Paris American Academy educates an international cohort of students in fashion design, interior design, fine arts and creative writing. They asked us for a brand new digital presence that would engage their audience and entice new students by offering a premium online experience.
Understanding the school's entire offering posed interesting challenges in our early discovery sessions. With our client so immersed in their internal knowledge, and our team so new to the project, we had to bridge a vast context gap before starting work in earnest.
These challenges, however, allowed us to identify more closely with our target audience, fortifying our insights and empowering us to devise a more precise website strategy and a more bespoke user experience for Paris American Academy's students and staff.
We took a convoluted and laborious paper-based form and redesigned it for clarity and simplicity, with requirements detailed up front, only relevant information shown in any given study stream, and the ability to submit and pay for an enrolment application online.
A complete brand experience extends far beyond any online platform, but enrolment is a student's first transaction of substance with Paris American Academy. It was necessary for the new website to offer a smooth process, not just to reduce friction during conversion, but to lay the right foundation for the student's overall experience throughout their course of study.
When visitors arrive on the site, they're greeted with a powerful brand device that doubles as navigation, consolidating all the available courses and study streams. Because the term "design school" doesn't adequately describe Paris American Academy's full offering, we wanted to make it obvious from the outset what students could choose from.
Styling — we drew inspiration from European design patterns and magazine styles, imitating the feel of a traditional printed college course booklet.
Knowing the school would publish their constant supply of impressive visual content, we created a clean, minimal look & feel to contrast and frame the diverse colours and art styles in their imagery. This was particularly important for the News and Student Work sections, home to the site's most dynamic content, and susceptible to the known challenges of long-term content management.
Our visual frameworks were designed to suit a range of content, allowing the brilliance of student work to shine, or elegantly presenting an article's key message in the absence of imagery
With the reimagined website, Paris American Academy courts new students with its sophisticated brand and culture, driving visitor engagement and offering a premium user experience to its international audience.