Web Appeal process
Web development is both art and science, and there is no absolute right or wrong. There are many ideas and opinions - both expert and casual – both data-driven and aesthetic. The process undertaken for the 2012-2013 redesign has been transparent and crowd-sourced with students, faculty, staff, managers, and the community at large. It has produced an aggregate of opinions, priorities, and perspectives from all constituent groups and interested parties to identify common themes and priorities. This synopsis is provided to answer frequently-asked-questions about this process and the final outcome. It is understood that there is no one-size-fits-all, and that the standards and criteria applied to the site redesign may not fit your particular need or situation.
This change-request and appeal process is provided to ensure your needs are met. Use this form to request a change to the LCC website www.lanecc.edu.
Submit your change-request using the form below, providing as much detail as possible.
The web and marketing teams will work with you to find an accommodation or solution.
If you are not satisfied with the outcome of step-two, you may request an appeal.
Appeals involve Executive Dean/Manager review of the change-request with all parties.
As the primary channel for public information, community connections, and online services, the Lane Community College website is the primary face of the college. First established in 1995 and last redesigned in 2004, many colleagues and technologies have contributed to the evolution of the site producing approximately 15,000 static webpages; 76,793 files for public consumption. Being a first-generation website, issues with timely content, appropriate content, presentation, consistency, and usability emerged.
In 2011-2012 a comprehensive revision of the site was launched to establish a second-generation web presence for the college. This includes the implementation of a content management system (Drupal), a content review/purge process, a graphic redesign, a re-organization of site content and navigation, and the introduction of web 2.0 features. The spirit of the new site reflects a spirit of campus renewal – introducing the idea that the site is one part of a comprehensive digital campus that is distinctly student-centric.
- Revitalize the online identity of Lane Community College.
- Provide a modern toolset that is robust and easy to use, to include web 2.0, multimedia, and social technologies.
- Increase marketing and outreach capabilities, to include search engine optimization (SEO), content syndication, and social network integration.
- Support institutional consistency in messaging, branding, identity, and presentation.
- Establish a new hardware and software infrastructure that is reliable, scalable, extendable, and robust.
- Establish a streamlined web authoring process for web editors across campus.
- Maximize usability and accessibility by reorganizing site content and navigation; and maximize universal access standards (Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973).
- Comply with current web standards, technologies, and best-practices as provided by the World Wide Web Consortium (WC3), federal and state governments, and Lane Community College.
- Establish mechanisms for quality assurance (QA) to ensure browser/OS compatibility, and content that is current and accurate.
With these broad goals in mind the web team initiated a series of research activities that included constituent advisors, focus groups, public surveys, open discussions/presentations, evaluation of best-practices, and usability testing. This engagement collected input from current students, future students (local high schools), faculty, staff, managers, and the broader community. Additionally, user traffic and navigation patterns were collected and analyzed from the current website using Google Analytics – allowing analysis and discussion of the top-destinations, top-landing pages, top search topics, etc. of our existing web visitors. The research was aggregated into a summary set of expectations to be required of the new site. Specific expectations were organized under five key themes that emerged from the research; findability, consistency, key-content, minimalist design, and engagement.
Findability is the ease at which users can find what they're looking for on the site. A number of recommendations were made to improve findability on our site, including improved search options, a user directory, improved maps and direction, and a mega-menu system that will potentially be included on all Lane web systems.
Consistency in this context refers to a coordinated presentation and organization of Lane's web properties and individual department/division sites. Multiple web portals exist (myLane, Moodle, Lane website) and are not coordinated in presentation, content, or function. Also, there is a lack of consistent presentation and information department to department – making information finding a challenge for students – particularly in their exploration of academic programs (departments).
Key Content in this context refers to *too much information* in the current site and an interest in streamlining and minimizing web information to be succinct and focused. Specifically, there is interest in streamlining and *repackaging* the top-priority tools and content such as the class schedule, catalog, program information, financial aid, etc.
Minimalist Design is an approach to the graphic design and organization of content on the site that doesn't overwhelm visitors with links and information. This aligns with modern web 2.0 trends and maintains that less-is-more – particularly on the front page and audience landing pages (current students, future students, community, and employees).
Engagement emphasizes the need to (a) leverage more multi-media (video, pictures) and less text (b) integrate social media more directly and (c) focus featured content more distinctly on student interests and the student community.
Unique Destinations & Audiences
One distinct outcome of the audience research was recognition that there is no one-size-fits-all solution, and there are some unique needs by distinct areas of the campus that may not be properly served in the new system. These areas generally have:
- a distinct audience with an external community orientation;
- a broad audience that serves all internal constituencies;
- a distinct destination or place that needs to be found by large groups or audiences; and
- a function or service point that distinctly differs from daily campus operations and instructional activities.
Noted examples include, but are not limited to, Athletics, CML, and the Foundation.
Distinct-destinations and services such as these may require a more customized web presence and set of online services to accomplish their unique mission. We would like to partner with any group that meets these criteria in outlining technical options, design options, support options, college branding requirements, system integration needs, technical needs, etc..
- The Webteam Blog
- Search Visualizations