Few groups have been as deeply affected throughout the pandemic as students. To improve their wellbeing, Student Minds needed a support resource rapidly designed and developed.

What we did

  • Visual identity
  • User testing
  • Website design and build

Student Minds, along with the Office for Students and the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, identified a pressing need among students: the pandemic is creating worry and distress for people throughout the higher education community.

They needed to quickly create and scale a digital product that could provide support and advice. The pressing need meant designing and building an effective website in just two weeks. 

The result – Student Space – is a collaborative mental health programme to support students through the unique circumstances created by the coronavirus pandemic. 

studentspace.org.uk

Student Space acts as a single point of access to support for university and college students. The platform consists of both immediate and preventative interventions to improve mental health and wellbeing outcomes. 

It offers a range of clinically developed psychoeducational resources, curates and quality-assures other types of available support and provides accessible therapeutic interventions.

In order to visualise the abstract themes being discussed, we developed a visual identity that was primarily illustrated. Being careful to be as inclusive as possible, as well as showing the reality of the current student experience, this imagery is used on both the website and across Student Space’s communications.

The Duchess of Cambridge visited the University of Derby to hear more about how Student Space is supporting students’ mental health

The site was designed and built principally for mobile devices, to reflect the usage patterns of its core audiences. Designing mobile-first helped us to make clear choices for which content would be most important for students.

We tested the website throughout production with real students, including both freshers and those who were returning from the summer break. As the pandemic situation evolves we will will continue to work with Student Minds on the project.

I feel like we talk about designing mobile-first a lot, but it’s very easy to float away from it – for ease of showcasing, user testing, among others. But when you actually do it, you get a sharp lesson in prioritising your content for your users needs.

Seb Baird, Student Minds