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UW-Eau Claire to launch new home page Aug. 19

RELEASED: Aug. 16, 2011

new home page
Click on the image above to see a larger version of what the new UW-Eau Claire home page will look like.

EAU CLAIRE —The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire website will feature a new home page starting Friday, Aug. 19.

"We've made updates to the home page that will benefit those who use it, making it easier for them to get to the information they need when coming to our site," said Lillian Hillis, university Web coordinator. "The redesign also gives our home page a fresher look."

A campus work group researched statistics, conducted surveys and did usability studies with the website's audiences to identify needed changes, Hillis said. In addition to the new home page, the website's top-level pages that use the same navigation as the home page will be updated to reflect the new home page navigation, Hillis said.

An image of the new home page design can be viewed online. The following are key aspects of the new home page design:

  • In the global navigation area at the top right of the page, based on feedback from students, faculty and staff, the link to MyBlugold has been replaced by a link to CampS, and a link to D2L has been added. These changes ensure the resources most frequently used by the campus community are available in this popular area of the page, Hillis said.

  • The formerly gold horizontal navigation bar has been changed to blue, and the “Visitors/Community” audience label has been changed to “Community/Business.” This change is the result of feedback from community members about terms they look for when determining where to find the information they need on the university website. Items found in the pull-down menus under each audience category have been modified slightly based on recommendations from site users as well as on statistics regarding site usage and search habits.

  • The “Eau Claire Advantage” banner image and copy area beneath the gold navigation bar have been replaced with a rotation of featured images on the left that link to university highlights, and news and events tabs on the right. The new treatment keeps the featured images and accompanying messages in a prominent location while allowing university news and events information to be relocated toward the top of the home page. Event information in particular will be more easily found on the new home page than on the previous page, Hillis said.

  • Links located in several areas on the former home page (including the former "Quick Links" drop-down menu, left sidebar and page footer) have been combined and categorized in topical links columns beneath the featured images and news and events. A “Featured items” section contains links of current interest, such as campus construction news and administrator searches. "Our surveys and usability studies with the website's various audiences are showing what home page links people most frequently use, and this streamlining and categorizing of links will make it easier for them to find what they most often look for," Hillis said.

  • A new area across the bottom of the page features links highlighting ongoing and significant programs and activities that have a longer timeframe than most other news and events. This change fills a need because a home page region for promotion of these types of programs and activities was not previously available, Hillis said.

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JP/AH

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