Chapman is a bustling university with numerous events and activities happening daily. There are concerts, lectures, tours, sports games, plays, screenings, religious ceremonies, info sessions, student activities, gallery openings, club meetings, Greek events and much, much more (phew!). And if you are like most humans, it is incredibly hard to keep track of it all mixed in with class and work schedules — and, of course, our precious social lives.
It was with this clutter problem in mind that
Strategic Marketing & Communications
decided to tackle this issue head on. Through a lot of hard work (thanks web developers!), we are proud to introduce a new resource to Chapman’s web experience:
This new site is a custom-built events calendar that integrates all school and department events together in one easy-to-use, filterable system.
Events.chapman.edu has actually been around for awhile now, being ’soft launched’ last year. This means we released the calendar to the public but did not promoted it until we felt comfortable that all involved in the backend were comfortable using the system. During that time, we have improved on the system greatly. Here are a few features.
The Three Views
One of the best features of this calendar are the various ‘views’ a visitor can utilize. By default, the system loads the
. As seen in the screenshot above this view loads events chronologically in a list, perfect for the simple scroll. Add some filters and you have a simple event browser.
The second view is the
, as seen in the screenshot below. This view is a great way to see all the events happening during the month in one shot.
And through both of the top level views, you can click into the third view which is the
These pages are the specific event pages that give the full details of the event. The information provided includes: date, time, title, location, registration and ticketing info, audience, host, category tags, call-to-action buttons, contact and event details.
And for the sake of showing the progress we’ve made, here is a before screenshot of our old, not-custom calendar event listing. As you can see, we’ve tried to make our experience a little more eye-catching (and branded) for the audience.
Filters, Filters, Filters … And Search!
What makes a calendar truly useful are the filters offered. Our filters are specifically built for both the casual browser and the visitor on a mission. In the screenshot below on the left, you can see all the filters offered. These lists grow as the community adds to the system.
The screenshot on the right is the information provided on the
that is also clickable, leading to a list view of other related events.
The search itself is fully functional (scanning all page content) and specific to the events.chapman.edu environment.
Integration and Event Submissions
To make this calendar truly functional, it must be integrated in to the systems that already exist in our university’s ecosystem. For us, this includes integration with the 25Live Event Scheduling System, the ability to add external events, and the creation of feeds for other environments like
25Live is the scheduling lifeblood of Chapman. This system is where most of our internal event planners start their process. Our new calendar is built to automatically pull information from this environment to create the marketable event listings you saw above. If you are an event coordinator at Chapman, you can
learn more about the backend of the system
Here is a screenshot of a nifty 25Live search feature located in the “submit event” screen. It allows you to paste your 25Live ID number in to quickly find your listing to edit on our calendar.
Another way to submit an event is to use our simple external events form. If your event is off campus or not in a 25Live scheduled location, this form can be your entrance point to get on the calendar. Any Chapman member (with Chapman login credentials) can submit an event for approval. The form is super easy to use and shows your final design as you build.
Feeds & Sharing
The last element to any good calendar is its ability to share the content. We have built a feed that blog owners can put on their blogs, so a school or department’s dynamic information is all in one place. We are working on similar function for www.chapman.edu as well. These feeds can show filtered views of events, so their ability is very dynamic.
The Future and Feedback
As with most of our web environments, it is our goal to continue to improve the experience. Our goal with the calendar was to create a space for all events so Chapman event planners and visitors can easily find what they are looking for. We plan on continuing our development of new features and updates, so stay tuned.
We would also love to hear your feedback. Let us know what you think about the new calendar. We are always open to suggestions, and since this calendar is built internally, we have the ability to make improvements directly. Please email me at
with your thoughts.
Enjoy the calendar!