department and is seeking broad participation from campus.
This project aims to create a cohesive set of institutional website homepages, addressing the high-profile general-purpose pages of the UCCS website (the "first few clicks") and implementing a strategy that supports the university's current needs and allows us the flexibility to meet future requirements. The goal is to contribute to the credibility and positive reputation of the university, and improve the experiences of prospective students, current students, faculty, staff and partners in their work and study.
The project is focussed on general information pages, and will continue to direct traffic to the various department- and office-level websites.
IT Web Services will continue to develop and maintain the Web Content Management System (wCMS), and continue working with colleges, departments, offices, and programs to assist with developing their own websites.
The Current Website
The current homepage will continue to be maintained, though beyond regular updates to the calendar, news, and photos and routine maintenance, no major changes are planned. If you have any issues with the current website, please contact IT Web Services.
Front-end prototypes are maturing, and some draft copy is being integrated into the prototypes for user testing before CMS integration begins.
Content copy is being researched and written. Early front-end prototypes were shared with IT Web Services and campus volunteers for feedback.
Front-end prototyping (combining information architecture, style tiles, and wireframes into early HTML to test and develop in browser) has begun.
Early front-end design work (such as style tiles and wireframes) has gone through several iterations, with feedback from IT Web Services and campus volunteers, and direction from informal user testing. Front-end design work will soon transition from abstract to rapid prototyping. Update given to LT.
Early discussions about CMS integration are taking place with IT Web Services. Early front-end design work is beginning, including style tiles, wireframes, and page types. Quotes for assistance with content production have been requested.
The Strategy Phase is wrapping up and the Design and Development Phase will begin shortly (more information about the project phases are available in the Project Outline PDF.) A summary of the project progress was given to the Information Technology Advisory Counsel, the UCCS Communicators Group, and the Integrated Marketing Committee.
Basic click-tracking was set up on the home pages to begin collecting very elementary usage and visitor flow data. Insights from the early click-tracking data were integrated into the content requirements for the Information Architecture working group, which met several times and developed a site map working draft informed by navigation convention research, industry white papers, best practices and secondary research.
A small working group was put together to support the development of the site information architecture. An initial draft of content requirements was created using data from the discovery phase, including the Prospective Student Subcommittee findings, UCCS Website Survey findings, white papers and secondary research, competitor analysis, search term analysis, server logs and traffic analytics.
Server logs for 2012 were delivered by IT and analyzed. Findings were combined with information from previous surveys, interviews, and other information from the earlier discovery phase to begin developing a list of goals, requirements, strategies, and content needs. Advancement also began compiling baseline data for tracking metrics.
The UCCS Leadership Team reviewed and approved the project charter. Advancement began a basic content inventory analysis, cataloging existing content and working with IT Web Services to collect information on the previous content strategy. A feedback mechanism was also added to the homepage to begin collecting ongoing ratings and feedback from visitors, and Advancement compiled and categorized the feedback and suggestions from earlier research.
University Advancement, working with IT and IR, conducted a wide variety of primary and secondary research for the project (discovery phase) and developed a project charter.
DocumentsPrototypes v14 October 2013 Style Tile v7 July 2013 Wireframes July 2013 Project Update / Overview July 2013 Information Architecture May 2013 Project Outline March 2013 Ten Recommendations (UCCS Website Survey) February 2013 Sample Feedback (UCCS Website Survey) February 2013 Categorized Feedback Overview (UCCS Website Survey) February 2013 Project Charter for the UCCS Institutional Website January 2013
Opportunities to Get Involved
Project updates will be posted to this website, and shared with various campus groups such as the Information Technology Advisory Committee (ITAC), the Integrated Marketing Committee, and the UCCS Communicators group.
Feedback is always welcomed and appreciated. Consider submitting feedback and suggestions, as well as rating the current website, using the feedback mechanism on the homepage.
If you would like to volunteer time, or have any questions or comments, please contact Jeff Foster.
Multimedia Marketing Specialist