Web Content Management System (WCM) Policies

Each college, department and office is required to designate a web maintainer, who will be trained in the web content management system (WCM). This person will be responsible for updating content on the website using a workflow within the WCM. The workflow is simply a series of approval steps within the software.  

Faculty or staff members who are designated department maintainers can have students assist them. It is recommended that the student's supervisor is also trained. Training is provided on a regular basis. To set up training, contact cms_training@uml.edu.

General Policies

  • Open sans is the font used throughout the university pages.
  • Text options can be accessed using the style button in the toolbar. Styles not within the set parameters will be stripped out. 
  • Links to documents should be designated as such and should open new windows. 
  • Links to websites outside the university should open new windows. 
  • Reducing redundancy across the university’s pages is a goal of WCM – enabling information to be updated in one place. Web Services will determine where the information should “live” and encourage others to link to that page. For example, tuition and fee information is on The Solution Center page; Admissions and other departments can then link to that page.
  • Photos should have alt tags.

Department Content vs. Catalog Content

Here is general information about the difference between Department and Catalog content. To understand how to ask for changes visit the "How to..." page.

Department Website

The goal of departmental websites is to promote the departments’ benefits, research activities and achievements to prospective students, parents, researchers and job applicants. Department sites are maintained by the individual departments. Information includes:
  • Profiles of students, alumni and faculty
  • Department highlights
  • Overview of research and community activities
  • Information for current or prospective students
  • Faculty/staff biographies that link to curriculum vitaes and/or faculty websites

Online Academic Catalog

The goal of the academic catalog is to provide policy and course information to prospective and current students to allow them to graduate in a timely fashion. The Academic Catalog:

  • Houses institutional admissions, academic and financial aid policies.
  • Course descriptions are pulled from the SiS database.
  • Maintained and monitored by the Provost’s Office.
  • Changes and updates usually will need to go through the appropriate governing bodies.  For example, a change to an undergraduate policy must first be reviewed and approved by the Undergraduate Policy Committee and then approved by the Faculty Senate.
  • Site includes graduate, undergraduate and continuing education information. Continuing Education data is maintained by the Division of Online and Continuing Education.

Degree Pathways

Degree Pathways - previously called courses of study, curriculum check sheets or career track information - belong in the academic catalog. This information is an component in Tridion and then can be linked from the department pages. Undergraduate programs are maintained by the Registrar's Office to match SiS. Please contact the Registrar with any changes that need to be made to a degree pathway.

Graduate programs are maintained by the Provost's Office, Graduate Administration. Please send PDF or Word documents to the Director of Graduate Administration Deborah White to be uploaded into the catalog. Once the link is live, a link can be created on the department page.

Photo Guidelines

Photos or other graphics (i.e., logos, graphs, not clipart) may be included in the content areas of department pages. There are restrictions to minimize download times:

  • Photos should be optimized for the web
  • Three photos are allowed per page.
  • Photos should be 800 pixels wide for on the page and 1600 pixels wide for the top of the page with a file size no larger than 256kb

Photo Galleries

For pages requiring more than three photos, a photo gallery should be used. Websites should not be used as an archive for dated photos or other materials. Please file a web ticket to have a gallery created and placed on your website. 

Photos on Bio Pages

Faculty and staff members are encouraged to use headshots on bio pages. They need to be a minimum of 800 pixels wide. You can submit your professional photos (color only) via our online biography update form. Professional headshot photographs can be taken at Eastern Photography, 5 Webber St., Lowell, 978-937-0101 for a minimal charge billed to your department. If a professional headshot is not available, the standard blue silhouette will be used

Site Design

  • Up to 12 primary navigation buttons are allowed, 10 (or fewer) is recommended. 
  • The current navigation menu format in Tridion enables three levels of navigation to be visible. Second and third levels “drops down” or expands when top level is clicked on. 
  • It is preferred that there are About and Contact pages for each site.

Site Design

A university-wide template has been designed with the flexibility to organize information in a variety of ways. The template works on all devices, meets federal accessibility standards and is optimized for search engines. Each site can be customized with photos, graphics and other content to maximize impact.

The university logo will be used for each site. Read more about our visual identity in our brand standards guide.

If a department has specific pictures or images, the designer will make every effort to incorporate them into the design. The designer may use stock photography if images from the department are not available. Clipart is not acceptable for website use.

Updates to Website Content

The Web Communications team must approve all website changes before they go live. This is to ensure consistency across all pages, reduce the amount of typos and make sure the pages are correctly formatted and linked.

Tasks generally go live within 24 to 48 hours after they have been received by the Web Communications team. Occasionally, a task may take longer if it has issues that need to be resolved or if it is complicated (i.e., many new pages that need to be added to the navigation). If you need an urgent approval please see below.

Sometimes, Web Communications approvers may have to reject tasks if there is missing information, information that belongs on another site or if the page is formatted incorrectly.

If you want to be notified when your task has been approved, please indicate so in your task notifications and or send an email requesting to be notified to webcontent@uml.edu.

Urgent Approvals urgent

In the case of a major error on a page or time-sensitive material, please follow-up with an email or phone call to the web content staff at webcontent@uml.edu or by calling 978-934-3875. It is the responsibility of the department editor to submit tasks allowing for adequate time for the task to be approved before the content goes live.

Alias Policy

An alias (also known as a redirect or short link) automatically brings users to the right place in a website by typing a shortened web address (www.uml.edu/anyname). Aliases are appropriate for print publications and advertising. Aliases can be set up for sites at the discretion of Web Services. 

Aliases should be intuitive and follow the traditional format, www.uml.edu/anyname. Web Services staff can help you determine the best alias for your project. Please alert Web Services prior to referencing an alias in print materials or advertising to ensure that the alias is working and doesn't already point to a different location.

To request an alias for a site, submit a web ticket.


Web Services does not recommend subdomains (anyname.uml.edu). To maintain a clear presence in print publications and maximize search engine results, Web Services recommends using aliases. Best practices indicate that subdomains provide no benefit from a marketing perspective, require more work on the back-end to make them functional and have the potential to dilute search engine rankings. Additionally, using both subdomains and aliases is confusing to users as they navigate throughout the UMass Lowell website.