UX Case Study- University Website Redesign

Singapore University Of Social Science

Project Brief

Redesign the Information Architecture (IA) and key pages layout/wireframes of a school/college website.

Project Goals

The goals for redesigning the website are as followed;

  • The revamped IA should cater to all 3 personas
  • Research on the current website & improve the current IA
  • Simplify the steps needed to find information & to reduce site confusion

INITIAL RESEARCH

University Background

Singapore University Of Social Science (SUSS) previously known as Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) is the 6th Autonomous University in Singapore. It aims to provide lifelong education, equipping learners to server society. It currently offers over 60 degree programmes.

USER PERSONA

3 types of persona have been identified for this project;

  • Mark (A prospective student, fresh from Junior Year)
  • Jessica (A current student, returning from school break)
  • John (A working adult, interested in higher education)

For this project, I will be focusing on the persona ‘Mark’

MARK USER FLOW

Creating a user flow for Mark helped me understand how he would use the site to find information pertaining to his needs & pain points. Having a user flow also helped break down the steps and the key pages needed for Mark.

Below are some of the user flows;

Student-Teacher Body Ratio
Scholarship Opportunities
College Programmes & Specialties

While doing the user flows for Mark, I found out that Information were not easily accessible and the website was missing information on hostel options & CCAs.

COLLABORATION

For the following research, a few of us who were working on the same project decided to collaborate to speed up the research process.

Content Audit

We reviewed every single page of the current website, reviewing content, breakdown of the pages, navigation and use of imagery. Some of the problems that we found out was that the current site has many duplicate links, the purpose of some the pages as well as linking to a whole new webpage. We listed out the pages in a spread sheet and filtered out contents which were either duplicated or redundant.

Card Sorting & TreeJack

Card sorting is a method used to help design or evaluate the information architecture of a site. In a card sorting session, participants organize topics into categories that make sense to them and they may also help you label these groups.

After the content audit, we each wrote down the relevant information needed for all 3 personas onto cards. We then filtered all 130+ cards into a sizeable 40+ cards needed for card sorting.

Card Sorting V1

We did an hybrid card sort at first, but we did not find it feasible as users has different understanding of the terms that we used. eg(Courses, Modules, Programmes, etc..)

Card Sorting V2

We redid our cards and launched the 2nd card sorting (Open Card Sort). We chose to do a open card sorting as we wanted to know how the users categorise the different cards.

TreeJack

We conducted a Treejack test study for all 3 personas. Users were given a set of tasks to complete based on their personas.

Mark Persona Task

PLANNING & DESIGN

Proposed IA

With the results that I gotten from Treejack & Card Sorting, I came up with a new IA for the site.

Comparison of user flow

It now takes less steps to reach to the information.

Prototype

FUTURE PLANS

  • Conduct more usability testing & reiterate the navigation according to the feedback received
  • Include Information on nearby hostels options rather than telling potential students that the university does not offer any campus stay in
  • Provide more information on the individual modules in the program, so as to allow the student to know what each module is about