The current Student Web Service website (ROSI-SWS) was implemented in 2002 and remains in use today. The site is the main access point for online services such as registration, course timetable and fee assessment for students. The existing functionality presents particular challenges for students to complete basic tasks like adding and dropping courses, understanding registration and financial statuses; and understanding their personal timetables. Additionally, the site is significantly constrained in terms of mobile and accessible compatibility.
One of the most frequent requests we hear from students is the desire for a cohesive and coordinated online student experience at U of T. The current suite of services is like an archipelago of islands, each with their own specific characteristics. These islands are treacherous to navigate and traverse. There are a myriad of tools, systems and services available to students with little coordination between them.
THE APPROACH - USER CENTERED DESIGN
For the first time at the University of Toronto, our team has instilled the user centered approach where our end users - students at the University of Toronto are involved with major aspects of the project.
ACORN is geared towards empowering students to make informed decisions about their short-term and long-term futures across their student lives. Second, it will provide an enhanced user experience that will inform students on what they need to do, when they need to do it, and allow them to choose how they want to do it. Think – paying bills, planning academics, student life involvement and registering for courses… on mobile, laptops and platforms utilizing assistive technology.
Read more about the project here.