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Ask a question: the University’s FAQ system

The ‘ask a question’ web page was launched on 19 January 2015. It allows visitors to find answers to questions that exist in the ‘Student Information Desk (SID)’ system. Users can either try and search for an answer or they can submit a question if they are unable to find an answer. By monitoring the…

29 May 2016Digital transformation

Making University news digital

Research has shown that digital users are rarely interested in the press release articles which are often shown under a ‘News’ heading on a university website. Back in 2013, Paul Boag quoted a report from Chris Scott who stated that “less than 1% of visitors view a news release.” The digital communications team at the…

19 April 2016Digital transformation

Prospective PG student survey results

The digital communications team aims to adhere to the principles of user-centred design in everything we do. An integral part of this process is collecting user feedback. This is important at the beginning of a project as a means of requirements gathering; throughout a project as we make iterative improvements; and finally at the end…

11 April 2016Content Digital transformation External website redevelopments

Benchmarking university websites

We wanted to benchmark our website against other university websites, both within the UK and worldwide to see how we compare with things like responsive design, intranet usage and standardised school sites. To do this I visited the websites for each Scottish, top 100 UK (The Completed University Guide) and top 50 world (Time Higher…

10 December 2015Digital transformation

Digital prospectus business case

On Wednesday 16 September, the Digital Communications Portfolio Board approved a business case for redevelopment of the external University website. In essence, what we will be creating is a digital prospectus where all information about undergraduate and postgraduate taught courses is provided in one place. We will be using our agile project management approach to improve…

2 November 2015Digital transformation Homepage prototype

Visual design principles for the University of St Andrews website

On 15 June 2015, the digital communications team launched the new University of St Andrews homepage. This is the first major milestone in a project that has been on-going before I started work here in 2013. We have created a product that’s functionality can be updated as web design trends progress. This allows our website…

30 June 2015Design Digital transformation

An introduction to the Digital pattern library

As members of a digital world, our students and staff demand a coherent experience that consistently reflects the brand and reputation of the University while allowing them to easily achieve the task at hand. Our vision is a consistent look, feel and behaviour of websites, web applications and other digital products throughout the University. At…

16 June 2015Design Digital transformation

Mobile first and responsive design

The core design mission of the new St Andrews website is to cater for mobile devices, as these are rapidly becoming the dominant medium for web. While most organisations still commission a website to look good on their computer first and work on mobile second, we have made the switch to a responsive web design…

3 June 2015Design Digital transformation

Why is the user important?

As we may have mentioned a few times already, the digital communications team is committed to a user centred approach to our work: whether that be research, design, content or build. We have placed users at the heart of the decisions we make, which is, in some areas, a radical departure from the way that…

25 March 2015Digital transformation

Hero banners: Why are they so attractive?

What is a hero banner? You see that big, wide section at the top of most modern websites? That section with the large catchy slogan and button that is effectively tempting you to click it? That section with the fresh, inspiring photograph that really compliments the company’s brand? Yeah. That’s a hero banner.

9 March 2015Design Digital transformation