This introductory document is designed to train departmental webmasters, faculty, and staff on WordPress, a content management system (CMS) for approved uses within the University of Arkansas system.
Instruction includes an introduction to the functions of the site dashboard as well as training for building pages and uploading content.
- WordPress login
- User dashboard overview
- Introduction to template layout
- Content creation/management (hands-on)
If the regularly scheduled training sessions do not fit with your schedule you may request a coordinated training session for this course by contacting the WordPress team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) for the University of Arkansas. The use of WordPress for official University websites is restricted to the uses outlined below. Exceptions can be made with a reasonable use case that requires WordPress. Conference and micro-sites have a life span of one year or less, unless approved otherwise through the Office of University Relations.
- blogs and e-publications
- marketing specific micro-sites
- outreach programs
- affinity groups
Navigate to wordpressua.uark.edu. At the top right corner, select “Login”
Login with your UARK login and password.
When you login, find your sites under “My sites” in the top menu bar. If you edit multiple sites, you may see a whole list, so be sure you have selected the site you would like to edit before you begin making changes.
To logout, just close your browser or logout at the top right under your name.
As you think about adding content to your site, we recommend you create an outline of the site first, to figure out what menu items you need and what information should go under each item. This will help make sure your site is well organized and the content is easy for users to find.
The site will have a URL that starts with wordpressua.uark.edu initially, and it is set so that only people listed as users can see it right now. After your site is complete, send an email to email@example.com. The site will be reviewed for content and accessibility. This process can take up to a week. Once it has been approved, we will put your URL in place.
Here are some of the things we consider when reviewing websites.
- Navigation and content makes sense
- Site works well and looks good on mobile devices
- All content is complete–no filler text
- All links work
- University of Arkansas affiliation clearly and appropriately identified
- Clear contact information and links to appropriate college and department in footer
- All menu items, links, and content areas are accessible through keyboard, without using the mouse
- Appropriate use of headings and bulleted lists
- Appropriate link text (no “click here”)
- Approved colors and text/color combinations (refer to the university’s color guide)
- All images have alt text
- Use of high-quality images (here is a guide to choosing images)
- Video/audio content has accurate captions or transcripts (here are instructions for adding captions to YouTube)
- All tables have captions
The back end of your site. Here you can access all of your site tools.
Posts are entries that display in reverse order on your home page and/or blog page. Posts usually have comment fields beneath them and are included in your site’s RSS feed.
Media consists of the images, video, recordings, and files that you upload and use in your blog. Media is typically uploaded and inserted into the content when writing a Post or writing a Page.
The Media Library Screen allows you to edit, view, and delete media previously uploaded to your blog. Multiple media objects can be selected for deletion. Search and filtering ability is also provided to allow you to find the desired media.
In Media Library Grid View, clicking an image thumbnail, audio icon or video icon will display an attachment details dialog, which allows you to preview media and make quick edits. Any changes you make to the attachment details will be automatically saved. You can also delete individual items and access the extended edit screen from the details dialog. There is where you add alt text to images for greater accessibility.
Pages are for content that isn’t specifically time-dependent, or which isn’t “blog content”. Pages can be organized into pages and subpages. It’s quite possible to make a website using WordPress which only contains pages.
Appearance (Theme Customizer, Menus, Widgets)
If you select Appearance -> Customize menu from the Administration Screens, the Theme Customizer is launched. The Customizer allows you to preview changes to your site before publishing them. By using the Customizer you will ensure that your modifications are preserved.
The Menu Screen enables user to create a custom menu (also known as navigation bar, navigation menu, or main menu). It is a section of the site which helps visitors to navigate in the site. Depending on the theme used, typically a site will have one navigation menu, while some themes may enable secondary or footer menus. It is essential to have a neat and simplified navigation menu, so as not to confuse your visitors.
Creating a New Menu
- Go to the WordPress Dashboard.
- From the ‘Appearance’ menu on the left-hand side of the Dashboard, select the ‘Menus’ option to bring up the Menu Editor.
- Select Create a new menu at the top of the page
- Enter a name for your new menu in the Menu Name box
- Click the Create Menu button.
Adding Items to menu
You can add different item types into your menu, such as Pages, Categories, or even Custom Links. These are split between panes left of the menu you’re currently editing. An example on how to add link to a page:
- Locate the pane entitled Pages.
- Within this pane, select the View All link to bring up a list of all the currently published Pages on your site.
- Select the Pages that you want to add by clicking the checkbox next to each Page’s title.
- Click the Add to Menu button located at the bottom of this pane to add your selection(s) to the menu that you created in the previous step.
- Click the Save Menu button once you’ve added all the menu items you want. Your custom menu has now been saved.
Note: The Screen Options allow you to choose which items you can use to add to a menu. Certain items, like Tags are hidden by default.
Editing Footer Widgets
To edit footer widgets, go to Appearance > Widgets in the left hand of the dashboard.
On the left hand of the screen, you can see all of the widgets that are available for you, including text (a quick way to add your contact information), recent posts, an image widget, and more.
On the right hand of the screen, you can see all the places that you can add widgets. Footers can be divided into up to six columns in which you can place a footer widget and a sidebar. To add a footer widget to any of these locations, simply drag your widget into your target area and fill it out to populate it with content.
There are four roles that you can assign to people who you want to add to your site: Administrator, Editor, Author, and Contributor.
Administrator: An administrator has full and complete ownership of a website, and can do absolutely everything. This person has complete power over posts/pages, comments, settings, themes, plugins, import, users – everything. Nothing is off-limits, including deleting everything.
Editor: An editor can view, edit, publish, and delete any posts/pages, moderate comments, manage categories, manage tags, manage links and upload files/images.
Author: An author can edit, publish and delete their posts, as well as upload files/images.
Contributor: A contributor can edit their posts but cannot publish them. When a contributor creates a post, it will need to be submitted to an administrator for review. Once a contributor’s post is approved by an administrator and published, however, it may no longer be edited by the contributor. A contributor does not have the ability to upload files/images.
Subscriber: In your comment settings, if you’ve selected “Users must be registered and logged in to comment”, once they have created an account, they will be given subscriber role. Subscribers only have the ability to leave comments.
If you’re an Administrator and you’d like to make someone a Contributor, Author, or Editor on your site, go to Users → Add New. Fill in the required info, choose a password for them, check the box “Send this password to the new user by email” and select the role you wish to give them using the dropdown. Your new user can login with their UARK username and password. If your user is still unable to login, please contact us so that we can add them to the network.
Changing User Roles
As an Administrator of a site, you can change other users’ roles. First head to Users → All Users in your WordPress admin. Check the box(es) next to user avatar(s). Using Change role to… dropdown menu, select the new user role(s) you want to assign. Click Change.
The Divi Builder
In the Divi builder, each page/post is comprised of sections, rows, and columns where you can place modules (modules hold your content.) Sections are coded blue, Fullwidth sections are coded purple, rows are green, and modules are grey. To add a new section, select the blue plus sign, to add a new row, select the green plus sign. To add a new module select the grey plus sign.
To add columns, select the vertically lined square on any row (green).
The color coding may seem redundant on the back end of your site, but are very helpful when editing your site via the visual builder, the front end editing tool. In the visual builder you can click and begin typing anywhere that text is already present or you can hover and select a gear icon to adjust the settings on any module.
To save any changes that you make, select the purple circle at the bottom of the screen. This will open several options. On the right will appear a save button. Be sure to save before you navigate way from the page!
We hope this information has been helpful to you! If you would like to keep a copy of this training for your records, download the WordPress 101 PDF.
WordPress On-Campus Assistance:
You are welcome to set up a training session with a member of our team on campus at your convenience. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.