Best Practices

Accessibility

Use a design that will be accessible to the largest possible audience. For a quick overview of accessibility guidelines see Section 508, Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Standards. For a more in-depth explanation of accessibility techniques, see Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0.

Keep content up-to-date

Check your content on a regular basis to ensure its accuracy. Avoid including content on your pages which is the responsibility of another department. Link to their pages rather than duplicating the information on your site. If content on your page is not current, remove it until you are able to create current content.

Copyright

Comply with all copyright laws for content—text, images, multimedia presentations, etc. that were created by others. Know where all your content and image files originated. Using content from any source, even a campus site, without permission from the creator, can violate copyright law.

Hyperlinks

  • Ask yourself what kind of information the user expects to find behind a given link. Link labels should match the title of the page that the link leads to. For example, when a user clicks on the “campus events” link, they should be directed to a page entitled “Campus Events.”
  • Make link text meaningful. Repeat usage of “click here” does not help readers easily locate the information they need. Instead, write your link text to describe the page it links to.
  • Use consistent terminology. Be aware that one term can represent different kinds of information. For example, a link to “Academics” can reasonably be a link to the academics section of the main Georgetown College website (http://www.georgetowncollege.edu/academic.htm). Do not use the same term to refer to different pages. For example, if you have a section of your site devoted to policy, select a consistent word and use it on all pages that refer to the policy section of the page. Avoid calling it “Policy & Procedures” on the index page, but calling it “Policy Information” on subsequent pages.
  • Use a consistent URL for periodical newsletters or publications Let’s say you publish a monthly newsletter. When you publish the January newsletter you might be tempted to name it january.htm. That works fine for this month, but what happens next month when the latest or current version is no longer called january.htm. Consider creating a directory called current or a file called current.htm for the latest version of your newsletter or other similarly recurring publication.
  • Avoid using icons or graphics as the only source of labeling information. Graphics and icons can be misinterpreted.


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