Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Portal and Planning

Must be the time for brainstorming, as we had another one at the end of last week on our portal. We've had a staff and student portal in place for many years and we're on the second platform for it, and looking to move to a new one. So, to start the review off we looked at what's good about it, what's bad about it, and what we need it to do that it doesn't do at the moment. Unsuprisingly, the good things were single sign-on, easy access to systems and services in one place, easy access when working off campus, customisable pages, it's personalised, viewing things without having to open the applications, and so on. Bad things - clunky interface, it can be slow, logs you out too easily, single point of failure, difficult to develop for. And things we want that we don't have - more customisation and personalisation, better interface, more targetted information, more widgets. So, we will start the review soon - hopefully to have something in place during next year.

We spent sometime yesterday in the Executive Team discussing the University's latest planning statement. This sets out the Unviersity's plans for the next few years, including the size and shape of the University, the way we see teaching and learning developing, the strategy for research including the recruitment of postgraduates, and our plans for internationalisation and equality and diversity. Key themes running through the document are flexibility and reducing complexity - things that will also be important to us as we develop our plans for this year.

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