The University of Tennessee Center for Executive Education is a specialized component of the university’s graduate program that focuses on professionals who want to continue their education in a shortened, convenient timeframe. Using their High Compression LearningSM method, the Center offers a variety of MBA level degrees and programs designed for various career paths and student goals. The Center tapped In10sity to redesign its website, overhaul the navigation, improve usability for prospective students, and upgrade the content management system.
Effectively designing a university website can be a daunting task. Fortunately, the new site would be the second one designed by In10sity for the Center since 2008. Because of this history, the learning curve was dramatically reduced. Like any major website for higher learning, the old site grew to a point where the architecture had to be re-envisioned to make it easier to use. Since the Center offers educational solutions for Aerospace, Physicians, Executives, Professionals, and more, the information architecture of the project had to incorporate what would become 11 different sub-sites: one for each degree and program. With an emphasis on usability, the new site needed to do a better job of directing prospective students to the information they sought such as how to apply, how to compare the different MBA programs, and how to “take away” information. While making the public side of the site easy to use was paramount, making back-end administration easy was just as important. With technology moving as fast as it does, new and improved ways to manage and keep the site updated with fresh content had to be developed.
In10sity, being no stranger to large-scale web design projects, worked in concert with the team at the Center for Executive Education to architect a solution that would efficiently organize the information on the site while making that information easy to find. The outcome of this collaboration was a self-aware navigational system that unfolds based on the interest of the site visitor (a deceptively simple solution for a vast amount of content covering 5 MBA degrees and 6 executive level programs). Making the site easy to use means more site visitors converting into applicants and, ultimately, converting into students. In10sity’s design team focused on delivering engaging slideshow graphics and calls-to-action while the programming team implemented PDF Generator, an innovative way for site visitors to collect information and create a custom PDF for future review. Being a long time customer, the Center enjoyed an early version of the inPower Content Management System. In10sity upgraded the back-end to the newly developed inPower CMS 2.0, making the site easier than ever to manage and maintain.