The Saint Martin's University Website Policy

Saint Martin's University website mission statement
The Saint Martin's University website is an official publication of the University. Its mission is to promote the University and provide accurate, up-to-date information about it in an accessible and attractive manner to audiences inside and outside the Saint Martin's community. A website committee, under the auspices of the University's Office of Communication and Office of Institutional Technology, will be responsible for setting policies governing the nature, content, format, maintenance, timeliness and ownership of information contained on the official pages of the Saint Martin's University web site.

Philosophy
The Saint Martin's University website is an invaluable tool that offers many new opportunities for communicating information about Saint Martin's to a worldwide audience. It is a large, complex, all-encompassing site, a virtual reflection of our University community and its Benedictine heritage. The University's Website Committee expects this new medium to represent Saint Martin's University, its mission and its character, just as other Saint Martin's publications strive to do. Because of its potential importance in building Saint Martin's future and its newness as a means for communicating with the public, guidelines that will help achieve these aims have been developed and will continue to be developed as necessary.

Website Structure
Pages within the web site will be designated by the Office of Communication as either official (University) or personal sites.

  1. Official University Web Pages
    Official pages represent the University and its offices, divisions and departments, to the University's various audiences: potential students, current students, employees, friends, visitors and casual visitors. Official pages must conform to the design styles adopted by the committee to give the site unity, coherence, functionality and readability.
    • The contents of all official pages must reside on the Saint Martin's University server.
    • All official pages will be built using template pages supplied through the web administrator/Office of Communication and will be maintained and regularly updated by the University offices or departments responsible for them. The Office of Communication will be responsible for all-University information such as campus tours, maps, history, etc.
    • Each official page within the Saint Martin's University web site will be readily identifiable as a part of its site by the use of the University logo or logotype, a specific palette of colors and specific typefaces.
    • Each official page will carry the email address of the department or office responsible for its upkeep. Each web assistant will be responsible for checking that email and responding.
    • Text on official pages will conform to AP Style Guide and to the University's usage, as listed in the Saint Martin's University Style Guide.
    • Official pages will be accurate, well-written, concise, free of spelling and grammatical errors and will otherwise present the University, its mission and values in a positive light.
    • Academic departments will carry navigational links to each of its faculty member's home pages or to the email addresses and office telephone numbers of those faculty members who choose not to have a home page.
    • All official pages will be regularly monitored by the web administrator to ascertain that material is current. Those with outdated materials will be notified to update their page or remove the outdated material within five working days.
  2. Personal web pages
    Personal pages are the home pages of any faculty, staff, student or monastic member of the Saint Martin's community. In addition, organizations affiliated with or supporting the University, but not directly a part of the University, also will have space for web pages. These include all student clubs, Saint Martin's Abbey, Saint Martin's Alumni Association, Saint Martin's Athletic Foundation and other organizations that need not be governed by the software, editorial and style parameters established for the University's official pages. However, space on this resource is a privilege, and all users are expected to follow established website policy.
    • Personal pages will carry navigational links to the University's home page, the author's name, how to contact them (either an email address, a telephone number or both) and the most recent date of the page's modification.
    • Personal pages will be governed by the Saint Martin's University Acceptable Use Policy and all other applicable policies of the University. (Examples: University policies concerning sexual harassment and hate crimes/incidents). Anyone violating University policy on a web page will be subject to the appropriate disciplinary actions described in the relevant policy.
    • Personal web pages may not violate copyright, libel, obscenity or other local, state or federal laws.
    • Personal web pages may not be used for commercial uses, sales or money-making ventures except those authorized by the University administration.
    • On the academic side, official University pages extends to specific academic program and course information. Course syllabi, because of their individual nature, will be contained on the home pages of faculty members.
    • The website will carry a "limitation of liability" page to cover the University from liability for materials carried on the personal pages.
    • Any personal page on the University site that violates University policies may be removed from the website immediately by the web administrator in consultation with the Office of Communication and/or the Office of Institutional Technology.
    • In order to be given the privilege of a personal page, the author must sign a form agreeing to comply with the University's Website Policy.

Web Authoring of Official Pages

  1. One person will be designated by each academic or staff unit to be ultimately responsible for the pages pertaining to it. This person will be designated as a "web assistant." Other employees within the academic or staff unit may help build, add to, maintain and/or update that unit's web pages, but the web assistant will be responsible for checking materials for their accuracy and conformance with web standards and for working with the web administrator prior to the materials publication on the site. Ultimate responsibility for the intellectual content of each section lies with the cabinet members responsible for each section. The Office of Communication will be responsible for building and maintaining all-University information.
  2. Website assistant positions are:
    Office of Admissions
    Athletics Department
    Bookstore
    Business and Economics Division
    Campus Life
    Office of Communication, two positions
    Conference Services And Facilities
    Offices of Development And Alumni Relations
    Education Division
    Engineering Division
    Finance Office (including offices of student accounts and Perkins loans)
    Humanities Division
    Human Resources
    International Student Services
    Library
    Extension Campuses
    Office of Institutional Technology, two positions
    Office of the President
    Office of the Registrar
    Saint Martin's Abbey
    Science And Mathematics Division
    Sodexho-Marriott Food Services
    Social Science Division
    Office of Student Services, two positions
    Office of Vice President Of Academic Affairs
    Web administrator assistants
    Floating "help" position, one or two positions
  3. All web assistants must be employed by the University as members of the faculty or staff. Web assistants may not be students, alumni, volunteers or hired professionals, although people in any of these categories may help the web assistant with his or her task.
  4. Those appointed as "web assistants" will be provided with appropriate software, hardware and workshop training, as well as individual assistance in mastering software and style for the website.
  5. Web assistants may choose from a selection of official University templates, colors and photos for composing pages representing their office(s) or department(s). These will be stored in a website library maintained by the Office of Communication.
  6. All web pages for the University's official pages will be constructed in Microsoft FrontPage software to eliminate compatibility problems and to enable those working within the site to check, change and maintain hyperlinks more easily.
  7. All slightly changed or updated material for official pages will be reviewed prior to publication by the web administrator. All new or substantially changed official material will be reviewed by both the web administrator and the Office of Communication prior to publication on the University website.

Graphic Elements and Photographs on Official Pages

Official pages within the University's website have been designed with several factors in mind, the chief ones being building/maintaining the University's mission/image, keeping the site easy to maintain/repair, making the site accessible to those viewers without state-of-the-art Internet access, and striving to make the site accessible to persons with disabilities. With these factors in mind, the following graphic standards have been developed:

  1. Graphics will be limited in size to no larger than 75 kb, with 50 kb or less recommended.
  2. Graphics to be used will be saved as .gif or .jpeg files.
  3. Only colors within the designated color palette will be used for graphic images.
  4. With the exception of hyperlinks, all body text (text not used in graphic images) will be black.
  5. No moving, blinking or flashing objects will be used on the official pages without prior approval by the Office of Communication.
  6. The official Saint Martin's University logo/logotype will be used only on official University pages and is not to be changed in any way.
  7. Graphics and photographs will be chosen to enhance the informational content of the page.
  8. The Office of Communication will be responsible for maintaining an approved library of graphic elements and photographs for use by web assistants on the official template pages. Web assistants who have photos other than those in the file they wish to use can bring them to the office for approval and scanning. The office also will approve new graphics or help assistants develop new graphics as necessary for addition to the website library.

Use of Interactive Features and sound

  1. Interactive features will not be used on the website's official pages without prior approval from the web administrator and a plan for periodically updating the material contained in them.
  2. No sounds may be embedded on official pages.

Layout

  1. Frames will not be used on any official page.
  2. Nested tables will not be used on any official page.

Approval Process for New and Changed Materials on the Official Website

Materials will be developed, changed and tested on the developmental web server, a test site that will enable web assistants to complete their work prior to its publication on the University's public server.
All new, changed or updated materials to official University pages then will be reviewed prior to publication on the University website by the web administrator. If the material is new or substantially changed, it also will be reviewed by the Office of Communication. The review process will check for text style and accuracy, conformance with design standards and technical function. The web administrator or Office of Communication may edit textual and design elements to bring them in line with established style and professional standards used in other official Saint Martin's University publications. Alternatively, the material may be returned to the web assistant for additional work if necessary. When the material is approved by the web administrator and, if necessary, by the Office of Communication, it will be published on the official website.

Priorities of Service

The web administrator and his/her staff will operate under a priority system similar to that governing the Office of Communication, as established by the University cabinet.

  1. Admissions online materials will receive first priority.
  2. All-University materials will receive second priority.
  3. Materials for individual offices and academic departments will be third priority. Because of limited resources, web assistants needing help with any phase of their work or pre-publication review will be helped on a first-come, first-served basis, by appointment.
  4. Help with personal web page development will be the fourth priority. Served first will be faculty, when class materials are involved, then staff, then students and student groups.

Website Access and Responsibility for Protecting Website Security

  1. A system of permissions will be adopted and used to protect the security of the University website.
  2. Those with full permissions to administer the site will be limited and will be designated by the Office of Institutional Technology as necessary to maintain the site. The web administrator and staff, Office of Communication staff and the Office of Institutional Technology staff may be the only employees with full permission to the official University website.
  3. Permissions for web assistants will be limited to their areas of responsibility on the website. Permissions to author on the site will be given by the web administrator.
  4. All employees with full or limited permissions to the University website are responsible for taking all reasonable precautions to protect the both the public and developmental website areas from vandalism, hacking and accidental alteration. This includes not sharing computer account information or passwords with others at the University and carefully monitoring access to personal computers in shared work areas.
  5. Outside consultants must be approved by the director of communication and the web administrator. Each consultant must sign the University's Acceptable Use Policy for computers.

University Website Committee Responsibilities

  1. The University Website Committee will be responsible for overseeing, interpreting and revising current website policy.
  2. The University Website Committee will be responsible for adding new policy necessary to respond to new technology or emerging issues pertaining to website operation in general or to the University website in particular.
  3. The committee will meet as necessary to resolve any questions, problems or grievances concerning website policy, management or other issues that may arise concerning the website's maintenance and operation. If deemed necessary, the committee will ask for the guidance or instruction of the University cabinet in resolving an issue of importance.

Grievance Procedure

  1. Issues or grievances may be brought to the website committee for resolution by contacting either co-chair or the web administrator.
  2. The committee member contacted will be responsible for calling a meeting within two weeks and sharing the individual's concern with the committee. The individual with the concern may choose to present his/her issue to the committee for discussion and/or resolution or to have it presented to the group by another party.
  3. The committee will discuss the matter before it, then decide on an appropriate course of action to address the issue or concern, if necessary.
  4. If expedient, the issue may be tabled for a reasonable time pending further research and study by the committee.
  5. If the committee decides it cannot resolve a grievance or problem, or, in the case of a conflict of interest, is not the appropriate body to resolve the grievance, it may refer the issue to the University cabinet for resolution.

Approved by the
University Website Committee
October 29, 1999

Click here to download a Word document of the Policy