Kate Wellings

The National Stem Centre

STEM Learning is a resource to promote excellence in teaching of the STEM subjects of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.

We worked for nine months with the staff of the National Stem Centre at York University to create a new website that brings together several legacy sites and brands into a unified brand. The new site at www.stem.org.uk provides access to approximately 12,000 learning resources, a wide range of continuing professional development courses, and information for teachers and technicians working in STEM.

Just as important as the resources are online tools for assisting with collaboration and community produced resources. These tools include groups for courses and particular areas of interest, curated lists of resources organised by age range, key stage, and subject, forums for discussion, and a personal dashboard where members can store resources and log their professional development achievements.

Apart for creating a new brand and a completely new information architecture, there were major technical challenges in this project with migrating thousands of resources, courses, and miscellaneous content. We also had to migrate 150,000 users and 50,000 organisations. Also, we needed to retain related information about the users and cross-reference that to a separate events system. This was definitely pushing the boundaries of website migration to the limit.

Although we led on all technical aspects of the project, and also on much of the detailed user experience design, we worked in partnership with Stuff & Nonsense on the visual design and branding. They led on on the tricky challenge of bringing together half a dozen separate brands into a single coherent whole. You can find out more about the branding and design work on the Stuff and Nonsense website.

As this was a very large scale project, pushing the boundaries of what's possible in Drupal, we've also written it up as a case study on the Drupal community site.

The site went live in December 2015 but we've continued to develop new features to extend the ways that it supports teachers and technicians.

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