Web Redesign

PROJECT PURPOSE

SAIC’s website, SAIC.edu, is the digital gateway to the School and serves one of the most critical tools the School has for recruitment, fundraising, and overall communications. In 2022, the Office of Marketing and Communications began a redevelopment project in order to relaunch a site that is representative of a world-class art and design college while following current best practices for navigation and user experience. Currently, SAIC.edu serves an average of 130,000 monthly users each month and the website is the first experience with the School for many prospective undergraduate, graduate, or continuing studies students.

KEY GOALS
SAIC.edu Must Be SAIC.edu Must Have SAIC.edu Must Do
  • A platform to tell the SAIC brand story
  • An accessible and optimized website
  • A vehicle to recruit prospective students
  • Striking design
  • A new CMS
  • Microsite solutions
  • A new, integrated events system
  • Provide an exceptional user experience
  • Elevate personal relevance
  • Showcase diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Communicate SAIC's mission, brand, and key messages more effectively
PARTNERS

Agency Partner

In spring 2022, the School embarked on an extensive request for proposal (RFP) process, inviting 25 web design agencies to participate. The web governance team, consisting of staff from the offices of Academic Affairs, Admissions, Computer Resources and Information Technologies (CRIT), and Marketing and Communications, reviewed 16 proposals, with six of those agencies invited to provide presentations. The team selected Digital Pulp as the winning partner for the redesign of SAIC.edu. Digital Pulp is a full-service web design agency specializing in higher education and nonprofit websites. Clients include Julliard, Princeton, Miles College, University of Massachusetts, Pace University, Barnard College, Yale, and Make-A-Wish America.

CMS

The website governance team evaluated options for content management systems. After consulting with internal stakeholders, the CRIT team has chosen Drupal as the CMS for the new SAIC.edu.

Stakeholders

Collaboration with staff, faculty, and students across the School community is critical to the success of the project. The project teams consist of nearly 60 staff and faculty who will be consulted throughout the phases of this project. To date, more than 100 faculty, staff, students, and alums have provided their feedback in 20 discovery sessions aimed at gathering insights to help inform the direction of the site.

Redesign Partners Chart in Blue
PROJECT TIMELINE

Fall 2022

  • Discovery + Strategy (Completed)
  • User Experience Design
  • Visual Design
  • Content Planning
  • User Testing

Winter/Spring 2023

  • Visual Design
  • Web Style Guide
  • Content Creation
  • Technical Development
  • User Testing

Launch: June 2023

CONTACT

SAIC.edu Website Governance Team
SAICwebredesign@saic.edu

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago website is undergoing a redesign process to improve site content, design, function, usability, and maintenance.