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Required Elements

It's highly recommended that university sites not falling under a particular school use the departmental templates (NetID Required). To request a Cascade or NUSites site using the templates, contact OGMC Digital.

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-column 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. Breadcrumbs must include a minimum of two levels above the current page, if applicable, including the page's immediate parent.

Standard Footer

Title Tag

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 important element for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For more about how the title and other format elements contribute to SEO, see Optimizing Your Content for Search.

University Search

See developer resources for search box implementation.

  • The University Search form is required on all pages, except when there is a conflicting search function on the page (for example: PlanIt Purple). In the case of a conflicting search function, a link to the Northwestern Search must be provided on the page.
  • The search form should search the site the page is located on, unless the site consists of a single page or is password-protected.