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Web Style Guide

SWOSU intends for pages to be attractive and functional and reflect positively on the university, its organizations, and its community. The Web Style Guide has been established as a set of guidelines and recommendations for sites on the SWOSU Web. All pages shall adhere to the standards established in the Web Style Guide.

  1. Plan ahead. Before creating webpages determine the purpose, the intended audience, and what materials are going to be included or linked to. Make up a logical “map” of your web area.
  2. Provide continual review and maintenance of the webpages. As organizations change so should the pages about those organizations.
  3. Use “valid” HTML and avoid browser-specific code as much as possible. Check webpages with multiple browsers.
  4. If graphics, audio, JavaScript, or other components are required to get the meaning from the webpage, provide alternative material that does not require these items. Users may choose to disable these capabilities within the browser.
  5. Try to keep total page size (HTML file, images, and animations) below 75k to minimize access time. Consideration needs to be made for users with slower connection speeds.
  6. Include information specifying the file type of a document available for download. It is recommended to provide file size for larger files to alert users of possible slow download. (ex: PDF-250KB)
  7. Avoid long pages – especially for your initial or “home” page. It is better to have several small documents linked from a table of contents than one large document.
  8. Design to avoid horizontal scrolling of pages. Keep in mind that the screen resolution of 800 x 600 is still being utilized. Wherever possible, design with relative widths or widths no larger than 760 pixels.
  9. Use background and text colors with enough contrast between them to make the text clearly distinguishable. Be aware that some users may not be able to print your document if the text color is set to white. White background with black text is best for readability. Avoid using graphical backgrounds that detract from the content of the webpage.
  10. Don’t activate a link on your webpage until the linked document is available.
  11. If an external link is included on the webpage, check periodically to make sure it is still active and the content is still applicable.
  12. Maintain visual and editorial consistency across similar webpages. Creating templates will help achieve this objective.
  13. If accessing information on the webpage requires a plug-in, please provide sufficient download information. (The following link may be used. http://www.swosu.edu/resources/downloads.aspx)

For additional assistance, please contact Web Services at (580) 774-3179 or webmaster@swosu.edu.