Catalyst collaborate with the Ministry of Education to transform the experience of students and teachers visiting StudyIt

Colorful dashboard for 'StudyIt' - mainly purples, blues and yellow.


Ministry of Education (MoE) is the Government's lead advisor on the New Zealand education system, helping shape the direction for sector agencies and providers.



MoE’s StudyIt is a heavily used repository for support information for students studying NCEA subjects, including a discussion forum for students and teachers.

However, the site's design and UX had not been updated since 2004 and appeared dated, lacked mobile device compatibility, was difficult to navigate, and had some stability issues.

In addition to this, the content offered to students is spread across a number of different locations.



Catalyst and the Ministry of Education collaborated for a website redesign and redevelopment to transform the experience that students and teachers have of StudyIt.

After initial research, our team progressed with the concepts, UX for both desktop and mobile devices, visual designs, user testing, and a unique and fun illustration set.

StudyIt is now an engaging hub for secondary students, who can now easily find information by subject matter. 

Students are also actively encouraged by the site's design to ask questions and receive answers from teachers and other students.

Phillip Rooney, Senior Software Engineer at Ministry of Education of New Zealand, said “Catalyst was very professional in its design, which is intuitive for users."

The platform’s illustrations clearly convey their purpose with a fresh creative twist.

Students are actively encouraged by the site's design to ask questions and receive answers from teachers and other students.

Rachel Lynch, Designer and Illustrator,  wanted students to engage with the learning material using illustrations that are visually exciting and pinpointing moments of action and anticipation.

I played around with figurative and conceptual ideas, for example using a slice of pie to represent pi in mathematics. Taking a humorous approach to the illustrations was my way of alleviating some stress for students. Using vibrant colours, doodled notes and a bold illustrative style, I did my best to capture the essence of a contemporary student’s experience.

-Rachel Lynch, Catalyst Graphic Designer and Illustrator.

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