USD Wins Best in Class for New Kroc School Website
On March 27, 2017, University of San Diego was awarded Best in Class for excellence in the design, development and implementation of the Kroc School of Peace Studies website in the University category.
The honor, granted by the Interactive Media Awards, recognizes that the project met and surpassed the standards of excellence that comprise the web's most professional work. The judging consisted of various criteria, including design, usability, innovation in technical features, standards compliance and content. In order to win this award level, the site had to meet strict guidelines in each area — an achievement only a fraction of sites in the IMA competition earn each year.
The Kroc School website is filled with new features that will help make the information-seeking process easier for prospective audiences:
- A responsive design which allows site visitors to access information anywhere at any time.
- A hero area that uses repeating hexagons for photo layout, which connects to physical elements in the school's building and is used as a brand element in the school's marketing materials.
- A home page "Impact Filter" for our prospective audience to learn about school news, events, or programs that connect with specific issues they are interested in.
- An abundance of database-driven content on subjects such as women peacemakers, current and past students, distinguished lecture series, and publication archives, making the content updates for maintainers easier and the layouts consistent from resource to resource. Fifteen new systems were built to accommodate the various content needs of the new website.
- Newly written and edited content throughout the website, which guided the architecture and the design process for the new site.
- A new News Center, Events Calendar, Spotlights hub, and Blogs all sharing information about the school, its faculty and staff, and related centers and institutes.
- A social media hub powered by TwineSocial to aggregate the school's content from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms.
- A new faculty and staff directory with filtering, search, research information, and larger photos for learning about the award-winning faculty at the university.
The information architecture is strategically organized, and content was mindfully raised from the department and center level in the previous website to the school level on the new website, alleviating the need for students to track information in multiple places to find what they are looking for.
The plan is to use analytics and surveying tools to adjust to the changing needs of our prospective audiences and to allow the site to evolve with those needs.
About the Interactive Media Awards
The Interactive Media Awards recognize the highest standards of excellence in website design and development and honor individuals and organizations for their outstanding achievement. Sponsored by the Interactive Media Council, Inc., a nonprofit organization of leading web designers, developers, programmers, advertisers and other web-related professionals, the competition seeks to elevate the standards of excellence on the Internet. For more information, visit http://www.interactivemediaawards.com.
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