Lindsay Kolowich opens her review of the best college websites by describing the “average college’s website.” You can almost see it; out of date, stale, with too many words. Confusing navigation made even worse when viewed on a smartphone, or even a tablet.
Beginning with Frause Design’s Webby- nominated University of Maryland Admissions site, right through to Oberlin College’s “stunning” homepage, Kolowich walks us through the different approaches these schools are taking to make an immediate and lasting impression on prospective students, as well as serving as a portal for families, alumni, professors and donors.
In the fourteen sites she reviews, Kolowich touches on web optimization, mobile compatibility, customization along with the use of graphics, high definition images, fonts and the all important calls to action.
Highlights include George Washington University’s use of a virtual reality tour of their campus and the unique navigation designed by White Whale Web services for Middlebury College. There is only one example of a mobile application (Notre Dame) and one comparison to a school’s previous site (University of Michigan), more of which would have been nice. Kolowich does provide all the links you need to check out these exceptional, eye catching and effective sites.
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