The University of Texas at Tyler
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OU Campus Training and Support

Best Practices

Identify Your Audience

  • Can the user understand what your page has to offer and how to use your page within the first 5-10 seconds?
  • Give users information they are looking for, not how amazing your service is.
  • A website is about solving a visitors problem. When adding content, ask this question:
    • What problem am I solving with the information I am adding to this page?

Stay Consistent

  • Use style, edits and content design that are consistent with top level pages of www.uttyler.edu
  • Font style and size remain the same on all pages. (Be careful not to bring in erroneous code when pasting from Word)
  • Compare every page you build to other pages on top level pages of www.uttyler.edu. Is the look and feel consistent? UT Tyler Template Style Guide.

Links

Use a call to action (descriptive) link when you ask a user to click on your link. Avoid URL links and language like "click on this link."

Examples of non-descriptive inline link text include:

  • "Click here"
  • "Website"
  • "Learn more"
  • "Download"
  • "Here"

Correct:

  Incorrect

Open new windows and tabs ONLY when necessary. 
According to W3C standards, all links and tabs are to open in the same window unless necessary (i.e. online secure form)

Contact Information

The appropriate style for phone number is to use periods instead of dashes:

   Correct: 903.566.7203 Incorrect: (903) 566-7203

The appropriate contact email for department webpages:

   Correct: info@uttyler.edu Incorrect: jsmith@uttyler.edu

Please request a department email through itsupport@uttyler.edu

Naming PDFs

Use generic file names when naming PDF's. Each time you re-upload your PDF, name the PDF the same file name. Use "overwrite" to replace the file.


Content

The format of the page is set up for you including the font. Building and editing your page according to the UT Tyler Web Guidelines in OU Campus is simple if you follow these steps.

Remember:

  • Keep content clean, and to the point.
  • Design your content for the reader's needs, not yours.
  • NEVER copy content from other websites. Write unique content for your site.
  • Use short paragraphs and bulletpoints. Long paragraphs and pages will not be read by users.

Avoid These

  • "Welcome to the Department of ... Website"
  • "Coming Soon" or "Under Construction"
  • "Check back often for new additions!!"

Layout (Template Style Guide)

  • Use H1 and H2 headings only at the top of each page.
  • Keep all text left-aligned.
  • Avoid erroneous HTML code into the HTML editor. (avoid <span> and <div> tags)
  • Avoid extra spacing between paragraphs, remove extra space.
  • The template font is pre-set. Bold font or italicized should be used sparingly.
  • ALL caps should be avoided along with exclamation marks.
  • Use text links to link back to other pages, avoid button graphics.
  • Save your page often as you are working within your content.

Aligning Text

  • Avoid center a paragraph; makes it difficult to read.
  • Avoid using the "heading" options to style a paragraph.
  • The default is left-aligned text.

Underlines

Avoid underlines within your text. Users will confuse underlined text with hyperlinked text.

Replacing Files

Avoid uploading a new file (.PDF) each time a file should be updated. Instead, name your .PDF a generic name. When the departments updates the file, replace the file with the same file name. See uploading files.

Duplicate Content

Avoid duplicate content. The UT Tyler website maintains extensive web-based information that should be referenced by linking to or using assets rather than duplicated.

Storing Documents

Each department site is set up with a "files" folder or "documents" folder to store documents such as PDF files. Avoid uploading files outside of  this directory. Images are to be located in your /images/users/yourdeptname.

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