Temple Times Online Edition
    MARCH 17, 2005
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New look paves way to Web redesign

Capitalizing on Temple’s new logo system and graphic identity standards, a revamped University home page debuted during spring break.

The interim redesign, which encompasses 30 additional high-level navigation pages, is meant to bridge the gap between the previous Temple Web site and a total redesign that will be rolled out later this spring. The interim design launched last week and the eventual total redesign are being carried out by University Communications in close collaboration with Computer Services.

“The interim redesign is a way to introduce Temple’s new graphic identity into our own Web site, but it is also a step toward making more effective use of our home page as a way to market the University,” Chief Communications Officer Mark Eyerly said.

“The previous site was highly functional, but it didn’t do much to enhance our image,” he continued. “We want the home page to help convey to visitors the look, feel and vibrancy of today’s Temple.”

Given the Web’s ubiquity, most people — especially prospective students and faculty — will discover the University online. Therefore, Eyerly said, the strength of Temple’s reputation is partially related to the strength of its Web site.

“Eventually, our new Web site will help to brand Temple as a preeminent research university with strong and diverse academic programs and an exciting campus atmosphere,” he said.

In addition to visual enhancements, the interim redesign and future modifications will bring a consistent collection of links to each Temple Web page, a global navigation system that will make Temple’s site easier to traverse.

Temple’s Web presence mirrors its physical presence, said Web Communications Manager David McOwen. Its estimated 200,000 pages reflect the many schools and colleges, satellite campuses, departments, centers, divisions and units that make up the University.

“Because temple.edu is so massive, many visitors have to dig deep to find what they are looking for,” McOwen said. “We want to find that content and put it in front of the user. No matter what page a visitor lands on, there should be a logical way to steer them where they want to go.”

Eventually, each Web page at Temple will include a universal set of navigation links and specific graphic requirements, so that a Web user on any Temple page knows that he or she is on a site that is part of the University. Nevertheless, within this new global framework, individual schools and colleges will be able to create Web presences that advance their specific messages and meet the expectations of visitors to their sites, McOwen said.

“We recognize that prospective art students will expect something different from Tyler’s site as compared to what will impress prospective business students visiting the Fox site,” Eyerly explained. “Our global navigation and graphic framework will allow for that flexibility, but it also will clearly identify Fox, Tyler and all other schools, colleges and administrative units as being part of what makes Temple the great university that it is.”

After the launching of the interim design for the home page and its high-level pages, the total redesign of Temple’s Web site will unfold in four stages:

• Zero Defect, a local design firm, will propose new designs for Temple’s Web pages.

• The selected design will be introduced to the home page and will form the basis of a shared graphic and navigational framework to be used by sites throughout the University.

• Using those designs, an implementation firm will be retained to convert existing Web content into new Web pages.

• A content management system will be deployed to allow Web administrators to update pages through a user-friendly program.

By Ted Boscia

For related story:
Temple adopts new graphic identity