Standards and Guidelines

The following are basic guidelines and standards to familiarize yourself with. By no means is this an exhaustive list, but more a “tips and tricks” when working on the web.

Quick Tips

  • Think about what you put on your page, keep your audience in mind; and be clear and concise in your meaning.
  • Look at your web page on multiple devices (phone, tablet, computer and TV).
  • All pages on the website should have a consistent look to maintain a consistent brand.
  • If you need help or find errors, contact ETS Web Services.

General Standards / Getting Started

  • Think about what you are putting on your Web page. Include only important information and be clear and concise. If you have a PDF or document, can it just live on the website as an actual page, or does it need to be a linked-PDF or linked-document, uploaded to the website?
  • If it’s not ready, don’t include it or don’t publish it. Don’t use “Coming soon...,” “Under Construction,” or any other similar wording.
  • Any content added to the website may be changed by Campus Web Services at any time, if it fails to meet basic writing style guidelines, visual style guidelines or accessibility guidelines.
  • If any user fails to meet these standards, their access to edit pages may be revoked.

Text Standards

What to Do

  • When you copy and paste you may need to clear formatting to set to default text styles.
  • Make sure to proofread all text and perform spell check.
  • Be clear, concise and simple in your copy. Get to the point.
  • Make sure the most important information takes precedence.
  • Put yourself in the shoes of someone coming to your page for the first time — identify your audience.
  • Speak to your audience, don’t dumb-down your content, but make it simple and easy to understand.

What not to Do

  • Don’t change the font face.
  • Don’t change the font color.
  • Don’t change the font size outside of the predefined size options within Styles and Formatting.
  • Don’t add background colors to text unless it is specified within the Styles menu.
  • Don’t bold, underline or italicize text — if it’s all bold, italicized or underlined, none of it will stand out.
  • Don’t add additional space between characters.
  • Don’t use excessive exclamation points or all caps — your audience will think you’re yelling at them.

Additional Resources

See OU Campus Documents.

You have finished Website Basics.

Next Up: Getting Started in OU Campus.