This summer, CSUN students, faculty and staff will see a big change in the campus web portal known as “myNorthridge Portal” that they use to access everything from email to class and financial aid information. The new portal will launch in July, in the first part of a three-phase rollout. This is its first redesign since 2006.
“What faculty, staff and students have been used to these many years, is going to look drastically different,” said Ranjit Philip, interim vice president for information technology. The current portal that includes a dense listing of different links will make way for a more streamlined presentation.
“We know there’s a huge push for at-a-glance information,” said Kyle Shaver, director of enterprise application development for IT. The department has conducted focus groups with faculty members, staff and students to determine what they want from the portal, Shaver said. “There were a lot of requests for personalization and customization,” he said. Philip and Shaver said the goal is to create a web portal that is much more intuitive for users. Popular features like the student checklist will be enhanced in the new portal as well.
Once the new portal is live, feedback, particularly early on, will be crucial for designers to fine-tune the appearance and accessibility of information. This month, Matadors received an emailed survey, asking for input on how to organize content in the new portal. That survey is available until April 29. There are separate surveys for students and for employees.
Once the new portal launches this summer, users will see a landing page with directions and brief tutorials to help them find the functions they need. Users will automatically have access to the new portal. No new logins or training is required. An online form will be available to report any difficulties, “so we have real-time understanding of the needs of our campus community and we can prioritize that,” Philip said.
The summer release is the first phase of the project. Phases two and three will focus on refinements based on feedback, and incorporating additional functions.
The creation of the new portal is a joint effort by CSUN’s IT department, Carnegie mStoner web design and Modo Labs, the Massachusetts-based digital app building company. The new portal is part of a campus-wide web presence relaunch, which also will include a new, revamped CSUN.edu website, which will be introduced this summer as well.