Path™ is your journey to academic success.

Education is a foundation: a journey of choices, exploration, and knowledge-building. The Ellucian Path Design System™ honors that journey and is the foundation for world-class higher education solutions.

Path™ leverages Ellucian’s deep experience in higher education. Whether a student is registering for classes, a faculty member is uploading grades, or a staff member is looking at their available vacation days, Path™ exclusively caters to higher education goals.

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Discovery and alignment.

I needed to identify immediate needs and our long term goals. So, I conducted interviews with design, engineering, and my product partners. I evaluated component usage across products, audited existing UI kits and tools, and hosted recurring workshop for the design team to talk about incoming updates. 

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Understanding impact.

To enable successful contribution, I mapped out the strategy for how the different systems would stay in sync, inherit from each other, and still support divergence and uniqueness where needed.

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Define a design process.

Contributions would need to go through the new design process, get approval from tech, and the Design Standards Council—a small group of hand-picked designers from the UX team that excelled at systems thinking and visual design. This new process enabled more contributions from products consuming Path and allowed:

• Management of multiple contributions at once
• Teams to work on different stages in tandem
• Teams to contribute based on their own needs
• Tech partners to be more involved earlier

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ChangelogScreenshot

Component hierarchy.

Since we were adopting Figma as a new tool and creating the space to build the entire UI kit from scratch, it gave us time to think about larger scalability issues. I created a hierarchy for system elements based on the practice of atomic design to provide clear definitions that would help govern process and structure moving forward. These definitions also proved valuable in creating a common language amongst partners across disciplines and teams. 

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Design tokens.

Path had established Tokens, however, there were many inconsistencies and quickly realized it wasn’t scalable for new additions such a Dark Mode. To help make our Tokens more scalable, I took a hierarchy approach which allowed us to adapt and update our systems quickly and still assign unique option tokens to values. I was able to start this journey with our Color Tokens, with typography tokens undergoing a revamp when we adopt our
updated brand fonts. 

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Introduction
Color-Guidelines

A foundation to accelerate the UX team.

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