Website redesign

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Introduction

This page is setting out the new structure of the schome community website.

There are in effect five parts of the site (we could argue whether some of them are part of the site or not ...):

  • Brochure site
  • Wiki
  • Forum
  • Second Life (SchomeBase)
  • Teen Second Life (Schome Park)
  • (Profiles)

We want all of these to be integrated together as seamlessly as possible.

We want to try to keep to the three click rule ...

Purposes of website

The website fulfils a number of different purposes for a number of different potential audiences.

Critically it is the schome website (which is much broader than the Schome Park Programme) - the Schome Park Programme is the most active part of the overall schome endeavour at the moment but it is only one subset of it - we need to make that very clear through the design of the website.

One of the problems we have to deal with is the perception that the Schome Park Programme is Schome - and that schome is thus about virtual education - and that schome is about school age learners. Those things are false:

  • Schome is about cradle to grave learning (lifelong) - it is relevant to FE, HE, adult, school, pre-school, etc etc etc
  • Schome will require physical spaces (face to face engagement) as well as the use of ICT/virtual spaces
  • The Schome Park Programme has as its overarching aim the need to enhance thinking about what schome might be like - to break free of constraints of current experiences of education, try out ideas, collect evidence about what works (the SPP has a number of other aims too - which tend to vary across phases of the programme - and link in with funders' interests)

There have been a number of 'projects' under the schome umbrella:

There are also a number of related projects which have been carried out by members of the schome team but were not at least initially labelled as being part of the schome endeavour, such as:

  • the eStrategy Implementation Review (which produced the eSIR Reference Statement - which informed the design of the approach/processes on Schome Park)
  • dICTatEd - which looks at people's visions about why we should be using ICT in education
  • My PhD - which was looking at how to enhance the impact of investments in 'educational' ICT and really brought home the importance of focusing on educational purposes rather than being driven by technology
  • A range of things that Jonty and Kieron are involved in - eg looking at use of heritage sites by disabled young people.

Potential audiences for the website

There are a number of potential audiences that the website needs to cater for:

Schommunity members (ie regular users) Return visitors New visitors
Education generally Education Index page (with links to stuff about Education generally) Intro page explaining what is available - with link to Education Index page
Future of education (schome) Schome index page What is schome page - with link to Schome index page
The Schome Park Programme SPP Phase 3 Page with events, rss feed from wiki and forum, communal blog, links to key pages What is the Schome Park Programme? Links to info about schome; why we are using SL; Phases 1, 2 and 3;
The Aspire Pilot/ASPIRE The Aspire Pilot index page What is the Aspire Pilot - link to AP index page
ICT in education ICT in ed index page Info about what this has to do with schome - link to ICT in ed index page
Virtual worlds (Second Life) SL index page What is SL, why are we using it in Schome Park Programme, link to SL index page

Brochure site

The brochure site is the fixed website at http://www.schome.ac.uk.

This has a horizontal menu (Brochure menu) which currently includes:

  • Home - Link to brochure site homepage - currently provides summary of what schome is and key activities under the schome banner
  • News - a list of references to articles in the press, tv programmes and items about schome on the web
  • Projects - a summary of key projects under the schome umbrella (which is now rather out of date)
  • Publications - a list of schome related publications (but members of the team)
  • Investors - list of current/past funders and info about 'opportunities for funders' (again out of date)
  • Forum - provides a link to the forum
  • Wiki - provides a link to the wiki
  • Contact - provides contact details
  • Site map - provides a site map with hotlinks to various parts of the website (see site map below)

Some questions:

  1. Are these the most important things to have in the brochure menu?
  2. Should they point to pages in the brochure site or to pages in the wiki? (At the moment most of them point to pages in the brochure site - which has the advantage that we have total control over the page content but has the disadvantage that updating is more difficult.)

Site maps

Providing a site map is one idea for how to help folk make sense of the website.

Site map version 1

Schome-website-map.jpg

Site map version 2

Schome-site-map.jpg

Site map version 3

Schome-map-08-04-01.png

Wiki menus

The wiki has a number of menus on the left of each wiki page. We have pretty much total control over these (we can add more menu blocks and change the name of the menu blocks and of their content). The current wiki menu structure looks like this:

site navigation
* Site map
* Forum
* Profiles
the schome park programme
* Schome Park mainpage
* Schome Park Events
* Schome Park bliki
* Second Life mainpage
useful stuff
* Help
* Popular pages
* Recent changes
* Wiki stats
search
toolbox
* What links here
* Related changes
* Upload file
* Special pages

Some questions:

  1. Are these the most important items to have in the wiki menu? (and if not then what should be in their place?)
  2. Are they grouped appropriately?

Portals

We may want to have a range of different 'front ends', portals if you must, for different audiences. These could have their own url (eg http://aspire-pilot.open.ac.uk/ or http://schomepark.open.ac.uk) - we need to decide if these 'homepages' are part of the wiki or are external standalone pages

Favourite pages

One way to help sort out priorities would be to identify which pages have been viewed the most frequently - though this may reflect pages folk have found rather than pages they wanted to find - and provides a cumulative total so may not reflect current interests - so needs to be treated with caution. For example, 'Current events' comes very high on the list of popular pages but is actually a defunct page!

Colour scheme

Schomelogo long.png

We'll stick with the OU Violet and OU Orange as colours, plus their tints.

Ouviolet.JPG 'OU Violet': RGB 133,111,179 Hex #856FB3
Ouorange.JPG 'OU Orange': RGB 239,104,32 Hex #EF6820


Current text box colours:

Header border violet #afa3bf
Header background violet #f5f1ff
Body border violet #ddcef2
Body background violet #faf5ff
Header border orange #efaf8e
Header background orange #fff5f1
Body border orange #f0d0b0
Body background orange #fffaf5