Library Website Revamped
Okay, its obvious from the home-page that the Wingate University Web-site underwent a major revision over the summer. One might wonder that with all the library staff has to do between the spring and fall semesters, why they would go to the trouble; especially since the entire University site was overhauled just last year. The major focus for this revision was to make the librarysite more accessible and to allow users to find the pages they are looking for in a faster and more intuitive fashion.
There were a number of design considerations in this revision. First, one should note that the home-page contains many more links than the old and the links are grouped together. Think of the home page as an index to the rest of the site. This arrangement (inspired by sites such as Yahoo!) puts more of what patrons are looking for front and center without one having to guess and tunnel through the entire site. This pattern is repeated in areas within the site that have a large number of pages.
Another thing to notice are the three links at the upper right-hand corner of the page–Wingate University Homepage, Site Map, and Comments. If the home page is an index, the site map is the table of contents. Another feature of this site is its clean layout. There are relatively few graphics featured and those that are there tend to be small and are found throughout the site or at least through any given section. The rationale here was to load the pages as quickly as possible. This allows users to do more work online rather than waiting for their pages load.
Finally, the web-site does have a few added features. The news section is one such addition. This section will include library announcements of all sorts plus the weekly Library News of the Web reports. These announcements will also be archived for future reference. Other new services include a new section for the Friends of the Library and an “Ask a Librarian” form. This form is an experiment to help those students who are more comfortable asking for help online rather than coming to the reference desk.