Sessions at University of Illinois Web Conference on Friday 7th April

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  • Building a Global Teaching Studio

    by John Tubbs

    This year, the College of Business debuted its online MBA degree, the "iMBA." This program is revolutionary in that it partners with Coursera's MOOC platform to for an asynchronous environment that offers courses free to world. Students accepted to the program extend the Coursera content and join a more synchronous and engaged experience with the instructors and fellow students.

    Key to this engagement is the connection of program participants through video conferencing. The iMBA program has selected ZOOM for a state of the art video teaching presence. Three studios have recently been built for creating and broadcasting the program's media. Consideration of branding and identity is stressed at all touch points. Working within the constraints of multiple platforms, the College has implemented design elements that accomplish that goal. This presentation will detail the development of the design and infrastructure that delivers this disruptive force in the MBA learning space.

    At 9:45am to 10:45am, Friday 7th April

  • Managing Cycles of Content

    by John Gallagher

    Social media managers need to reuse and recycle content in order to reach audiences missed due to information overload. The presentation is directed at three audiences: content producers, website managers, and operators with specific advice for each group in order for companies and organizations to become more successful in online ventures. In this presentation, I layout the strategies that successful online writers employ to reach overlooked or missed audiences. These strategies include: strategic use of comment functions, rewriting content for search engines, and revising articles based on venue. These strategies are based on a 32-person study of internet writers who actively consider their participatory audiences.

    At 9:45am to 10:45am, Friday 7th April

  • This Is Why We Must Have Nice Things: Content, UX, and People With Disabilities

    by Angela Hooker

    You're fabulous. Why? Because you want to write digital content that motivates, engages, teaches, and benefits your users. But do you know how people who have cognitive impairments or low-language proficiency respond to average, everyday content?

    Join Angela for a revealing session as she shares the results of usability testing with people who have cognitive disabilities or low-language proficiency. You'll learn how to use plain language and accessibility principles to create an inclusive and engaging experience. Plus, she'll share tips for testing content with people with disabilities.

    In this session, you'll learn and see: examples of how people with cognitive impairments or low-language proficiency might perceive your content; resources for creating accessible content while being mindful of all people who might read, access, or interact with your content; and tips for testing your content with your intended audience, including people with disabilities.

    At 9:45am to 10:45am, Friday 7th April

  • Why Nobody Fills Out My Forms

    by Andrew Malek

    Has your web form conversion rate hit a wall? Are users not receiving confirmation emails, getting pestered with password or data format warnings *after* they finish entering their information, or bailing after being asked the same questions multiple ways? Find out why not enough people are filling out your web forms, and learn suggestions of A/B tests you can try to help encourage more people to interact.

    At 9:45am to 10:45am, Friday 7th April

  • Diversity & Inclusion: Why You Want It and How to Get It

    by Lori Gold Patterson

    In a recent survey of millennials, 86% of female and 74% of male millennials consider employers' policies on diversity, equality and inclusion when deciding which organization to work for. And for years studies have shown that diverse views make for better decisions, and thus drive a high-performance culture.

    But how do we achieve diversity in our technical and creative organizations when we often have few opportunities to hire and we're looking for specialists who are hard to come by? And how do we embrace our underrepresented employees so they stay and become part of the DNA of our organizations?

    In this session, Lori presents stories that will illuminate specific changes you can make to help achieve your diversity and inclusion goals.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Friday 7th April

  • I've Got This Stack of Papers: The Case for Ethnographic User Experience Practices

    by Matthew Del Fiacco and Kevin Beck

    As the definition of digital is rapidly changing to encompass a network of activity and connectivity, many businesses are looking for new ways to integrate into the activities of everyday life. Many solutions are designed from behind the screen, out of context of the communities the technology is meant to serve and without input from target users.

    Through the lens of field work with financial representatives regarding a customer relationship management system, our hope is to demonstrate how radial concepts surrounding the prototype of ethnography shape the ways in which teams work with users, and how ethnographic work defines the role of user advocate.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Friday 7th April

  • Progressive Web Applications

    by Wes Cravens

    Put your browser-based content or application on mobile users' home screen without needing a mobile app.

    A revolution is coming in how we put our apps onto our users' mobile devices. Imagine if there was no need for an app store. Just a simple link on your existing website or web app that would allow the mobile user to install a locally independent web application right there on their phone just like a native app. With almost 100% access to native OS features such as notifications, user location, device orientation and "click-to-call." All while leveraging the browser platform that we're already so familiar with.

    The shift that took us away from desktop apps to web apps is happening again on the phone. Develop your content or service application and get it onto users' home screen without any native code necessary.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Friday 7th April

  • Why Search Sucks (and Understanding What It Takes to Fix It)

    by Virgil Carroll

    In all the projects, Virgil has completed in his 18+ years of web, search ALWAYS seems to be an afterthought. Organizations not only fail to understand its importance, but also the effort and planning it takes to create awesome and relevant search results for your visitors. In this session, we will delve into the dark side of cleaning up your search results, practicing some strong planning and query magic to help to pull out better results and happier visitors! This talk will help walk you through the opportunities of solid search strategy, reveal many of the challenges you will face both technologically and content-wise, and provide some quick tips you could implement tomorrow to improve your results significantly.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Friday 7th April

  • Beginner Reactive Programming with RxJS

    by Cory Rylan

    Async programming is not easy, but there is one great paradigm called Reactive Programming that can help. Using Observables, a new construct coming to JavaScript, we will learn how to handle all forms of async data. From user input to AJAX calls, we will compose data streams using the Reactive Extensions (Rx) library and briefly look at how new frameworks like Angular 2 are taking Observable streams to heart.

    At 1:15pm to 2:15pm, Friday 7th April

  • Connect, Cultivate, Hook

    by Melissa Archuleta and Chris Coughlan

    Building a digital content strategy helps organizations become effective and consistent storytellers. Capturing users' attention through habit-forming user experience strategies keeps audiences hooked. In this presentation, you'll learn how to engage your audience with the right messaging and identify UX techniques to keep them invested in your digital properties.

    At 1:15pm to 2:15pm, Friday 7th April

  • Emotional Intelligence in Design

    by Christina Aldan and Manny Patrick

    Recent discoveries in neuroplasticity of the brain give marketers more insight into the motivations of consumers and how Emotional Intelligence (EQ) influences our decisions. Neuroplasticity of the brain gives us new opportunities to create an engaging brand that connects with people on a deeper level. We must see the world from other perspectives and understand the key feelings supporting consumers' choices. Brand building means engaging users from the point of their worldview. In this talk, learn how Anticipatory Design considers EQ into the design of websites and digital advertising.

    At 1:15pm to 2:15pm, Friday 7th April

  • It's All About the Process: A Step-by-Step Plan for Successful Sites and Satisfied Clients

    by Brian Walk, Holly Nicholson and Donnie Forti

    How can a small team support hundreds of university websites in a time when departments are being asked to do more with less? After a website theme upgrade, Northern Illinois University’s Web Team found itself facing the conversion of over 350 websites riddled with inaccurate and outdated information, redundancy, and confusing language and navigation. The team went on a process improvement journey to streamline practices, refocus its mission, and make the case for growth. As a result, the Web Team has been more productive and collaborative, and the quality of NIU’s websites is increasing. Whether you're a designer, developer or do a little of everything, this presentation will provide strategies to improve your workflow by streamlining your process.

    At 1:15pm to 2:15pm, Friday 7th April