Writing for the web

First off – it is important to think about your audience and their habits when updating content on the website. People scan and read differently on the web, so you need to write a little differently too. Here are some helpful tips on writing for the web and updating our site via WordPress. All content on the College website must follow these guidelines.

Logging in

  1. Staff Login linkOpen your favorite web browser. We will use Google Chrome.
  2. Next go to environment.uw.edu, and find the staff login link at the bottom of the page, under the search bar. You can also go directly to “environment.uw.edu/wp-admin” and bookmark for future use.
  3. Log in using your UW NetID. If you have trouble logging in, please contact the online marketing team via email at coenvweb@uw.edu.
  4. After logging in, you’ll be forwarded to the WordPress Dashboard, which includes links to the content types you’ll be working with, basic web stats and  a list of pending changes to the website.


Editing a page

  1. Hover on the “College of the Environment” text in the upper left corner of the page, on the black admin toolbar and click “Visit Site.”
  2. Now, navigate to the page you want to edit.Edit page link
  3. Once the page is loaded, you’ll notice “Edit Page” is an option on the Admin Toolbar. Click Edit Page.
    Toolbar icon
  4. Your will be directed to the WordPress editing screen.
  5. Click on the button “Toolbar Toggle” for a fuller set of formatting tools.
  6. Edit the text in the box below.

Formatting text

Although the text editor in WordPress looks a lot like a word processing program, there are differences between formatting for print and the web. Instead of choosing specific text sizes, bolding, and fonts, sets of formatting attributes are contained in “styles.” One of the most important set of stlyes are headings, which are useful for people scanning text and improve search engine results for your content. To apply styles to your text follow these instructions:

  1. Highlight the text you would like to make into a header.Predefined styles
  2. When in the “Edit Page” view, you will see a dropdown menu that says “Formats,” click on it to view different styles.
  3. Paragraph is the default body text style. Introduction is the text you would use at the beginning of a page to give a quick summary. Button is a style that can be wrapped around links to turn them into buttons, like this:
  4. The styles are:

    Heading 1

    Heading 2

    Heading 3

    Heading 4

  5. Heading 1 is used on page titles, so no need to use it (ever!). Heading 2 is most commonly used for sub-titles. Heading 3 works for sub-sub titles. Heading 4 shouldn’t be necessary. This page you are reading now uses Heading 2 for sub-headings.
  6. Hyperlinks are added by clicking on the hyperlink button. Please add a title for screenreaders, even if it is the same title as the page you are linking to. Click “Opens in New Window” if it is not on the College of the Environment webpage (doesn’t begin with environment.uw.edu.)

Uploading and placing a picture or fileAdd media button

  1. While editing a page, click on the spot you want your picture or file link to go, then click on the “Add Media” button.
    Upload files tab
  2. If uploading a new file click “Upload Files,” otherwise, select your image/file and skip to step 4.
    Select files button
  3. Click “Select Files” and choose the file(s) you want to upload.File attachment details
  4. Now you will see a column on the right with image attributes, fill these in as much as possible.
    Title: The name of the image, or what you want the file’s text to say on the website (e.g., “November 4, 2013 Meeting Minutes” or if described elsewhere, “Minutes”)
    Caption: For images only – a caption that goes under the image. Photo sources go here.
    Alt Text: For images only – this text is for visually impaired users who use screen readers, or for people with very low bandwidth connections. Please fill it in with a description of the image. Because of accessibility concerns, all images on the College site must include Alt Text.
    Description: Optional text that describes the image internally.
  5. Attachment display settings are different for pictures and files.
    Pictures: Choose Alignment: Right, Link to: None, Size: Thumbnail – 200 x 200. These are our default settings, and if you want to change them, do so carefully.
    Files: Use default settings. Link to: Media File
  6. Click Insert into Page.Image editing toolbar
  7. If you want to edit a picture further, click on the picture and click the photo button. To delete, click the red crossthrough button.

Submitting your revision

You have the ability to propose updates to the website, but all changes are approved by the Marketing and Communications team before they’re made public. Updates are typically approved at 10 a.m. on business days. We work hard to approve updates quickly and only do this to make sure visual and editorial styles are consistent across the site.

  1. If you want your edits to happen in the future, click on the edit link next to “Published on: [date].” You can then choose the date that your revision comes live. By not changing this, you are requesting an immediate revision.
  2. When you are ready to submit your revision, click the big blue button “Submit Revision.”Revision manager status
  3. Now you’ll see this page, and if you click on “View it in Revisions Manager” you can see more about your edits.Pending revisions
  4. In Revisions Manager, you’ll see your edit, and be able to update it. You can also see all pending revisions to the page at the bottom.
  5. To delete/revoke your revision, click the Delete link next to your name.
  6. If your revision is URGENT, email a member of the Marketing & Communications Team.
  7. You will receive a confirmation when your revision is accepted. We will review all revisions within 24 hours.

Adding a new page

To add a new page or section to the site, we ask that you email someone on the Marketing and Communications Team, and we will add a draft page for you.

Adding a calendar event

Adding an event to the College’s Trumba Calendar is not managed through WordPress. If you have an event you’d like to see on the calendar, email coenvcal@uw.edu.