A new website for the LMS

May 11, 2010

Penny Davies: Some things I’d look for in a new site

Filed under: Uncategorized — Alexandre Borovik @ 18:36

I agree that the website needs to be re-done – the current site isn’t easy to navigate or update. Some things I’d look for in a new site are:

  1. It should be logically organised and easy to navigate, and I’d recommend testing out any potential logical structures on members who aren’t experts in the way the LMS is structured (i.e. not just on members of Council or staff) – the site needs to be accessible to everyone, and not just to those who know that most grants are disbursed by the Programme Committee and labelled by scheme number. It must be disabled-accessible – there are presumably standards for this.
  2. Pages should be able to be edited by the people (staff and officers) who are responsible for them. This is necessary (but not sufficient) for pages to be kept up to date. A wiki-based structure is good for this: those who need it can be given write permission for particular pages. The sites www.smstc.ac.uk and www.ems.ac.uk with which I’ve been involved both work this way (the EMS pages are based on a newer model, and there are more levels of permissions possible, but things have probably moved on since). The pages must be easy to edit for non-experts (wikis are good for this). Any associated databases must be easy for staff to edit and maintain.
  3. It might be best to build a new site up from a skeleton as others have suggested – start with what’s essential, but have the possibility to extend to new things. Launch the site when the essential stuff is covered.
  4. There are pages of committee and Council membership now, but I don’t remember seeing any similar lists of staff. This would be useful – as would photos to go along with the names (of staff and cttee members).
  5. I wouldn’t find a blog useful, and I’m dubious as to the worth of duplicating info that is available elsewhere, unless the LMS site is going to become *the* place to look for it. E.g. I wouldn’t make competing with jobs.ac.uk a priority (although a commercial site, it’s pretty cheap and everyone uses it).
  6. Secure electronic voting would be useful.

1 Comment

  1. When the LMS was compiling the case to stop closure of various maths departments it was quite hard to pull all the facts and figures together. So I suggest
    it would be very useful to have easily accessed data on Mathematics in the same way that the IOP site does for Physics. For example numbers of GCSE Maths students, AS, A level over last 5years. Numbers of lecturers, SL, readers and professors and the % women in these posts over last 5 years.
    Number of undergrads, pgt,pgr over last 5 years. Number of Universities with Mathematics departments over last 5 years. etc

    Comment by Amanda Chetwynd — May 12, 2010 @ 08:39

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