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NOTE: Banner images should be placed in this first content block and should be at least 720px wide.

Helping you create your best online presence

The Mount's website contains thousands of pages dedicated to showcasing our academic programs, student services, research, events, news, initiatives and information about us and how to become a member of our community. As a Mount Web Liaison, you are responsible to create, maintain and advance one or more pages for your program, department or area. This web page was created to emulate best practices while gathering a number of resources to help you in your own web work.

We're here to help

Resources are available in the Communications and Marketing, and IT&S Departments to help, whether you're just starting out or are thinking about a major overhaul of web pages.

  • Gaining Access and Training
  • Troubleshooting
  • Providing guidance and counsel as you create or re-work content

What else would you like to see? 

In the drop-down menus below, we've included links to documents, videos and outline best practices for writing for the web, formatting, and more. This is a site to help you, so if there's something we could add to help you in your web work, please send your suggestions to msvu.ca or msvu.ca.

The Mount's website is one of its most vital communication, marketing and engagement tools, and is a critical component in our student recruitment marketing strategy. Our governance framework requires designated individuals and departments to take an active role in the Mount's website, using best practices and existing supports to improve site-wide consistency and the experience of those who engage with us online. 

Resources:

Getting a OneWeb account

OneWeb is a Content Management System (CMS) that we use to edit, publish and manage our website content. Individuals who have been approved to join the Web Liaison group will be given a OneWeb account from the Web Administrator in IT&S. To avoid delay, have your department Chair, Dean or Supervisor contact IT&S directly to request access. In most cases, your username will be the same as your Mount username. A temporary password will be given to you until you log in. At that time, you can create your own.

Logging in to OneWeb

Whenever you are ready to complete work on your web pages, open up a browser and find the page you'd like to work on. Then, at the top of the browser where you see the URL (i.e. http://www.msvu.ca/...), place your cursor at the end of the URL and type /?logon.

A second authentication screen will appear (seen below). Enter your unique username and password, and press "Logon".

OneWeb Log On

 

Matching training to your personal needs

For those who are new to using Content Management System (CMS) software such as OneWeb, training can be anywhere from a one-hour group session with other Mount employees to self-directed exploration through our various resources including documents, videos and this very page.

If, at any time, you feel as though a one-on-one session would be valuable, you can arrange that by contacting the Mount's Web Administrator. Depending on your needs, a session will be arranged with one or more individuals from the IT&S and Communications and Marketing departments.

Troubleshooting

If, as an experienced Web Liaison, you encounter challenges when updating information, uploading content, creating or moving pages, please contact the IT Helpdesk to report the issue. We encourage you to start there because if the issue is site-wide, it will be reported and addressed without delay. If it is something for one-on-one follow up, you'll hear back from either:

  • Paul Lindgreen (Web Administrator)
  • Christine McNeille (Manager, System & Web Services)
  • Lauren Leal (Marketing Manager)
  • Justin Creamer (Digital Content Advisor)

Edit, Save, Promote and/or Publish

Once you've logged in to OneWeb, you'll notice dotted-lined boxes around the content you have permission to edit. In the graphic below, taken from our About Us page, you can see two separate content blocks. When you hover over a dotted line, a Content menu opens up. Scroll down to "Edit..." and click.

Dotted Lines

When you choose to edit, a tool bar will appear. This tool bar has simple editing features and will enable you to make changes in formatting, upload and insert photos, and add hyperlinks to pages both within and beyond the Mount's website. See below for the complete guide on editing within OneWeb.

Tool Bar

 

Resources

 

Focusing on "Responsive" (Mobile-friendly) 

The Mount continues to shift focus on providing an optimized user experience for everyone who engages with us on our website, regardless of the size of their screen or device.

Template ListAs of March 2016, we are halfway through the transition, with a few new templates left to update.

When changing your template (Page > Modify...), you'll notice a drop-down menu with a large list of options. You'll also see we have re-named a number of templates "Do not use...", "Retired do not use...", and "To be retired". The options we encourage you to use are those labeled "Responsive", as seen at left.

Over the next few months, we will complete the transition to be fully responsive. The list on the left will become much smaller, providing you with a simplified list of clear options when creating or update pages.

What templates should be used?

The short answer is that it depends on the content, and also on where it will live within the site. As a web liaison, 95% of your pages will use an Inside Two-Column or the Accordion template. Pages like this one that contain small amounts of related content are great candidates for the Accordion template, as it creates a "digital handbook" of sorts. 

If you are struggling with choosing a template for your new page, or think your current content could be better organized in a new template, please contact msvu.ca or msvu.ca.

Five tips to serve up content in "Bite size pieces"

Many web pages on our site are chalk full of great content, hundreds of words of helpful information about programs, processes and services. The reality is, however, that these pages are overwhelming to readers unless they're written for the web.

Writing for the web is a process of understanding who is visiting your page, and developing plain-language content that helps answer their top questions, while offering information of value. 

1. Think of your visitors.

Websites are often the first place people go to find answers to their questions. They arrive, hoping to scan your content for their answer. If they're interested in 10% of what's on a page, they shouldn't have to read 100% of the page to find it. That's a negative user experience (UX).

Example: A future Mount student might visit a program landing page wondering 

  • What is this program (i.e. cultural studies), and what will I study/learn?
  • What's special about the program at the Mount, compared to other places?
  • How will this be applicable in my future career?
  • What do I need to get in, and what do I need to do while I'm there to graduate?
  • Who will teach me, and is there someone with the same interests as me?

2. Write the answers to their questions.

Answering questions will lead you to developing hundreds - or thousands - of words. Because you won't have the opportunity to see someone's face or clarify what something means, use plain language. Write short sentences. If that student called you on the phone, how would the transcript read? Using conversational and supportive language gives confidence and invites exploration. Help visitors feel the pride you have in your program or service, and help them see themselves in it!

3. Break up the copy into chunks.

You may end up with thousands of words in a single "blob" of copy. In your word document, start breaking it up into chunks or paragraphs based on topics. Give those chunks a headline. Within these paragraphs, can you use bullet points? Would indentation help? Determine the most important thing in a paragraph and make it stand out.

4. Identify opportunities for engagement.

How can you encourage someone to click through and read more information about a topic, without having to put everything front and centre? Using hyperlinks both in the paragraph and at the end leads them to exploring more details. Landing pages for areas are similar to an executive summary. If you have 500 words on a single topic, maybe you could use 50 words for a paragraph, using a hyperlink to take them to another page.

5. Make it visually dynamic.

Are there images of people, projects, or places that speak to the content on your page? Do you have graphs, art or tables that may help bring to life your content in a fresh way? If you have a PDF to download, do you say "download report" with a hyperlink, or can you use an image of the cover to make it stand out?

Resources:

Three resources are listed below from various sources across the web. The images below contain the exact same content. The left has been broken up into smaller paragraphs with hyperlinks. The right demonstrates the impact of sub-headings, indentation, bullet points and visually dynamic colours.

BEd Page AFTERBEd Page BEFOREWriting for the Web (Usability.gov)

Checklist for Plain Language (PlainLanguage.gov)

Writing for the Web Research Reports (Neilsen Norman Group)

Bringing content to life, visually

Photographs can be a powerful and dynamic element when sharing information on web pages. Images convey to readers a tone and personality of our community. Photographs reflect who we are, and allows visitors a chance to see themselves as part of our community. For these reasons and others (including copyright), we do not use stock photography, clipart or cartoon-like graphics.

Considerations and Resources

Before you begin the hunt for the right image, consider where it'll be placed and the story you want it to tell. If it's an image going on a page with a sensitive topic (counseling, accessibility), consider using a campus shot or photos that don't showcase a particular student. 

  • What size should your image be? If you're using a template like this one, where the image spans two colums only, crop to 720 pixels wide and 200 pixels tall. If you're using a template that has a single image spanning the entire width of the page, crop to 900 pixels wide by 227 pixels tall.
  • Where can you find photos? Visit the Mount's Flickr page, where you can view and download thousands of images for free. Many of these images were taken by Mount students.
  • How can you crop photos to the exact size? Visit www.picmonkey.com, where you can crop and edit your photo for free! Save it to your computer, when finished, and then upload into the OneWeb media manager.  

Flickr & Picmonkey Guide (PDF) »

Ensuring visitors see all content

Tables, in print form, can be a wonderful way to present content in an organized and logical manner. And while that same content is viewed with ease on a desktop screen or laptop, tables are not the most friendly when it comes to being viewed on a smaller screen. Desktop vs. Mobile Tables GraphicAs seen in the graphic at left, tables viewed on a desktop present all content as it would appear on a print out. On a smaller screen however, a portion of the table is not visible.

Do you really need a table?

Consider using a bulleted or simple list, wherever possible. If using images or logos, place them in a content block and manage the alignment through spacing. If you DO decide a table is a must, right click "properties" and in the width box, put 100% so it adjusts as much as possible. 

Example:

In this example, the first table represents the view on a desktop. This table has been formatted to adjust to the width of the screen, by inputting "100%" into the width box in "properties". Evolution of tablesThe table then shrinks as the browser window or screen shrinks as much as possible, before the "breaking point" to the mobile version. For those viewing this page on a smart phone, the "term ends" column would be missing. See below for an alternative layout.

 

 

Alternative Layout: Faculty Representatives (4)

  • Dr. Karen Blotnicky (July 1, 2015 - June 30, 2018)
  • Dr. Michelle Eskritt (July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2017)
  • Dr. Mary Jane Harkins (July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2017)
  • Dr. Ian Pottie (July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2017)

Placing your "Executive Summary" front and center 

For key landing pages such as programs, student services and initiatives, placing the most important content in the middle of the page will result in a better user experience on your page. 

Typically, visitors' eyes dart to the centre of the page, as seen below. While the sub-pages on the left-hand side are visible, they are secondary to what's in the middle of the page. Try to treat the middle of the page as an executive summary, sharing key points that will act as lures to pages below. Include hyperlinks, where possible, to sub-pages. 

Middle Section

Share your events with the community

All web liaisons who have publishing access have the ability to add events to the University event calendar, which is viewed toward the bottom of the msvu.ca home page and on the second tab, between "News" and "Twitter".

Home page Events

Once logged in, click through to "More events". When you scroll over the calendar image, you'll see the word "Application". Scrolling over this will prompt "Administer..." to appear. Click this...

Events Administer

You'll then be taken to a page that lists all of the upcoming events. Click "Add..."

Add Events

On this page,  you'll see a form where you can add your event information and any special images or information.

***Note: As there are only four event spaces on the home page, please do not place date rages more than 1-3 days for conferences or special events. For events that are held weekly, consider putting individual events in separately, or the launch date for each type. Events that are entered as longer than one week (up to several months as a weekly series) may be removed to ensure all programs and departments have equal opportunity to promote their events.

Events enter info

 
My Event is not posting !
If your event fails to post ie. you submit the form and nothing appears to happen, then you may consider the following fix:
In the upper menu of Internet Explorer->Tools->Compatibility View Settings->Add this website: enter ‘msvu.ca’
Try submitting an event again. If you are using IE for other activities and notice something quirky you might consider removing the setting just added, and add it back when needed.