by Doug Tschopp
This popular HighEdWeb workshop is a great way to start off the conference! Using some of the cornerstone topics in communications and public relations, this workshop examines the development of good Web content. The second half of the workshop looks at research techniques available for developing and assessing websites.
by Jeffrey Pohorski
Storytelling should serve as the framework for marketing and communications. In this workshop, you'll learn how great video storytelling includes a beginning, middle and end; strong images; clean sound; conflict; emotion and strong characters that tie into your university messaging and goals. You'll learn how to choose the right stories that will build credibility within your institution; discuss various documentary and promotional video shooting and editing styles; learn what kinds of video equipment and software fit within your budget and communication needs; get hands-on experience with video equipment and editing software; learn how to improve your videography, sound, lighting and interviewing techniques by watching specific examples; and outline how your videos interact with social media and your institutional websites. You can also submit your own videos prior to the start of the workshop to receive onsite critique and problem solving.
by Caitlin vonHedemann
In the ever-changing world of marketing and communications, it is increasingly important to be agile in testing new media, setting key performance indicators, and evaluating your results. We will explain why this is so important and how you can ensure that your inbound strategy takes advantage of the flexibility that agile marketing techniques can afford your institution. We will start and end this workshop with an interactive discussion of inbound marketing strategies, and provide instructive presentations on the use of individual components of inbound marketing, including goal setting and measurement; content ideation and creation techniques; search engine optimization; the use of social media and how to incorporate analytics into your strategy. Beginners can expect to leave the workshop with a solid understanding of how these pieces fit together and how universities can leverage them to improve student application rates, enrollment rates, alumni engagement, student communications and donor conversions.
by Paul Cook
The Ruby on Rails framework can increase your productivity and happiness. It's right there on the official Rails website so it has to be true, right? In the Office of Geriatrics and Gerontology at The Ohio State University, we have leveraged the principles of high productivity and programmer happiness that Ruby on Rails promises to deliver quality distance education websites. The goal of this workshop is to expose you to the key concepts of the Ruby programming language and the Rails framework that make this possible. This workshop will be split into four parts: 1. Setup a Ruby on Rails Development Environment 2. Basics of the Ruby language constructs 3. RubyGems: reusable Ruby building blocks 4. Basics of Ruby on Rails framework. We will work towards developing a very basic CMS so that, by the conclusion of this workshop, you'll have a solid understanding of Ruby on Rails.
Is WordPress the right CMS for your department, or even your whole institution? How do you sell your colleagues on WordPress? What kinds of sites can you build with WordPress? We will discuss how WordPress's theme system is uniquely suited for campus-wide branding initiatives, and how you can create a single theme that allows your users to customize their own sites to the extent you allow. We'll do a quick walkthrough of installation process and the administration features, including some issues specific to campus networks. We'll talk about how to navigate the vast plug-in ecosystem, and how non-developers can evaluate plugins and themes.
by C. Daniel Chase
DevOps helps developers and system administrators of productions systems work together in an easier, more fluid and agile style. This presentation will follow the lifecycle of software development, touching on development tools, automated testing, continuous integration (think Jenkins/Hudson) and deployment. Then add on feedback, rinse and repeat: a continuous improvement process for your website!
by Martha Gabriel
Although the impact of digital communications in education started in the 20th century, the scenario has become much more complex since the spread of the social networks websites and mobile technologies in society and university. While students have quickly and naturally embraced the new socio-technological environment, education institutions have struggled to keep up with them -- we have 2.0 Students and need to become 2.0 Universities (including professors and staff). This presentation will discuss the major transformations in student learning and interaction, and explore the challenges and opportunities this brings to educational institutions.
by Jonathan Davis
User-centered design can be the catch 22 for higher education. How can you show a result without an investment? How can you get investment without proven results? Before we receive additional resources from administrators, we have to prove concepts on the cheap first. At Illinois State University our official Usability Department consists of 1/2 of a person but, unofficially, we've tapped faculty members, students and other staff to expand our capabilities and form mutually beneficial relationships at little to no cost. In this session, we'll discuss how to do without the resources you won’t get easily (money) by utilizing those that are unique to a University: extra-credit hungry students, faculty looking for learning experiences and graduate assistants looking for hands-on research work. With one test at a time, you can win over more supporters, gain more resources and, finally, build something that resembles a usability program.
by Karen Capitano
How should you optimize your website for mobile and more? This workshop will help you to understand what it takes to think beyond the desktop and ensure you are responding to your student's needs. Building the right apps for mobile is essential for students to access the right services. What are the right apps and how often should they change? This workshop shows examples and discusses how to create a 'mobile in the middle' strategy.
by Brett Pollak
At this point, most universities have established some level of mobile presence, whether it's an app or a web-based mobile site.
This is great if people want to look up a contact in the mobile directory, the location of a building, or places to eat on campus, but what about prospective students looking for admissions related information on their mobile device, and what about the thousands of webpages and web applications most campuses currently maintain? How can we make sure those are optimized for all resolutions including phones and tablets of all sizes?
This session will cover some of benefits and "gotchas" of responsive design, a strategy to deploy responsive design as a “self service” for web developers using templates, ideas for how your mobile site (m.university.edu) can co-exist with your responsive web pages and projections about what's next for responsive design.
by Donna Talarico and Donna Talarico
Sharing is nice. We’ve known that since kindergarten, right? Yet why are so many things still siloed in higher ed?
Generating fresh content and sharing accurate, up-to-date information is pivotal to a college website’s success, and sharing said content through social media and other marketing channels is equally important.
In this session, Donna will show you how to share content and coordinate story ideas and information across campus—and give tips on motivating others to get in the habit of sharing.
Also, she will show you examples of how she and her colleagues at Elizabethtown College use features from within their CMS to create and manage sharable content—from a single figure like tuition to page content and forms—which makes everyone’s lives easier.
by Nina Brakel-Schutt and Lee Stadler
An organization can become unstable if its brand story isn't communicated clearly and consistently. Digital asset management (DAM) is a strategy that can be used to capture and deliver the most important elements of a University story – consistently – through its website. Our presentation will use a demo of one University's DAM system to show how it has enhanced their brand story and website and, ultimately, saved them time and resources.
by Doug Gapinski and Dave Olsen
We’re entering a new era where an increasing number of devices with wildly divergent features--including phones, tablets, game consoles, and TVs--are connected to the Internet.
As the way people access the Internet changes, there is an urgent need to rethink how we use the web to communicate. This doesn't mean creating separate solutions for each device but rather preparing our existing content to meet this increasingly unpredictable future.
Dave Olsen and Doug Gapinski will share and examine examples that show how responsive design will help institutions rethink and adjust for the future-friendly web.
by John Mills
Strategy, process, evaluation and a commitment to risk-taking allow us to stay innovative, relevant and evolve our web presence gradually.
As design lead, John Mills will share the highlights from UW-Milwaukee's recent redesign and "get down to brass tacks" with the design, technology and theories holding it all together, including storybook landing pages, writing for the web, practical web analytics, microsites, video, social, mini-apps and more.
Whether we're integrating systems or getting everything out before the house of cards collapses, sooner or later most of us find ourselves converting, migrating, exporting and archiving our content. In this talk, Jason Proctor and Sven Aas will review a series of conversions they've completed, identify some patterns, discuss tools and techniques, and share the lessons learned along the way, so the next time you're spinning up a new application (or just shutting down an old one), you'll find the process a little easier and a little better.
by Lori Packer
Several large, elite universities have entered the online learning world in a big way this year. Stanford's Udacity, MITx, and the Coursera consortium are offering free online versions of traditional undergraduate classes to a virtual classroom of thousands of students around the world. All of this begs many questions, not the least of which is: what will the residential, four-year college experience look like in 10 years?
In this session, Lori Packer will present two case studies based on my experiences as an online student: one in a "traditional" Blackboard-driven graduate program for distance students, and one as a student in a Coursera course.
Together we will try to answer several "big" questions, including: how does technology help or impede the learning process? Is a "classroom" of thousands really a classroom? How does the role of a professor change in this environment? The role of a student? When on-campus students are paying $6,000 to take the same 3-credit class that thousands of students are taking for free, what value is being added for the on-campus student, and does that added value worth the cost? Are these developments in massive online courses exciting? Alarming? Both? And how do Web professionals fit in?
In addition to the freedom that WordPress offers to its users, it also offers a great deal of flexibility to its administrators and managers. One of the greatest features of WordPress is the ability to set up a multisite environment, allowing you to stand up an entirely new website in minutes. WordPress Multisite offers you the option to set up new websites using subdomains or subdirectories off of the original installation point and, through various plugins and configuration settings, you can take it even further. During this presentation, Curtis Grymala will briefly explain how a default multisite installation of WordPress works, how to expand that to fit your unique situation, and explore the possibilities of using domain mapping to use unique URLs for individual sites within the multisite installation. For many higher education institutions, though, even multisite is not broad enough to fit the information architecture of our websites. That's where Multi-Network comes into play. At UMW, the university website is built on a WordPress Multi-Network environment, with nearly 30 multisite setups running inside of a single WordPress installation. Grymala will touch on the basics of setting up WordPress to work as a Multi-Network tool, and offer tips to get plugins and themes working more efficiently in this unique environment.
by Lacy Tite and Jeremy Rex
Lacy Tite, Senior Web Developer of Vanderbilt’s University Web Communications, will share how she helps departments and colleges utilize OmniUpdate’s CMS, OU Campus. Through an analysis of departmental needs and abilities, Lacy will explain how she uses OU Campus to make better, customized web development decisions. Come and learn how OU Campus is successfully utilized with WordPress, and what makes OU Campus the choice for more colleges and universities than any other CMS. Join Lacy and Jeremy Rex from OmniUpdate for this useful demonstration!
by Emily Looney
The online content management approach of iterative redesign is earning its keep at Emory University. Externally, we find this approach allows us to keep pace with demographic expectations and online trends while also increasing the website's effectiveness as a marketing tool. Internally, it allows us to innovate within the university's existing online framework while also respecting the institutional tolerance for change. This presentation outlines the steps we take, including data analysis and content review, and demonstrates the process from start to finish to start again.
by Jason Fish
As users download more apps on their phones and play games for hours on Facebook, their expectations no longer allow higher education to slowly scale up our infrastructure and grow. In this presentation, we will explore how cloud computing can be used as the key element in making your applications available to a broader audience and discuss practical techniques for developing your applications for mass consumption, preparing for spikes and establishing user engagement metrics. This session is intended for developers, managers, and marketers who want to take their sites and apps and make them more accessible, available and reliable.
How do you make sense of and promote faculty research if you have no background in their subject area, let alone an advanced degree? How can you work with difficult faculty personalities, from the complete technophobe to the extreme early adopter? This session will draw from Amanda Costello’s experience as a web designer and content strategist at the University of Minnesota, one of the country’s largest research institutions. Learn how to channel your faculty’s expertise into great web content, and build their trust in your knowledge and skills. Bring your questions, triumphs and war stories!
by John-Paul Takats
The traditional college virtual tour often revolves around a clickable map featuring an overhead view of campus -- far different from walking around campuswith a student ambassador tour guide. The RIT Undergraduate Admissions office set out to create an immersive and interactive tour-like experience that mimics aspects of the real-world tour while also embracing geographically-based media available on the internet, including Google Street View, student-recorded tour information, social media widgets, photos and videos. While RIT’s tour relies heavily on Street View, the principles explored here can be applied to different types of media. The presentation will focus on the model used to collaboratively develop the tour, tips for universities who wish to do the same, an overview of the technologies that power it, how it was received by student, and what the future may be like for timeline-movie-based content in a web browser. Check out the tour in beta at http://www.rit.edu/emcs/admissio... .
by Jeff Abuzzahab
This frank and lively presentation will take you through the brief history of a college’s epic web fail after believing the University’s one size fits all CMS would cure all ills and how, after the crash, the web disaster was turned around by the presenter and his colleagues on the front lines. You will learn about the successful processes put in place that have delivered four years of web bliss; from listening to the people who actually work on the web, to the temporary patches that turned into permanent solutions.Focused on infrastructure, and touching on management and design, this journey covers tossing out the big box CMS software for user-friendly tools like Dreamweaver, WordPress and some home grown apps running across several development and live servers. Core web technologies like XML and CSS frameworks will be demonstrated, the concept of using RSS feeds and XSLT in content management will also be covered, as will how our solution allows information to be shared across sites and lets multiple systems to perform more efficiently than a single software approach.No matter the size of your academic institution, the primary software at your disposal, or where you sit on the org chart, you will take away important lessons on collaboration, working from the ground up, and leveraging web standards to ensure continued creative freedom.
Is your institution taking full advantage of its content? This vendor neutral presentation will explain how universities can ‘set your data free’ by taking full advantage of content in 3rd party systems such as Ellucian, Banner, ActiveCampus, Blackboard, Peoplesoft to build compelling course search facilities, people finders and so much more.
by Kyle James
The rules of the game have changed. Having a website is standard practice but your website is more than a branding piece for your institution. The majority of almost every school’s annual budget comes from tuition so helping increase enrollment has to be the site's top priority. Are you fully leveraging it for a marketing purpose? How is your social media, blogging, mobile efforts and search engine optimization coming together to help you meet these goals? In this presentation, you'll get a blue print for success. We will discuss the importance of your website in the marketing and recruitment funnel, how you can actually get a ROI on marketing and give you formulas and calculators to financially justify future projects.
by Alex Kingman
Taking a project from concept to completion can be tricky. Ideas come from all angles: clients, colleagues and administrators. How can we organize these thoughts into one cohesive vision and, more importantly, communicate that vision with your team? The answer is simple: understand the problem first through prototyping. This presentation will discuss various prototyping frameworks for mobile apps, complex web tools and even mobile games. The techniques covered will range from simple pencil and paper sketches, to seemingly fully functional apps. We'll also take a look at some real-world examples of how CIO-level ideas have gone through the prototyping process.
by Aaron Rester
In his seminal work, "Understanding Media," Marshall McLuhan contended that media are essentially extensions of human senses: print is an extension of the eye, the phonograph and radio of the ear, and so on. McLuhan did not live to see the rise of the web, but he had already predicted that the sense being extended in what he called the "electric age" was that of touch. With the tactile interfaces of the iPhone and similar devices becoming increasingly common, the medium of the web is already becoming something that we touch, as much as we see and hear it. This presentation will examine the tactile potential of the web, and suggest some ways that institutions of higher education might be able to harness that potential.
by Chris Wiegman
As the author of the Better WP Security WordPress plugin, Chris Wiegman has spent a bit of time over the last couple of years securing WordPress and other open source CMS installs and fixing sites for those who did not. That said, making a reasonably secure site with open source software isn’t all that hard if you know what to look for. This session will focus on the practical aspects of setting up a site with security in mind and maintaining it so as to keep the wolves at bay. He's spent the last 6 years focusing on the security of Drupal, WordPress, Joomlaand MediaWiki sites, which has included installation, configuration and response to numerous attacks. Over that time there are a number of vectors he's found that, when implemented from the beginning and with the correct frame of mind, can make an open source website at least as secure, if not more secure, than any other product on the market. This session will cover the basics of why to secure, common vectors used by attackers, mitigation strategies and basic training strategies to help make sure your site is safe from attack. In short, Wiegman will show folks how securing their open source CMS doesn't take a dissertation worth of work.
by Jamie Oberdick
The Daily Buzz is a unique part of the news section of Penn State's Teaching and Learning with Technology (TLT) website. More features than hard news, the Daily Buzz serves two purposes: it places new content on the TLT site on a daily basis, giving people a reason to visit the regularly, and promotes TLT services and other educational technologies at the university. Using a variety of formats, from written word to podcasts to videos, the story of Penn State-style educational technology is told.This presentation will look at some recent examples of Daily Buzz stories; how they are produced; why you shouldn't be afraid to dip your toes into multimedia production; the various technology tools used such as GarageBand, Flip camera, and Google Docs; best ways to sniff out stories; incorporating social media; simple ways to allow people to tell their story themselves; and some surprising ways the content you produce can be used to market your unit, department and/or university/college.
7th–10th October 2012