As part of the core curriculum, MS in Professional Writing students in the Principles of Information Architecture course, taught by Dr. Steven Goss, learn about information architecture and user experience through the study and practice of techniques used to develop websites and web apps. For their final projects this past spring, students were asked to develop a website prototype based on a mock request for proposal (RFP). In response to the mock RFP, students sought ways to match innovative methods for information presentation with the specific needs of their target audiences– which varied across projects. After submitting their prototypes, the class took on the role of RFP reviewers and voted for the strongest prototypes. The following student website prototypes were ranked the highest in the course (in no order):
Park Slope Loop by Julia Joy
This prototype is a neighborhood blog and guide to Park Slope, Brooklyn. However, the prototype is designed to be adaptable to any neighborhood. The purpose of Park Slope Loop is to inform and engage the community through a comprehensive directory of locales and events, as well as through blog articles featuring neighborhood observations, insider knowledge, and local humor. The site also invites users to interact and post free classifieds ads. While stock photos and placeholder text are presently used throughout, the eventual goal of this project is to generate original written and visual content.
Copper Square Community Site by Lisa Roth
The purpose of the Copper Square Community Site is to facilitate communication between the residents of the Copper Square development and their Homeowners’ Association. Designed to fostering a sense of community, Copper Square Community Site encourages resident engagement within the private social section of the site. While community residents are expected to be the primary site users, public elements are also included to promote the community to potential residents as well.
Happy Gut by Erin Leigha Hunt
Happy Gut is a new health-related website that aims to inform, empower, and inspire men and women to take control of their own health by learning functional medicine techniques that will prevent, treat, and manage chronic illness. Happy Gut provides information on up-to-date proactive approaches that address the underlying root of illness in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract or “gut,” rather than traditional techniques that simply treat and mask symptoms with medications. Happy Gut provides practical dietary guidelines (diets and nutritional supplements) and will help users connect with a certified functional medicine practitioner in their geographical region to begin their journey toward optimal health and wellness.
Book Club Chatter by Lilach Mollick
Book Club Chatter is a site for book club members. It serves as a virtual meeting place and resource for those seeking information, reviews, podcasts, and discussion forums about books they are currently reading or plan to read. The site prepares book club participants for a discussion about the book, arming them with reviews, interviews, and insights. Book Club Chatter includes forums for user discussion, new editorial content written for the site, and external content.
A.N. Author by Lauren Neeley
Many authors have stale, uninteresting websites. Even writers with impressive readership often let their personal sites take a backseat to busier platforms like Twitter and Facebook. These authors are underusing valuable digital space that could be leveraged for branding and promotion. The A.N. Author prototype offers a template for authors to build their own websites. Through effective design, this template helps ensure efficient use of web space and invites users to connect with an author’s body of work. This prototype reflects the first phase of development; phase two will incorporate a dynamic homepage that streams social media content.
For more information about the MS in Professional Writing program please visit: http://www.scps.nyu.edu/academics/departments/humanities-arts-and-writing/academics/ms-in-professional-writing.html