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Fresh, visually appealing, user-friendly: today (3 December 2018) Leipzig University launched its new website, which has been optimised for mobile devices. The website was designed with simple navigation in mind, with clearly arranged pages providing up-to-date information on the wide-ranging activities of one of the oldest universities in Europe.

Susanne Schwarz, Nadja Enke, Jun.-Prof. Dr Cornelia Wolf, Dr Madlen Mammen. Photo: Christian Hüller

“Our new calling card is online. This will strengthen the Leipzig University brand and is a continuation of what we started last year with the introduction of our new corporate design,” commented Rector Professor Beate Schücking. “We are taking a big step forwards in terms of appearance, technology and content and are offering our online visitors a good introduction to our exciting range in the areas of research, teaching and knowledge transfer.” Rector Schücking added that a great many people came together to make this possible. “I think they can be proud of what they have achieved and will be motivated for the journey ahead.”

Around 260 responsive web pages form part of the University’s central website published today. All of these pages will also gradually be made available in English. This is already the case for the information for prospective students in the “International” section. The old website, which the University had established to mark its 600th anniversary in 2009, presented the same content on approximately 1000 pages. These have all been revised and significantly streamlined for the relaunch. The home page offers direct access to individual institutions and to information for specific target groups. Summary pages allow quick access to relevant information. The navigation paths for users are shorter than before, and a news portal delivers current content. In addition, the University aims to have its new website tested for accessibility and added to the so-called “90plus listing”, which recognises the very best barrier-free digital services.

“We took on a lot and today we have achieved an important goal,” explained Dr Madlen Mammen, Head of the Department of University Communications. “But we are by no means finished, because so far only the central web pages have been overhauled. In the next few months, many web pages of our faculties and institutions will gradually go online with a fresh look and improved usability. We will also continue to work every day to create comprehensible content which is delivered in a modern way, especially for prospective and current students, who are our largest target group. We will be making even more use of interactive and multimedia formats.” In addition, a modular system will be introduced to make new features available to all of the University’s communicators, as well as centralised data sources. 

The relaunch project began in late 2015 with a comprehensive online survey led by Cornelia Wolf, Junior Professor of Online Communication. The subsequent stages included a requirements analysis, qualitative interviews, and workshops with focus groups. In a nutshell, users wanted an intuitive website that would present important and up-to-date content in such a way that it is easy to find and understand, and in a mobile-optimised, visually appealing design.

All work on the new website has been coordinated by the Department of University Communications under the leadership of Susanne Schwarz. The project is managed by the University’s Head of Administration and Finance, Professor Birgit Dräger, as well as Vice-Rector for Education and International Affairs Professor Thomas Hofsäss. Important partners now and in the past have been the Berlin agency Aperto, which is responsible for the design, and the University Computer Centre as well as Chemnitz-based DMK E-Business, a technology service provider which has overseen the technical implementation.

More information about the relaunch: www.uni-leipzig.de/universitaet/service/medien-und-kommunikation/informationen-zum-internet-relaunch/

Carsten Heckmann

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