OSU EM Web Standards

OSU Enrollment Management Web Standards Responsibilities of Web Publishers

Content validity

As a web publisher at Oregon State University , you are responsible for the
content of your pages. You must ensure that your content is up to date and
is grammatically correct. Macromedia Dreamweaver has a built in spell checker
located in the “Text” menu (Shift + F7).

Content Maintenance

Pages must be accurate and up-to-date. Establish an updating system and identify
specific individuals to help maintain content validity.

OSU expects sites to be accessible to users with visual, hearing, mobility,
and cognitive disabilities. The guiding principle is that all OSU sites must
meet or exceed Section 508 (Priority 1) standards for accessibility.


Interface Consistency

Web Pages should “look and feel” like the OSU web page template.

Page Components

OSU Banner
Use the same OSU banner for all pages.

Search (or Virtual Advisor)

OSU Includes
OSU primary “includes” location: www/httpd-docs/u_central

For example:
<!--#include virtual="/u_central/banners/banner_or5a.php"--> =
orange banner

Cascading Style Sheet (CSS)
The default OSU style sheet will be used on every page.
Link to the central OSU style sheet
<link rel="stylesheet" href="http://oregonstate.edu/cws_templates/css/default.css" type="text/css"/>

Contextual Titles
Titles are used by search engines to identify pages when users search. Additionally,
if two or more pages have the same title, they cannot be differentiated
by users or the "Favorites" capability of a browser. Page titles
also aid users who are using screen readers.

Urchin (site statistics)
All new pages should contain the Urchin webstats script.
(See Eric for more information)

Site Directory Structure

Unlinked/Landing pages
Place all non-public\landing\temporary test pages in the root directory.
The only html files in the root should be current pages or pages which fall
into the aforementioned category.

Directory rules
No capital letters

Use lowercase for all file names.
Try to limit the use of #’s and _’s.

Use clear naming conventions: printapplications.html instead of papps.html

Technical Notes


Turn on “accessibility” in Dream weaver MX 2004.
A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided (e.g., via "alt", "longdesc",
or in element content). http://tap.oregonstate.edu/webForm/a.htm

ALT tags is short for alternative tags.  ALT tags appear when you place
your mouse over an image.  They also appear when an image does not load
or is not allowed to load.  This provides a hint to a user reading from
a text only browser or one on a slow connection.  Screen readers also
use the ALT tags when reading to the visually impaired.  ALT tags are
very easy to add to your pages.

Do not use frames. Frames are not universally accessible.
The content of frames may not be searchable by search engines.

Descriptive links
Instead of denoting a link with the words "Click here" or similar
phrase, be descriptive when providing links; for example: "more information
about online applications." Consider allowing such links to stand on their
own line or provide an ordered or unordered list of links in HTML.

Meta Tags
Meta tagshelp search engines find and index your web pages.
Meta tags provide:

1. A brief description of the content

2. The edit date and name of the author or authoring department 3. Keyword
search terms for indexing.


Meta tags
For beta/test pages please include the following code in the <head> of
the document:

A robot will not index this document, nor analyze it for links.

Validate code in Bobby, W3C, etc. http://bobby.watchfire.com/bobby/html/en/index.jsp


Archive old pages on the EM Network Drive or on your department/personal hard
drive. Each department will have space allocated for archival of old pages.

Do not leave old web pages on the web server. Old pages are still “live” and
can be found via search engines and old links/bookmarks.


OSU training sessions

OSU Publications

Web sites


Krug, Steve. Don’t Make Me Think! A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability. Indianapolis : New Riders, 2000.

Veen, J. (2001). The art & science of web design. Indianapolis, IN : New Riders.

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