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&description=New Brand Identity and Web Site for Progressive Education Association

The Berndt Group partnered with the American Montessori Society (AMS) to develop a new brand identity and web site for the organization.

With the launch of www.amshq.org and its new brand identity, The Berndt Group has produced another great association site, for a very special client. The American Montessori Society site is an example of best practices for a major association. Developed in the Sitecore CMS, the new site and new identity for the organization is a successful example of The Berndt Group taking an organization to the next level of sophistication and strategy.

Located in mid-town Manhattan, AMS is a leading professional organization for Montessori schools and teachers, with strong connections to parents and students. The organization shares many of the goals of progressive educational associations, but also has the specific concerns of the Montessori tradition: openness, respect for individuality, and an ethic of self-directed learning. The Berndt Group strongly considered these factors while developing both the new graphic identity and the new web site for the organization. We think the result is one of the friendliest and most usable sites that we've developed.

Some of the great features of this site include: Full integration and single sign on for AMS members; TBG developed systems for member authentication and securing member only content. For example, while all users can preview the magazine, only full AMS members can read the full articles. Speaking of the magazine, it allows AMS to create a digital version of their print publication fairly easily using Sitecore. The most recent editions articles are presented on the magazine home page and AMS can feature 4 articles (not necessarily being from the recent edition). Users can quickly subscribe, linking into the Association Management System (AMS) (IMPak) site, when they see a great article they are interested in.

Another great feature is User Submitted Content; while it is not used everywhere, users can submit comments and interact. Find a Roommate for the upcoming Conference, post a local event, or add a note about the Living Legacy for 2011.

Additionally, Finding a School / or a Teacher Education Program (TEP) was very needed functionality that was lacking on AMS' old site. TBG worked with ISSI (the AMS vendor) to take school or TEP data and build a robust search tool to help users find a local school or TEP.

Annual Conferences are also a major focus for AMS and we put together a very nice schedule builder for them in Sitecore. We also have created a dynamically built Printer Friendly Schedule allowing users to build a schedule.

Also, in Sitecore we setup External Link Managers (as Content Items) so AMS can manage links that are used often and only need to update once if they ever change.

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