[wp-edu] Advice needed on using WP for ALL of the website.

Jess Planck jess at funroe.net
Fri Jan 30 14:48:01 GMT 2009

You will hear different stories from a variety of places. Developers  
in education are no different than developers in other areas and will  
be evangelical about solutions.

I cannot fault them, any solution in large organizations requires  
work. Decisions can be based on knowledge, budget, enterprise  
requirements, data portability, and a host of other factors. Of course  
cooperation, trust, and the final outcome are probably the biggest  
areas that my administrators looked at.

In my case I run a website (http://www.nicholls.edu) where roughly 80%  
is built with single installations of WordPress. I ran though several  
CMS solutions, but was forced to make a quick decision on my own. I am  
the only staff member doing web-work, so I had the leverage to choose  
a tool that I could deal with quickly and efficiently. At the time  
WPMU was not an option, but it is sure on my wish list now. It started  
as a choice, so departments could chose between static HTML and  
WordPress. I did leave the door open for other choices (drupal,  
joomla), but no one has desired anything else.

My focus was on end users, so the solution needed to be easy to use,  
easy to train, and easy to troubleshoot. My primary users are  
administrative secretaries, so the skill level is mostly based on  
desktop word-processing applications. After training an entire  
division of roughly 30 administrators to use Dreamweaver, WordPress  
became a welcome replacement.

I did one meeting with our Web Committee and showed WordPress 2.0 in  
action. I showed a couple of other solutions both OSS and Commercial.  
The questions I encountered were:

1. Cost?
2. Development? How hard is it to replace you or this WordPress thing?
3. Time frame for conversion of existing sites?
4. Extendability?
5. How can this fit into other stuff like on-line learning and  
student / employee services systems.

No. 5 was left to a wait and see since we going through a massive  
upgrade to those systems, but our IT department likes to keep some  
separation between public and private systems anyway.

The easy answer:

It depends on your organization and those involved in the decision.


[    :P    ]    jess planck    -    http://funroe.net

On Jan 30, 2009, at 6:58 AM, Abhishek wrote:

> My business schools (Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta) is  
> one of the top ranked B schools in India and hence the site needs to  
> be spot on, on the first try. Also there might be some scope for  
> outsourcing the template design. However all of the WP activity in  
> education I've been seeing is in the blogs space, and I'm wondering  
> if I should explore some other options (like Drupal, Joomla) for the  
> design of the actual site. I'm pretty confused in this regard.

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