These guidelines are established to help ensure that the web pages of the College’s academic departments and programs are effective sources of information for all audiences (including both prospective and current students, parents, and alumni).

All academic sites are required to use the “Hermione” WordPress theme. The theme is responsive, flexible and offers a number of components to organize and showcase information on any page. For more information on the theme’s available component options, see the web-style guide and component library.

Content Requirements

Each academic site should contain the following categories of content (at a minimum):

  • An introduction to the major (or minor if available)
  • Requirements of the major (and minor)
  • Course offerings
  • Special opportunities for students in the major (if applicable)
  • Faculty/staff
  • Contact information

The core departmental webpages must use these titles: Home, Program, Courses, Faculty and Staff, Facilities, News, After Graduation. Facilities and News are optional webpages. Titles for other webpages are at the discretion of the department head and/or site administrator. Titles should be a few words and fit on one line in the site menu. The order given below is recommended for the site’s main navigation.


  • The homepage title should be the name of the discipline or office, without the word “department” or “office.” Exceptions are sites based on one officer of the College, e.g. president, provost.
  • The homepage should introduce the department or office and objectives in two to three sentences.
  • The homepage should use the landing page template, which is indicated under Page Attributes, Template in the right sidebar
  • The header image should be 1440 x 810px pixels. Communications can assist with providing the site’s header image.


The program page should outline the strengths of the department/programwhy should a student study this subject at Lafayette?  This page can give the approach and/or philosophy of the department and themes emphasized in the curriculum. It should also include the requirements of the major/minor.


  • Provide a list of all courses offered by the department (similar to a course catalog). This may be organized by the current semester, next semester, and other courses.
  • Each listing should include the course number & title, a brief description, and any requirements/prerequisites/co-requisites. This includes semester-specific descriptions of courses written by the department, or official descriptions not yet in the catalog.
  • The Courses page must include a link(s) to the college catalog course entry (

Faculty and Staff

  • To create and manage a directory of faculty/staff members, use the theme’s people content type in the administrative panel.
  • Each directory listing should include a name, title/position, terminal degree and institution where it was earned (optional for staff), email address, phone number, fax number, campus address, photo, and link to the person’s personal website, if applicable. All content should be listed on this directory page.
  • This initial page should have the department head listed first, followed by other faculty in alphabetical order, then staff in alphabetical order.
  • For faculty, each profile page should include the directory information as well as office hours, research interests, teaching areas, selected publications, and honors.

Opportunities (highly recommended)

  • Give information about special opportunities for students, such as EXCEL Scholars research, internships, interim or semester study abroad led by a department professor, etc. Give examples of research topics, employers, trips, and opportunities such as publishing in an academic journal and conference presentations.

Sites may opt to include the following information:

After Graduation

  • Give examples of jobs secured and graduate schools attended by alumni with the major.
  • This includes brief success stories of graduates with the major that are produced and posted by the Communications Division.

*Career Services can provide statistics on the most recent class


  • This provides answers to frequently asked questions.
  • This should link to resources within the site.


  • The facilities page showcases features of the department’s facilities and equipment.
  • If a facility is under construction, include images, videos, and brief descriptions until the building is completed.
  • Once construction has been completed, include images, brief descriptions, and possibly video that showcases features of the completed building and, if applicable, equipment.


  • This provides links to helpful webpages off the site.
  • This displays in the right sidebar in the text box widget.


  • Post department news such as open positions, awards, publications, conference presentations, sabbaticals, research projects, etc.


  • This links to feature articles produced by the Communications Division that are pulled through an RSS feed. This can be displayed as a webpage and/or in the site’s sidebar, which would feature one to four of the most recent articles with the heading “[Name of department] News”

Best practices for effective sites

  • The mission statement should not be the first piece of content on the homepage. The homepage should either describe the mission of the department or office or introduce it, highlighting its most appealing features.
  • Do not repeat the site menu in list form in a page or post. In the mobile view, this displays as duplicate menus.
  • Keep webpage titles concise — no longer than 25 letters.
  • The site navigation should be scannable and well organized. Do not exceed 8 links on your main navigation. Keep in mind that each link on the main navigation can display a sub-menu up to two levels deep.
  • Using posts (instead of pages) is an efficient and user-friendly way to display updated news, and announcements. All posts are organized in chronological order, allow comments, and can be used as RSS (really simple syndication) feeds that enable users to receive updates automatically. In addition, an RSS component can be used to pull a categorized news content feed and display it within the body of the site.
  • Contact information should be inserted into the “Full Width Callouts” section and added on the homepage.
  • Use WordPress’ native menus functions to create the navigation menus. This functionality includes creating custom outbound links and including/excluding navigation menu items.
  • Optimize (reduce to the smallest feasible file size) all images and audio before adding them to your site. Large files slow your site performance and deplete your media storage capacity.
  • For the same reason, use a third-party service to host your videos. YouTube is recommended so that your videos can be included on the College’s YouTube channel, increasing its visibility. Use YouTube’s embedding code within your site to display the video on specific pages. Avoid uploading video files (especially large ones) to the media library. You can also use to host your videos.
  • All pages within your site automatically will be printer friendly. Avoid using PDFs and Word documents as substitutes for webpages. PDFs should only be used for forms, specific scheduling, brochures, and spreadsheets. All links to PDFs should be labeled as PDFs and open into a new page, e.g. application form [pdf].
  • Use the “Events Feed” component to insert a calendar feed within the body of the site.  The feed URL is customizable or you can select from a group of pre-established feed URLs. Avoid creating a page listing all of your events.
  • If you have multiple images to display, WordPress offers the ability to build, manage, and add photo galleries.