Not too long ago, students logged on to the Internet and discovered that the university had unveiled a new design for its Web site, http://www.rochester.edu. The new Web site features a sleeker setup, replete with stylish graphics and nice pictures. This new attractive design, however, is accompanied by some negative changes in accessibility and convenience. The content that was previously more directly accessible on the old site has been moved in deeper on one of the poorly designed secondary pages, like important information about academics and college life.For instance, the original Web site featured a link to the “Living” page, a very important section for most students, on the main page, as it included links to student organizations and various student services, among other pages. Now, navigating to that page requires going to a different page and then selecting the correct hard-to-read link out of the list. The same applies to the “Learning” page, which many students use to gain vital information about academics.It is important for students and other visitors to the Web site to be able to efficiently navigate the site as well as appreciate its attractiveness. The previous Web site design was well-constructed, accessible, and attractive. It would be unfortunate if the new Web site continued to be less convenient than its previous version. The setup of the university Web site is especially significant as it is one of the first things prospective students and visitors see when learning more about what UR has to offer. It would be unfortunate if the current issues of accessibility continued to pose an obstacle to the facilities provided by the UR site. Improvement in site graphics must not mean loss of its quality.
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