Weber.edu will shut down between the hours of 7-10 a.m. Sunday morning for the launch of Weber State University’s new redesigned website.
“None of the other systems students use will be affected. Canvas and Chi Tester are separate from the actual weber.edu website,” said Jennifer Philion from University Marketing and Communications who helped lead the new website redesign project.
While the website is down, it will contain links to the tools students and faculty normally utilize through the eWeber portal.
One of the new features of the upgraded website will include mobile device browsing capability.
“Our website, as it is now, is not mobile-friendly, and we have more people who are trying to use the website on a tablet or smart phone and it’s very difficult,” Philion said.
With technology always growing, the university anticipates mobile browsing to grow as well.
“Fifteen percent of our users right now are coming from a mobile device, we know that’s only going up and we wanted to be ready for that,” Philion said.
The new website has been designed to adapt with technology.
“It’s designed in such a way that it will even adapt to future devices not yet released. We accomplished this by using recent web technologies like HTML5 and jQuery, as well as new open-source frameworks like Zurb’s Foundation,” said Peter Waite, web development manager at Weber State University.
With the launch of the new website, there will be new features to help aid in navigation such as a fixed toolbar with the login, an A to Z index, the search feature on every page and extended footer feature reference links, with the most popular social media links.
The new website will also appeal more to prospective students. A bad experience on a website can cause prospective students to write off attending a potential university.
By researching other university websites and how easy their information was obtained, the web development team wanted to ensure the same positive experience.
“We wanted to take what prospective students are looking for and make it really easy to find, try to present how it feels to be a student at Weber State,” Philion said.
The new site will feature new landing pages for academics, admissions and student life that didn’t exist before.
The web development team consists of four developers and a web designer. The process for a new weber.edu website as well as a new portal site (coming soon) took almost a year. A thousand hours of programing and design work, and tens of thousands of lines of code went into making the new website.
The new eWeber portal is scheduled to be available for beta testing shortly after the new website is launched. Students will be able to opt into the beta to help the developers work out the bugs before launching it university wide.
While departments and various organizations have been working to make sure that their own websites would transfer over to the new website with ease, some students were unaware of the new development.
“We’re getting a new website?” asked sophomore Madison Myers. “I think it’s great if it’s going to be more mobile proficient, but the current website on my phone didn’t bother me.”
While the web development team is hoping for a smooth launch, and they are aware things do break during transition.
“The web development team knows they’re on call for the next week or so if anyone identifies something broken in the process,” Philion said.
Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to give feedback on the new website once it’s launched through the feedback channel in the eWeber portal.
To check out what the new website will look like please visit: test.weber.edu