With the start of the new academic year, The University of Texas-Pan American is putting its best face forward within the World Wide Web with the launch of a new, contemporary and more user-friendly Web site - www.utpa.edu.
The Web site's dynamic new look features content and a design that has improved both the usability and accessibility of the home page, according to Kumar Raman, director of UTPA's Internet Services.
"With the new redesign, we feel that we have achieved a cleaner look for our Web site, yet it also provides a fair amount of links on the home page where people can have one-click access to sites," Raman said.
He said they used analytical data from the Web site to find out the most popular links and search terms and then created the new site with the user's needs in mind.
"We took a user-centric approach. This is a process where you design the site to optimize the interface to how people interact with the Web site," Raman said. "People can get to information quicker, which also has a lot of cost-savings benefits to the University with reduced calls to the campus."
The new site also features links to social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, so students and alumni can interact and stay connected.
The Web Advisory Group (WAG), comprised of 10 members from various departments on campus, has been working for the last five months to research and implement the new design for the UTPA Web site, which underwent its last facelift three years ago.
The launch of the new Web site Friday, Aug. 28, coincided with Fall Convocation, the first gathering of the academic year for faculty and staff. In announcing the updated site, Interim President Charles A. Sorber said, "We wanted a creative unified look, easy navigation and organized content. I think once you go through the site, you'll agree the team has done a very impressive job."
"Everyone came together to produce the content and that helped the momentum and excitement for the project," Raman said. "It was really a collaborative effort, so that's why we were able to execute it in the short time span."
For more information about the redesign, or to submit comments or suggestions, e-mail WAG@utpa.edu.