On 31st October York launched its applicant portal, You@York. The portal is for post-offer undergraduate applicants and is aimed at persuading them to accept their offer of a place.This is a large and complex project with involvement from staff across the University: Admissions, Student Recruitment, the Student Systems Development Team, the Web team, the Planning Office, IT Services, the E-learning Development Team, Student Support Services and others.
Applicants are sent a username and password along with their offer letter. When an applicant logs in, it recognises who they are and displays some information that is personalised. The navigation bar contains SSO links to sections in e:Vision where they can manage their personal details, book a visit and apply for a Tier 4 Visa certificate. The look and feel is the same in e:Vision and the website, so the user experience isn't interrupted either by a logon screen or by different interfaces.
The applicant name is pulled in using ColdFusion, while departmental content is pulled in from a custom database. The Careers section also presents some information related to the applicant's department - a graduate profile, destinations link and a careers adviser name and contact details - which is pulled in from a Careers database.Because the VLE doesn't work with Shibboleth yet, and we didn't want to make applicants log on a second time, it wasn't possible to provide applicant-only content in the VLE for launch. So the three modules in the VLE (Money matters, and introduction to the Colleges and an introduction to Academic integrity) are all open-access, but only linked through You@York.
The next phase of the project involves researching what applicants need from their department. This will inform the development of departmental VLE modules for applicants. Alongside this we will be reviewing postgraduate transition sites to see what is the best way of providing this information for postgraduate applicants, and launching a postgraduate version of You@York in October 2012.
- More about You@York for applicants
- More information for staff about You@York and the applicant portal project