On January 14th, 2013 we had a casual meeting with many of our department website editors, the university Website Manager, and staff from the Office of University Relations. The two main topics discussed were about the recent Nicholls Website redesign and changes introduced during the recent WordPress 3.5 upgrade. To give more information for meeting attendees and editors that were unable to attend two articles have been written about our meeting topics.
Be sure to check out the Website Editor Checklist & Notes for useful information about maintaining content on the Nicholls websites. If you have additional questions you should contact the Website Manager, or leave a public comment below.
The Nicholls website has been redesigned with a new look based on several months of work and discussion. Although these changes are numerous and affect the website in dramatic ways, the fundamental content of most Nicholls websites should display as before with a new altered look. There are only a few areas that department website editors should be aware of.
- New header images – Department websites now have the option of selecting from several photos that can be used for the large header image displayed at the top of all pages on a departmental website. Additionally, a custom header can be created that can be used. Custom header images should be approved by the Website Manager or University Relations staff. If you have ideas for a custom header, be sure to contact the Website Manager or the Office of University Relations.
- Responsive Design or Mobile & Tablet Display issues – The new Nicholls website is designed to be easier to read on smartphones and tablet computers. You may observe issues viewing some pages on certain platforms or devices. Be sure to report these issues to the Website Manager. Some websites with two columns may need to be modified to make the sites work more appropriately with other devices.
- Menus & Landing Pages – With the reintroduction of menus for navigation on each page, it should be noted that the menus and landing pages are edited to create as much usability as possible. Requests for additional links on menus and landing pages should be well thought out; Does a new link under “menu area” serve that audience well. Should my link be on the landing page for “area” or is my link a high priority link that should be visible under a “menu area”. If you find high priority areas that should listed under a menu, or if you are unsure, please contact the Website Manager.
- When will all sites be updated to the new look? – Updating the look of all Nicholls web pages is time consuming. Some areas of the Nicholls website are easy to update. Most of the Nicholls website should be updated by late January 2013, but there are areas of the Nicholls website that may not be updated. If you have questions about the update for any area, please contact the Website Manager.
The important thing to remember is that you should continue to edit and update the content available on Nicholls websites as accurately as possible. The appearance of the Nicholls website has changed, but the tools and procedures for editing content has remained the same.
There were some questions about the design process and schedule. In summary the project to redesign the Nicholls website has been slowly started for a couple years. The project was officially started in January 2012. The process was reviewed by University Relations staff with feedback from several on-campus areas including students, faculty, and staff. Additional feedback was provided from some off-campus resources. Presentations of the project were shown to Nicholls Executive Council and President’s Cabinet. If you are interested in information related to the redesign project, you may contact the Office of University Relations or the Website Manager. The Website Manager has documentation and resources saved about some of the design and technical decisions made in the design process.
If you find issues or have any questions about the changes made to the Nicholls website, you are more than welcome to contact the Website Manager.