Category Archive for: ‘Discovery’

Featured Content Themes

During the discovery and strategy phases of the redesign project we identified a set of overarching content themes. Each of the top-level themes may be considered as a means to focus content throughout the site. The subpoints beneath each are simply examples of the types of articles/stories that can be included within each, and is not meant to be all-inclusive or to imply that these examples would not also fit within another category.

All themes include multiple types of content (news, events, spotlights), while focusing on a variety of people (primarily students, but also focusing on faculty, staff, alumni, coaches).

Tradition and Identity

  • Faith & Religion
  • Honor code
  • Facilities
  • Leadership


  • The Davidson Trust
  • First-generation students
  • Academics
  • Diversity
  • Study Abroad & Global Classroom

  • Student successes
  • Awards
  • Alumni accomplishments

Student Life

  • Facilities
  • Activities
  • Clubs / organizations

  • Division I athletics
  • Facilities

Discovery Outcomes

BarkleyREI was on campus for multiple days of discovery and research February 28-29 and March 27-28. During the February discovery sessions, BarkleyREI met with multiple individuals and groups from across campus, including College Relations, Admission and Financial Aid, Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, the President, College Communications, Information Technology, Athletics, Center for Civic Engagement, Office of the Chaplain, the library, and a current student group.

All faculty and staff were invited to attend any of the multiple open-format discovery sessions moderated by BarkleyREI on March 27-28, which were held in the 900 Room and Sprinkle Room.

Common Discovery Themes

Many topics were discussed during discovery. The following themes consistently came up during BarkleyREI’s time on campus.

Improve Organization and Search
The most obvious issue currently experienced with the site (and many other higher education sites) is organization and the overall architecture of the site. Students and departments have expressed this and the desire to have better navigation and content.

  • There is difficulty finding information
  • Current pages are text-heavy and difficult to scan
  • Search results for common terms are of poor quality
  • There is confusion surrounding where certain types of information should live
  • Focus the navigation on prospective students while continuing to keep other audiences top of mind

Improve Design and Identity
Another common theme is that the current design is outdated. While the interim homepage has been well-received, the site in general does not effectively illustrate the Davidson experience, nor does it meets the needs of the user from an information perspective. Likewise, the lack of CMS flexibility has lead to the creation of various WordPress and similar standalone sites that do not closely follow the brand/style established by Davidson.

  • Redesign the site to communicate the essence of the Davidson Experience
  • Leverage design and multimedia to engage the audience
  • Use design to improve the readability, navigation, and usage across devices

Increase Flexibility
In order to prevent the fragmentation of the site, ensure the new implementation of Ingeniux has the flexibility to meet the needs of the larger audiences. The lack of customization forced users to create their own “sister-sites” in the current setup. Creating an implementation that is easier to use with built-in accommodations for multimedia and landing page needs along with training and workflow support.

  • Develop templates with more advanced features that are easy to use
  • Ensure training and documentation is available long-term
  • Establish a workflow and support plan to ensure maintenance of the site stays consistent and high quality

Inside Davidson
There is confusion around what Inside Davidson is and should be used for. It is difficult to navigate, scan, and use for the average visitor, and it is not widely, nor consistently, adopted across the college. There are concerns about the design, organization, and redundancy (internally and in reference to the public site).

  • Define the “division of responsibilities” between the public site and Inside Davidson
  • Consider a revised design that makes Inside Davidson easier to use
  • Improve the information architecture to make Inside Davidson more valuable as a tool
  • Consider adding ability to increase the personalization of Inside Davidson.

Web Redesign Input Sessions Scheduled for March 27-28

Staff from BarkleyREI, the college’s Web redesign partner, will be on campus March 27-28 to host two days of Web redesign input sessions (aka listening sessions). BarkleyREI will lead each listening session and moderate the discussion.

Web Redesign Listening Sessions

Tuesday, March 27

  • 11 a.m.-12 p.m. (Common Hour) – Faculty Session – Location: 900 Room
  • 2-3 p.m. – Faculty and Staff Session – Location: 900 Room
  • 5-6 p.m. – Student Session – Location: Sprinkle Room

 Wednesday, March 28

  • 9-10 a.m. – Faculty and Staff Session – Location: 900 Room
  • 11 a.m.-12 p.m. – Faculty, Staff, and Student Session – Location: Sprinkle Room

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Doug Minor, director of digital communications, at 894-2539 or

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