UMB Website Improvements

We've Heard Your Feedback!

February 12, 2016

Based on feedback from user testing and survey results, the CPA web team plans to make a wide range of revisions to the University of Maryland, Baltimore website templates. First up are several improvements to make searching our site a smoother experience.

Improved Legibility in the Header and Footer

Accessibility is incredibly important to us. In response to users who found the links and search bar difficult to read due to size and contrast, we've pumped them up. You will notice the colors in both the header and the footer have been adjusted to increase contrast and clarity. The search bar also has been filled with a brighter, lighter gray to make it easier to spot and to illuminate your search terms as you type them. Please continue to reach out to us with any accessibility issues you encounter. 

Screenshot of redesigned header

Revised Search Tabs

‌We hear you. The search needs work. Rest assured — it's a priority and a work in progress. 

The tabs above your search results — we hope you've noticed them — have been modified. In the previous iteration, the default view returned results from every site within the University domain ( plus all of the schools). This caused frustration and confusion; users couldn't understand why they were presented with results from sites other than We've modified the tabs so that, initially, results from ONLY are presented. You still have the option to search all of the sites by switching to the "All" tab. We've also added new tabs for the Common Calendar and The Elm.

Screenshot of redesigned search tabs

Formatting Your Search Terms for Success

Like most websites, our search bar is powered by Google. While you may not see an "advanced search" option on our website, there are methods for formatting your searches that will perform an advanced search and potentially improve your results. These methods will work for you in our search and on any other google powered search. 

To find pages with ...Do this in the search box ...
 All of the words you enter  Type the important words: tricolor rat terrier
 An exact word or phrase  Put exact words in quotes: "rat terrier"
 Any of the words you enter  Type OR between all the words you want: miniature OR standard
 None of certain words  Put a minus sign just before words you don't want: -rodent, -"Jack Russell"
 A range of numbers  Put 2 periods between the numbers and add a unit of measure: 10..35 lb, $300..$500, 2010..2011

We've added a "Formatting Your Search Terms for Success" link at the the bottom of the search results so that you can come back to this information at any time.

Restyled File Format Information

Lastly, we've modified the type styles on the search results so that the file format stands out. This way, users will know if they're being directed to a document or a website before they have clicked. 

Screenshot of restyled file format information

Your feedback is incredibly helpful. Please continue to reach out to us when you encounter problems with the site or you have an idea for improving it. We'd especially like to hear when you can't find something. Let us know where you expected to see it so that we can consider moving it into a new location. ‌

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