June 9, 2003
URBANA—The “hits” just keep on coming for University of Illinois Extension’s Urban Programs Resource Network web site. In May, the site containing a variety of pages on topics ranging from school curriculums to lawn and garden care to financial management received more than 2.9 million hits.
“A ‘hit’ represents a single page viewed on our website,” explained Jane Scherer, U of I Extension urban programs specialist. “Usage in May 2003 was 61 percent higher than in May 2002 and represents our greatest usage in any month to date.”
A number of the pages on the web site have Spanish versions. “These continue to have increased usage and now represent 5 percent of our total ‘hits’,” Scherer noted.
Queries and requests continue to come in from around the globe. A representative of a Saudi Arabian medical organization requested permission to translate one of the teacher’s guides on the site into Arabic for use in a mental health awareness campaign. In the Philippines, a magazine editor reprinted one of the site’s articles dealing with encouraging children to read. Other users report from places like Ireland, South Korea, and Singapore.
“We find continuing use in Illinois by teachers, home gardeners, consumers, as well as people living in urban counties who are interested in what their local Extension office is offering,” said Scherer.
The most popular feature is the “Great Plant Escape,” a program geared toward elementary school students and ready to be used in the classroom. In May 2003, it represented 3.47 percent of the visits to the site. Ranking next in “hits” was another classroom program, “Adventures of Herman,” which teaches lessons about ecology and recycling. Among county Extension pages, Champaign County’s led the way with 51,815 “hits.”
The Urban Programs Resources Network site is located at: http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/ .