SingaporePoly
Singapore Polytechnic
2017 - School website
Revamping
Wireframe
Website design
UX research
Background

This is one of the project briefs from UX Design course in General Assembly.

Brief by General Assembly

To revamp the current school's website — Singapore Polytechnic with the consideration of the provided personas (Will elaborate more under Research). The interactive prototype should meet all the needs for one of the personas, and the rest can be presented in the overall site map.

Background

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Singapore Polytechnic is the first established polytechnic in Singapore since 1954. Today’s SP offers both students and working professionals to further education with a profession.

Why does Singapore Polytechnic need a website?
  • To share valuable information with potential students and currently enrolled students
  • To save staff and administration time, a website can relay critical information and lessen repetitive tasks like answering phone calls and sending out emails.
Who are the potential users?

SingaporePoly 1st: Prospective students — local from secondary schools or ITE, international students from all over the world or working adults who are interested in furthering their education

2nd: Current students and parents from both prospective and current students

3rd: Anyone else such as non- SP teachers who are interested in bringing their secondary school students to tour around SP, job seekers, and media team.

These personas were provided with the brief:

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Analysing the current SP site (As of Dec 2017)

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  • Different sites are interlinked within SP site— Eg. Different academic schools lead to a different site and new layout, other sections such as Further education and Events/Activities has another different site with an entirely different design.
  • There are broken links, unnecessary duplicates of information and misleading content across the site.
  • I’ve tried testing the possible actions for the three personas, some of the information is not available, or they are unclear even when found.
Interviewing real users

Viewing the site in the perception of the three personas’ eyes alone is not sufficient to validate my above’s statements. I’ve talked to the actual users who have been through the process of using the site. I want to understand more about their pain points when they explore the site for their respective needs.


Fresh graduate, Khloe: “When I was studying in SP in the past 3 years, I only visited the site for the student portal.”

International student, Ji Hui: “Back then when I was still in my hometown, I was exploring which polytechnic to study in by surfing their sites. I had a hard time finding out the admission procedure. I could not estimate the amount of time required for the entrance test, visa application, etc. before the next intake. The information provided on the site is limited, and I only get to know that we could find an agent to help us with all procedures through a friend. Moving to an unknown place alone without any assistance made me feel helpless and lonely.”

Working professional and SP Alumni, Tiffany: “I did not visit the SP site as an SP Alumni after graduating for eight years. But I went back to the site recently to research on the available courses I can take to enhance my skill. I had confusion among different kinds of courses: WSQ Courses, short courses, workplace-oriented programmes etc. and I am still unsure about the differences.”

After listening to the actual users, I felt that I prioritize the international students like Ji Hui more than current student and working professionals for this demo. They must be feeling helpless and confused about what to do next as compared to the other two personas.

Hence, I’ve selected Mark, the prospective international student as my persona to work on in the prototype.

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Competitor evaluation

I researched the direct competitors — other polytechnics in Singapore with the four possible tasks for a prospective International student. It turned out that many of them have a similar flow. The content is arranged for the general public.

When I tried to put myself in Mark’s shoes, I faced some difficulties in finding the content after searching for 30 seconds, and I still could not find it. Even if I do, they are still unclear if it applies to me.

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Current SP's website content audit

To understand the content better, a content audit was conducted.

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Information architecture (IA)

After analyzing and researched on other educational sites, I restructured the information architecture by streamlining the content by profile and launched an A/B test with both existing navigation menu and the proposed navigation menu.

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A/B testing with Card sorting

Card sorting is a method used to help design or evaluate the information architecture of a site. In a card sorting session, participants organize topics into categories that make sense to them, and they may also help you label these groups.

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Test A (Generalized) is an open sort with particular items. The tester has to categorize the items into groups they think it fits the best and name the group on their own.

Whereas Test B (By Profiles) is my hypothesis. Therefore I precategorized the groups, so the tester just needs to drag in the item that they think that best suit the categories.

I spent a few days testing with a group of people, but I personally find this method is too time-consuming and taxing for the users. Thus, the result might not be accurate as the users might arrange the content with obligation, and not thinking thoroughly and willingly.

Redoing A/B testing with Tree test

This time round, I restarted the test with the tree test method and sent them to find the content in the perspective from various profiles - prospective students and current students.

Tree testing is a way of evaluating a proposed site structure by asking users to find items based on the organisation and terminology of the site.

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And these are the results for each question:
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Overall results

The overall result shows that my hypothesis has helped the users to reduce the time used and increased the successful

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Proposed solution: Home page (Wireframe)

My solution is to remove anything that is irrelevant to the ‘chosen’ user to avoid any confusion and wasting time to search among non-related content.



Overall vibe

The tone of voice of the site has been set to more personalized and casual tone. To make the website look youthful and hyper, a introductory video of Singapore Polytechnic is playing in the background.


Shared content

The global navigation menu is the general information that is shared across all profiles:


View by profile

Define your profile to see the content you that is catered for you.



Profile's landing page



Landing page's content

Each profile shows different information depending on their main objective on their landing page. E.g. Current students will see the latest announcements of the school etc.

As mentioned in my research phase, I am featuring international prospective student - the most helpless persona out of the 3 given profiles (Current student and working adult) in this project. Hence for this demo, the international prospective student will land on the page that features all courses.



International prospective student's main objective

Each profile shows different information depending on their main objective on their landing page. E.g. Current students will see the latest announcements of the school etc.

For this case: International prospective student will land on the page that features all courses that they could streamline among schools and different courses.



Other useful information

Other information that might be useful to international prospective student are easily accessible in the sub-navigation menu. E.g. how to apply, what kind of financial aids are they eligible to, giving them a rough idea what kind of things to expect when living in Singapore etc.



Comparing courses

Prospective International Student - Mark is currently in a dilemma on which major to take.



‘I have no idea what I like yet’ button leads to a quiz to find out what the prospective student may be interested in and can be taken into consideration.

It might be tough to choose among various courses. ‘I have more than one course in my mind’ button is a feature whereby they could streamline to do a comparison between 2 courses.



Comparing courses

Brief information of the two selected courses will be placed side by side for comparison.

Such as the no. of intake per cohort, no. of students per class, what they will learn in the three years, what is special about the course and future opportunities.



Education Agent

Other than which course to study, international prospective students have more things to consider. Living in a foreign country is not easy.

I added a new feature to provide the contact of reliable educational agencies that could assist the international students with all the necessary procedures including VISA. They may enter their country to find relevant agents.



Finding your community

It must be lonely and lost after moving to a foreign country alone. With the consent of the past SP alumni or current students, they could connect with the fellow compatriots to make them feel secured with companions and tips etc.