Review: New Eastfield website must improve

Emylee Lucas/The Et Cetera
Emylee Lucas/The Et Cetera
By DAVID SILVA
@DavidSilvaETC

It’s hard to review a website that doesn’t exist. Days after the Dallas County Community College District “renovated” its websites, Eastfield’s links were all broken. You had a pretty little glass house of a homepage that didn’t have any usable links whatsoever.

It’s working now, for the most part, and aside from the fact that I’m evolutionarily pre-disposed to hate change, it’s just a frustrating mess.

The interface is simple and allows users to find portals to eConnect, eCampus and other DCCCD websites, which all have the same layout.

Beyond that, it gets a little more complicated. I’m not sure whether it’s the lack of a fully navigational top bar or the lack of a sidebar, but finding what you’re looking for often requires more clicks and scrolls than the previous website.

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Functionality aside, the layout looks nice, and the consistency between the DCCCD websites helps create an increasingly interconnected network.

The Eastfield website fortunately has an employee directory that allows students to find contact information for any faculty or staff member, though it would be helpful to include an office number and a central list of department contact information. I know this requires consistent maintenance the district wouldn’t want to invest in.

Missing links are still a problem on the site, most noticeably with the nonexistent library home page, which takes multiple searches to find.

The new website, despite having a banner for upcoming campus events, is missing the convenient slider present in the older edition.

There’s a “News” section and “Events” calendar near the bottom of the page, but the “News” section isn’t updated quickly, and many of the events in the calendar include no additional information.

As a student, I don’t know what upcoming events interest or benefit me.

The old website included this outdated “News” and non-informative calendar, but the slider on the home page would often make up for it.

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Some links lead to homepages that are formatted to the older version of the site, such as that of the police department or most clubs.

This is far better than having a broken link, but these pages are still in dire need of an update.

The introduction of the new website and the subsequent broken links were pretty disastrous for the DCCCD.

But now, while it’s up and running for the most part, it displays the possibility of improving from the previous version if updates are made.

It lacks accessible pieces for its users, but hopefully the district will revise this soon. At least give us a direct link to the library.

Rating-wise, the website gets one star for the fact that it can actually navigate through links, although it hasn’t done that fully, and a second star for the fact that if I try hard enough, I can get to the page I’m looking for.

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