Method 10 Your World Your Way

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Director
    Sam Ramlu
  • Ringatoi Matua / Design Director
    Matt Power
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    Lahiru De Silva, Roshan Nowshad, Sophie Douglas, Caitlin Palmer, Matt van der Haas, Preston Thomas, Mark Easterbrook, Gardner Bickford, James Bosworth
  • Kaitautoko / Contributors
    The University of Auckland Connected Experiences, Dominic Henshall, Hannah Rogers
  • Client
    The University of Auckland

In a rapidly changing world in the wake of Covid-19, the restrictions of early 2020 meant the usual University of Auckland recruitment programmes of school visits and face-to-face meetings were no longer feasible. Our objective was to create a new way of engaging with prospective students, providing them with a unique glimpse of their potential future in Tāmaki Makaurau.

During several workshops and through research provided by the University of Auckland, we learned that every journey to choosing a university is truly unique in ways often overlooked. Background, circumstance, culture, location and level of confidence all play major roles in decision making. Discussions frequently converged on the recurring theme of tūrangawaewae.

Our audience was clearly defined: younger, less certain, rural or remote prospective students who may not know that university is even an option for them, less so a place at the University of Auckland.

Our proposed solution was to place prospective students at the centre of the experience and encourage them to tell us about themselves. In the same way that advisors visit and converse with prospective students to build trust and understand their needs, we knew we needed to start a conversation and find out about our visitors in order to serve the most relevant content to guide them towards their next steps.

A short survey builds a profile of a prospective student. Succinct questions are presented in conversational terms that avoid academic jargon and simple, playful interactions make the survey quick to complete. Knowledge gathered during the survey is collected in a visitors’ Kete, providing a picture of their interests, strengths and values.

Visitors are welcomed to their personalised experience with a pōwhiri, echoing the official welcoming ceremony held at the Waipapa Marae for new students during orientation week. We then present back a customised desktop scene full of 3D objects to interact with — a visually unique reflection of the visitor based on their survey responses. Each object represents an area of content that prospective students can visually explore at their own pace, through tangible touchpoints that intrigue them.

In addition to visual customisation, content is prioritised so information most relevant to the visitor appears at the top of the page. Content is kept at a high level, making it easy to visually scan and fast to navigate. Opportunities exist to dig deeper with links back to the main University of Auckland site once visitors have found an area of interest.

Access to devices amongst students and families varies greatly. Design decisions were made with mobile and inclusivity in mind, ensuring we reach the widest possible audience. The design process included frequent collaboration and consultation with representatives from the University of Auckland’s Māori and Pasifika communities to ensure we were co-designing a truly representative experience presented in a contemporary way.

This initial release of Your World Your Way formed the foundation for an ongoing iterative project and a collaborative relationship with the University of Auckland, with a platform intended to develop and grow over time.