The UW Bothell website is a critical tool and the front door of the University’s online presence. It is important that as a campus community we maintain www.uwb.edu and all its sub-sites according to best practices and at the highest quality possible.
To that end, this page outlines the management and governance of the UW Bothell web environment. Web governance refers to people, policies, procedures, standards, and guidelines that govern the creation and maintenance of our official website.
Note: This is a working document and is subject to change to meet the evolving needs of the University.
- Roles & permissions
- Training & education
- Written Content
- Information architecture
- Brand compliance
- Visual Content
- Third Party Applications
The website www.uwb.edu (also bothell.washington edu) is the sole property of the UW Bothell; while certain faculty and staff will have access to edit certain portions of the site, create new content and remove old content, the site and all its subsites remain the property of the University.
The website provides a platform to showcase the University’s best qualities and project a positive image to the entire world. It is a strategic asset that carries enormous influence and provides global access to all aspects of the University. With more than 100 hundred web contributors managing portions of the website, guidelines that encourage clarity, accuracy, and consistency are essential to protecting the University’s online image. This document aims to cover such web governance.
UW Bothell’s Office of Marketing & Communications has access to all areas of the UW Bothell website and, to ensure quality, may edit/alter content as needed for accuracy, clarity, grammar, spelling, usage, style and accessibility, as well as to conform with University naming conventions and branding. The University reserves the right to revise or delete content that does not meet acceptable use guidelines or the standards outlined in this policy.
All academic programs and departments must have their primary websites within the UW Bothell website (www.uwb.edu). This is best practice both in terms of marketing and branding but also provides the best experience for website users. There are several considerations to support this policy.
- To market the University and our programs effectively online, we must provide a consistent, predictable experience.
- It’s important that users can find our programs using search engines. Those results suffer when there are duplicate, competing websites.
- We have state and federal mandates that guide us in providing an accessible experience for online users. We can’t oversee websites not included in our University website domain.
Units that have specialized needs will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
The Marketing & Communications team within UW Bothell Advancement provides support for users of WordPress on campus. General questions about WordPress should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Users should allow 24 hours for an initial response.
The team is able to provide some services to faculty and staff depending on workload and institutional priorities. Services that can be provided by the web team include:
- User testing
- Information architecture
- Site review/redesign
- SEO analysis
- Calendar (Trumba) support
- User support (routine requests)
- Training on WordPress
Support for website projects is subject to approval by the Office of Marketing & Communications. Projects are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. The projects selected for strategic development or redevelopment are those that serve the largest number of users and align with University priorities and goals.
Examples of large projects include:
- website redesign
- creation of a new top-level directory
- creation of a new Trumba calendar
- webpage reorganization or information architecture review
- search engine optimization
- user-centered design
- content strategy
Requests should be made to email@example.com for review. Depending on the scope of the project, please allow one to five months for completion.
Marketing & Communications is the product manager for the University of Washington Bothell website. Requests should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org for review.
Specific services provided by the team include:
- Search engine optimization
- User-centered design
- Information architecture, including URL naming conventions
- Publisher roles/rights
- Responsive design
- Privacy considerations (including FERPA/HIPAA compliance/General Data Protection Regulation – GDPR, protection of personally identifiable information)
- Content strategy
- Evaluation of third-party web applications
- Campus calendar (Trumba)
- User interface
The Office of Marketing & Communications has governance for other key digital tools, including:
- Social media platforms
- Chancellor’s mailing list
- “UWB Advisory” emails
- Emergency notification tools, including UW Alert, AlertUs and Flash Alert
- Trumba (campus calendar)
The UW Bothell website is a joint venture between the Office of Marketing & Communications and the Enterprise Services Delivery Team (ESDT) in Information Technology.
Responsibilities of the Enterprise Services Delivery Team include:
- Provide sustaining support for uwb.edu in a break-fix model system
- Software development
- Requirements gathering
- Specifications documentation
- Help and training
- Performance measurements
- Technical consultation
All content will be created and published to the UW Bothell website running WordPress CMS, which is the content management system of the University. No other software product may be used within UW Bothell’s approved CMS and its build architecture. Additional sites, upon approval, may be linked to when appropriate.
IT staff and select members of the Marketing & Communications team (such as the UX designer and front-end developer) have global access to the website.
The Marketing & Communications team may revoke permission at any time if an editor or contributor persists in adding content that is inaccessible, presents security and privacy concerns or is inconsistent with University editorial guidelines.
Permissions for content managers have three roles: Primary editor, editor and contributor.
The primary editor may designate individuals who have the ability to publish content on a web page. Each top-level directory will have one primary editor, who may designate a backup in situations when they are out of the office. This person is responsible for maintenance of the page and for supervision of all editors and contributors who work on the page. Primary editors are responsible for:
- Following best practices in SEO
- Approving editor and contributors’ permissions
- Having knowledge of content accessibility and branding best practices
- Site Improve – quality assurance report review
- Analytics: request and reviews
An editor may add and publish content to pages within directories for which they have been given permission. An editor can create, change, publish, archive and delete pages from the website without needing approval from anyone. Student workers cannot hold the role of editor.
The contributor can make changes to a webpage but not publish. Editors should notified by contributor when edits are ready for review and publishing.
Only content managers who have been formally trained will be given access to WordPress, which is the University’s content management system. Primary editors may request training for new users with trainer following the process to request access. A member of the Marketing & Communications team will provide in-person training sessions on how to edit the website; it is the trainee’s responsibility to absorb the material, to practice what they learn in these sessions and to use the training and style documents provided. Training can be offered upon request regarding tools not covered during the initial training.
Training is available for content managers who need to publish changes and do high level work on the unit’s website. This training will include instruction on proper use of <div> tags, accessibility and branding considerations, management of website content usability, and more. Additional training will be made available to advanced users based on their needs.
Accessibility training is held every year along with other accessibility related topics for content editors and the campus community, held by the Accessibility Committee (formerly UDAL) in May to honor Global Accessibility Awareness Day.
The University’s website embraces a writing style that aim to engage readers. Web visitors are often task oriented; they skim and scan, getting just enough information to get to their next destination. Subheadings and bulleted and numbered lists are tools to help achieve these goals.
1. The UW Bothell website is the primary marketing and EXTERNAL communications tool for the University. It is not an intranet and should not be used for internal documents. Use SharePoint or Google Drive for internal documents.
2. One of the highest priority audiences for uwb.edu is prospective and current students. Content that is not student-centered should be evaluated to determine if it’s appropriate for other external audiences of the University’s public-facing website.
3. Content on the website must be “digital-first.” Review all content on a mobile device to be sure it can be used easily.
Top-level directories (i.e. “uwb.edu/name”) will be created by the Office of Marketing & Communications, which has reserved a list of URL (uniform resource locator) names for future institutional needs. Email email@example.com to request a new URL. The naming of a new URL is based on best practices around search engine optimization, information architecture and UW Bothell content strategy.
To convey a clear and consistent message, it is critical for all parts of the site to use the University’s official visual identifiers (logos) and the University naming conventions and style outlined in our brand guidelines. UW Bothell follows the UW Bothell style guide as well as the central UW style guide and the Associated Press style guide.
All images and videos used on the UW Bothell website must be accessible. This includes photographs (must include alt tags) but also illustrations, slides and PDFs. See our guide to accessibility best practices.
Photography that meets a high professional standard plays a critical role in creating a positive image of UW Bothell. The photos used on the website should inspire prospective students, faculty and staff; should and make a connection with the people and activities depicted; and should make alumni, donors and other partners or supporters feel proud of their connections with UW Bothell. Because diversity is a core value at UW Bothell, it is important to show a range of genders, ethnic backgrounds, races, ages, etc. in our pictures. Alt tags must be used with all images.
Photos used on the UW Bothell website must be the property of the University. This means it is a stock photo that the University gains access through via a paid subscription or it is photography taken by a University photographer. Photos that feature images of any person must have a signed talent release.
The Office of Marketing & Communications provides a photo library via SmugMug for use by campus communicators. Images on the UW Bothell SmugMug site are licensed for use and persons featured in the photos have signed talent releases. Download the talent release form or learn more about marketing and communications.
Videos are an important component of telling the UW Bothell story and, like other materials that tell our stories, should adhere to University brand standards and be consistent in style, tone and message. For information on graphics and fonts that should be used in videos posted on the website, refer to this graphics webpage.
All videos posted on www.uwb.edu must be ADA compliant. All videos that appear on the UW Bothell website must be captioned. This applies to videos produced through any UW staff, the UW Video Production Center and independently-produced videos.
All units should contact the IT Enterprise Services Delivery Team prior to the purchase of third-party applications to ensure the applications follow UW Bothell branding, privacy and accessibility standards. Applications that do not meet UW Bothell standards will be removed from the website.
Google Analytics has been embedded in all website pages, so units wanting to track page views do not need to embed codes on their own. Units with questions about how to get or use analytics data should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Social media platforms enjoy a wide reach and are subject to review by the Office of Marketing & Communications. All social media platforms that operate under the auspice of UW Bothell must comply with University of Washington social media guidelines.
Those who operate social media platforms on behalf of UW Bothell must comply with the social media guidelines of the University of Washington.
- Follow UW Bothell and UW brand guidelines.
- Incorporate the UW’s website colors: #39275B for purple and #C79900 for gold.
- Respect copyright, fair use and financial disclosure laws.
- Don’t pick fights.
- Correct your own mistakes.
- Verify information before you post it.
- Make sure your links work.
- Make sure you’re creating dialog, not just pushing content. Give your fans something to respond to or act on.
- Thank people for input and feedback.
- Be human, even when you’re interacting as an entity rather than as an individual.
- Be relevant and timely and add value! That means being aware of conversations that are already going on without you.
The number of reach social media tools available today can be overwhelming. Fortunately, our colleagues in University Marketing and Communications on the Seattle campus have put together some “best practice” guidelines for some of the most-used social media tools.