Required Elements

Context Navigation

  • Visitors must be able see how they reached a particular point so that they can:
    • understand a site's architecture, and
    • get back to where they came from if they make a "wrong turn."
  • This can be accomplished via a hierarchical navigation menu or breadcrumb navigation.
    • Hierarchical navigation shows the site's structure as you're viewing pages and allows you to circle back to where you originated from.  The most common way this is accomplished is though a left-justified collapsible menu.
    • Breadcrumb navigation must be presented in a consistent manner: links shown left to right in a single line (if possible), above the main content. It must include a minimum of two levels above the current page (if applicable), including the page's immediate parent.

University Logo and Link to Northwestern University Home Page

  • The University's logo is composed of two parts: the University seal and the words "Northwestern University" used as a single unit in a specific font.
  • The logo must appear at the top left or bottom left of every page. The logo must always link back to the Northwestern University home page.
  • Do not use multiple Northwestern University logos on a single page.
  • The logo and its background must be a high-contrast combination.
  • View the University's Logo Guidelines for more information.
Northwestern University Logo

Only logo versions available from University Relations are to be used on University web sites. Download a high-quality version of the University logo.

  • The logo is available in three colors: one for a purple background, one for a white background, and black.
  • If you are using a different background color, please contact the Office of Web Communications (847-467-4747) to have the logo custom designed.
  • Do not alter the logos provided; the logo must not be overlapped, cropped, or distorted.
  • It must have at least 20 pixels of "breathing room" on each side and 10 pixels at the top.
  • The downloadable versions are already set with the appropriate boundaries and should be set flush to the left and top.
  • If you wish to display the logo in the footer, see the Standard Footer section (below).

Unit Logo

If you have your own logo and would like to incorporate it into your page with the required Northwestern logo:

  • If the Northwestern logo is in the header, the unit logo may appear to the right of the Northwestern logo or at the lower left in the footer.
  • If both the Northwestern logo and the unit logo are in the footer, the Northwestern logo must appear to the left, the unit logo to the right, with center-aligned text for the body of the footer.

Standard Footer

See How-to's for example and implementation instructions.

  • A textual footer provides a means of navigation for visually impaired visitors who use text readers. It also provides a consistent connection with the University's top-level pages and its legal requirements.
  • Footer must contain the following links:
    • Contact Northwestern University
    • Disclaimer
    • Campus Emergency Information
    • University Policies
    • Mobile
  • Footer must include departmental address, phone number, fax number (if applicable), and a departmental e-mail address.
  • In addition, if your navigation is not accessible for any reason, you must provide links to the main sections of your site in the first line of the footer.

Title Tag

See How-to's for title implementation.

Title tags must exist on every single page.  Title tags should contain the unit name followed by "Northwestern University." The following format is highly recommended:

Page Title: Unit Title - Northwestern University

The title is one importent element for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For a full explanation on how this relates to SEO, see the Search Help FAQs.

University Search

See How-to's for search box implementation.

  • The University Search is required on all pages, except when there is a conflicting search function on the page (e.g. Jobs, Plan-It Purple). In the case of a conflicting search function, a link to the Northwestern Search must be provided on the page.
  • The search function must search the top-level Northwestern site and also be configured to search the site the page is located on, unless the site consists of a single page.