The 2015 redesign represents a substantial change in both appearance and approach for the university's main website.
It accomplishes more by doing less.
The last thing we want is to create additional obstacles between our users and the information they are looking for — which, in most cases, already exists in more helpful detail on one of the university's many subsites. Starting with the needs of our audience and data collected from across the university, we carefully vetted content, reducing copy to that which our users find most useful and interesting, and linking to the rest. What resulted is a website that is more streamlined and focused, helping provide a simpler path to navigating a university that, when you consider the countless number of available resources and opportunities, can be quite complex.
It is designed for access and inclusion.
This site will be used on an array of devices, in a wide range of environments and for a variety of practical purposes, serving a diverse community of users with very different needs. While our desire for updated, modern aesthetics was on its own an important aspect that shaped the direction of our design, ensuring that we met the highest standards for usability was continually the top factor driving design decisions. From the color palette and menu structure to the way each responsive page element rearranges and adjusts based on the size of your browser, this design aims to achieve a harmonious balance between beauty and function for all users.
It is just the first step.
The UT Austin website is intended to appeal primarily to potential newcomers to the Forty Acres — prospective students, faculty, staff or donors. But its redesign marks a major step forward in the efforts to improve the digital experience for the entirety of the UT Austin community. As we develop additional digital solutions, focused more fully on the needs of UT Austin's many other online audiences, we intend for this site's successes and failures to inform our work and the work of digital professionals throughout the university.
We welcome your comments and feedback.