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University of Maryland, Baltimore Web Guidelines
The Office of Communications and Public Affairs (OCPA) will review and advise on website structure and content for all University administrative websites to ensure the quality and integrity of the University’s communications.
The purpose of this guideline is to establish general requirements for use of University web resources in a manner that maintains the quality, integrity, and identity of all University web content. All University web content presented on the Internet will be governed by this guideline.
Administrative Website Purview
OCPA is responsible for developing, implementing, and maintaining the University’s website structure and content. OCPA manages the CMS and establishes governance mechanisms for use of University web resources. It provides web-publishing standards for editorial guides, visual style guides, and visual identity principles.
Standards and Guidelines
Faculty, staff, students, and affiliates developing and presenting University web content will abide by OCPA’s standards designed to assure the aforementioned quality, integrity and identity. Periodic content audits will ensure accountability and quality content.
Additionally, all web applications and databases presented on the website will adhere to the University standards and guides referenced in this guideline and will be managed by the Center for Information Technology Services Web Development Group.
Content Management System (CMS)
OCPA, in a collaborative effort with the Center for Information Technology Web Development Group, supports University web needs through T4 Site Manager content management system.
Content that is linked from the University’s website to another entity or organization’s website should clearly identify it as a departure from UMB web pages.
Web content from outside the University should not use or replicate the University’s templates or identity in a manner that confuses content ownership. When appropriate, these sites should carry the UMB logo and/or branding.
OCPA uses responsive design templates to enhance user engagement with University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) websites and to enhance user satisfaction.
For questions about this guideline, contact the communications web team.
Web Content Maintenance Guideline
Content on the umaryland.edu domain should be no more than two years old.
The content presented on the umaryland.edu domain is the University’s face to the world. Maintaining a website that features current, up-to-date functionality, design, and content is essential to the University’s success and reputation.
- Users expect fresh, up-to-date content.
- When we allow old content to remain on our websites, we not only do not meet their expectations, we look as if we aren’t keeping up with the latest best practices and the latest research in web content strategy.
- It’s not advantageous to allow old, outdated, or irrelevant content clog our site search engines.
- We don’t want inaccurate content to appear in search results.
- When we provide fresh, current, well-curated content, we have an opportunity to target and engage our audiences more effectively by providing them with content that better meets their interests and needs.
- Outdated web content will confuse our users and make UMB look as if we do not value our web content.
- When our users find old content, their trust in our content as a whole degrades.
- Don’t keep it - it will not help you build and maintain your audience or meet your site goals.
- Archive old content on your department/office/school server for reference.
- Policies that are more than two years old and still in effect can remain in place, but must be reviewed periodically. After every review, update the policy’s last date of review.
- A strategic plan from 2003 (for example) that has been implemented should be removed and saved on a departmental server.