The Web Services team is a user- and data-driven team. We decided that a great time to do user testing, with new students, was during freshman week.
What we have done
A survey was produced to test
- Participation in the Open Day,
- the new 360º virtual tour,
- our communications during the admissions process,
- social media,
- the website in general.
Respondents were also asked what type of student they were (UG, PGT, PhD or Exchange) and where they were domiciled (Scotland, EU, England, Wales, Northern Ireland or International). This is to allow data filtering.
How we did it
From Monday 5 September to Monday 12 September 2016, 30 people from External Relations came out to talk to students and ask them to complete the survey. We focused our attention on Bonar Hall, DUSA, Inquiry Center and Library as these areas had a high concentration of new students.
Each student was given an iPad Mini and asked to complete the survey which took 3-5 minutes to complete.
We targeted 500 responses and 575 students completed the survey.
Type of student
|Have you attended one of our Open Days?||Total||%|
360º virtual tour
|Have you used the 360 virtual tour?||Total||%|
|Did you find the 360 virtual tour useful?||Total||%|
|How would you rate the 360 virtual tour?||Total||%|
|Before arriving, what do you think of our communication?||Total||%|
|What do you think of the way we talked to you?||Total||%|
|If you applied to more than one university, how did the amount of communications from us compare?||Total||%|
|Thinking about social media, how many Facebook groups have you been asked to join?||Total||%|
|What is your favorite social media platform?||Total||%|
|I don’t use social media||11||2%|
|What is your preferred method of communication?||Total||%|
|Had you ever heard of the word ‘registration’ before coming to Dundee?||Total||%|
|How did you know where to be today for matriculation?||Total||%|
|Asked a friend||114||20%|
|asked a member of staff||59||10%|
|Email with a link to the website||132||23%|
|Email with all the information||161||28%|
|Overall, how well did our website meet your needs?||Total||%|
|How easy was it to find what you were looking for on our website?||Total||%|
|How visually appealing is our website?||Total||%|
|How easy is it to understand the information on our website?||Total||%|
|How much do you trust the information on our website?||Total||%|
|How likely are you to recommend our website to someone else?||Total||%|
How the results will affect change
If we can bring prospective students to campus, they are more likely to convert into matriculated students. The data from previous Open Days demonstrate this. Only Scottish respondents to the survey were the majority who attended an Open Day. However, 92% of those who used the Virtual Tour found it helpful. Work is underway to adapt the Virtual Tour for virtual reality headsets for use at UCAS events to bring students to Dundee in a fun and interactive way.
Looking at the communication section of the survey, it can be seen that just over 26% of respondents were not completely satisfied with our communications.
Regarding social media, we can see that over 20% of respondents were asked to join 4 or more Facebook groups, but we didn’t ask whether that was good or bad. This additional question will be added to next year’s survey.
43% of respondents overall, rising to 50% of university respondents, have not heard the word ‘matriculation’ before coming to Dundee. This would suggest that using plain English would reduce confusion during freshman week for what registration is essentially.
40% of respondents consulted the website to find out where they enrolled, but 30% asked a friend or staff member. Feedback from students has shown a lack of awareness and confusion regarding the matriculation process. Students often wanted to feel reassured that they were doing the ‘right thing’.
The website section shows that over 80% of respondents are satisfied that the website meets their needs. On the contrary, we must be aware that a third party has difficulty finding what he is looking for. This will inform the work I’m looking at this semester. Using tools like Excellent Treejack Workshop AND Optimal sortingI will look into how to improve the information architecture of the Studio section and the website in general.