Using the profile and evaluation notes from previous sessions, we have developed a prototype SSP home page (PDF).
The prototype includes the main navigation tool we discussed earlier. A few additional items have been added (we will probably continue to revise/simplify presentation of navigational items — at this point we are adding additional navigational items so that we know what other new information we plan to include in the new site).
We retained the welcome message. The information presented in this block/group of content was deemed to still be important for prospective/new students. Later during the semester we might consider switching the welcome message out to something else. But, at the start of the semester, the welcome message was still needed.
We have added a head titled “Information for current students”. Announcements/blurbs were re-written by Carol and included in this prototype .
In the right hand column, we have three main headings: “Advising contacts”, “Important dates”, and “Plan your degree”. Using these headings we have grouped similar information together. As we move forward we will likely consider adding stronger visual cues to distinguish each group from the others. For example, a calendar icon for important dates.
Overall, the length of the page has been dramatically reduced. Initial impressions of the announcement/blurbs is that they feel a little too long. We may want to look into having shorter announcements with links to further detail. However, prior to making a change we will have to discuss in detail each of the announcements to determine if such a change makes sense.
For now, we will likely pause further development of the home page and focus on the other sections and content presented on the site.