What is Wayfinder?
Wayfinder is the UGS site where first year and transfer students can explore the majors, minors, and certificates offered at UT all on one platform. It also has tools to help students explore potential career paths, and has an announcement section that helps students keep up with open classes during registration, events from academic departments, and jobs on campus.
Part of the role of the GA is to update the announcements section on Wayfinder. Announcements can include information about academic programs (UTNY, UTLA, WEILD, etc.), applying to different majors or minors, events put on by academic departments, open jobs on campus, or classes with open seats during registration periods. Sign up for the Academic Counselors Association listserv to be updated about all of those items. Announcements should be made once to three times a week, depending on the time in the semester and the number of things going on at UT. Sometimes, certain weeks will have a lot of potential announcements, so you might need to find a way to space out the information over the course of the next couple weeks.
To make an announcement, sign into the backend of Wayfinder. On the far left menu, go to entries, and then in the next menu over scroll to announcements. Then click at the top where it says “New Entry”.
Tips for the announcements:
- Academic Counselors Association emails are often written for advisors, so try to rephrase things so it sounds like it’s being written for students. Informal language is great! Look at past blog posts to get a sense of what folks have done in the past
- Be sure to link to the Wayfinder page of whatever you are promoting! It’s also great to use the college/school/units link throughout the post
- Photos are great! Either the ones that are included in the email, something you find on their website, or if all else fails, search google images for something that is in the public domain or copyright free
- Use HTML to add bolding, italics, links, and lists to your blog post! There is a section on this below
Another part of the job of the GA is to maintain the Wayfinder Twitter account. Each day that the GA works, they should either tweet original content or retweet from a UT resource. The easiest way to find UT resources to retweet is by signing into the Wayfinder Twitter via Tweetdeck, where you’ll find a section for those resources. Original content can include information about things happening at UT, or making a tweet about an announcement you made and link to the announcement. This can best be done by using the UGS Bitly account (username CompassPoints password: MAI 206). Using hashtags or tagging other departments can help to get more engagement. Also feel free to make it fun and lighthearted! Informal language is welcome, as are GIFs, polls, etc.
For announcements and tweets, best practice is to add an image description. This is to make sure that all content on the page is accessible to as many people as possible. On the announcements, image descriptions can go in italics at the top. On Twitter, when you add an image to the tweet there will be a grey box that says “add description.” Click the box and put the image description there.
There are a lot of elements that go into writing a good image description, and it might take some practice. Here are some general tips and tricks to writing a useful image description.
HTML/Craft CMS language
- I WANT TO BOLD some words
- <b>I WANT TO BOLD</b> some words
- I WANT TO ITALICIZE some words
- <i>I WANT TO ITALICIZE</i> some words
- I want to create a link to Wayfinder
- I want to create <a href=”http://www.wayfinder.utexas.edu”>a link to Wayfinder</a>
- The Wayfinder backend also can create links by doing this: I want to create a [link to Wayfinder](http://www.wayfinder.utexas.edu). This is the Craft language so it will NOT work on Drupal
- For example, a bulleted list of Fruits
- Line Breaks
Are on different lines
use . . .
Are on different lines
Wayfinder content updates
Vick Center staff, in particular Haleemah Shajira (firstname.lastname@example.org), will take care of updating major, minor, and certificate content. Typically, this is done in the summer, by reaching out to all of the faculty who oversee the programs and having them take a look at the Wayfinder pages and see if there are any edits that need to be made. For reference or if Vick staff have questions, you can find a full set of instructions here.
What is Drupal?
Drupal is the content management system (CMS) that the staff use to edit the UGS website. Staff will send their desired edits to us through the UGS CMS Admin listserv, and we can publish their edits by reading the draft, ensuring that it follows all the style guidelines, and then going over to the moderate tab and publishing. You can sign in to Drupal with your EID and password. There is also a Drupal Cheat Sheet page that has some tips and tricks for making edits.
Drupal primarily uses Textile to format text. Looking at the drafts of other pages can be helpful in learning the syntax. Below is a list of some of the things you will use most often.
- “Your text”:www.link.com
- Bullet points
- * bulleted text here
- Primary heading text, h2. Secondary heading text, etc.
- *Bolded text here.*
- _Italicized text here_
Any images need to be uploaded on the “File Download” section of the child pages, and may not upload well if there are spaces or underscores in the image name. Images also need to be under 2MB and sized appropriately to upload. You can find more information about various photo sizes to use here.
What are the staff and student profiles?
Staff and student profiles are done at a few junctures throughout the year for the UGS website. The student profiles give insight into student experiences with a variety of UGS programs, and the staff profiles often serve the purpose of letting students know that staff may not have had a particularly linear path to their career, and therefore that it’s ok to be starting out in UGS. Generally what will happen is that Alan will send you a list of people to contact for profiles, and then you can reach out to them to set up an in person or virtual interview. You will conduct the interview, and then refer them to Trent for a photo. Here are some examples of a completed student profile to take a look at!
Questions for student profiles
The questions for student profiles often involve asking students about their name, pronouns, major (if they have one), and their experiences with the program they’re talking about (e.g. their favorite parts, would they recommend the program, how has it helped them develop as a student or choose a major or career path, advice for new students, etc.).
Questions for staff profiles
Staff profiles involve asking the staff member about their current role, what they thought they were going to go into their first year of college, their favorite parts about working in UGS, what advice they’d give to a new UGS student, and other such questions.
If the interviews for profiles are being done virtually, and if the interviewee is comfortable with it, it can be helpful to record the interview so that you can transcribe quotes more exactly later. Profiles should be about 300-500 words, two-ish paragraphs, with at least a direct quote or two per paragraph. It helped me to start with the person’s experience in the first paragraph, then move on to if they would recommend the program, their advice to new students, and other such topics in the second paragraph.
You’ll log your hours in Workday, which can be accessed via your EID and password. On the homepage click “Time” and then you can direct yourself to the week you are logging time for. Click on a calendar day, and then enter your start and leaving time for that day. Then go to review, and then submit, and then your hours will be sent in for approval. Timesheets are due twice a month, usually close to the 1st and 15th of the month.
The Communications Wiki has a broad array of information to help with how to do various functions of the role, and is a great first place to look if you are stuck on how to do a certain task. Below is a quick summary of what is in each section so you can find what you are looking for quickly.
- Design Guidelines
- Information about fonts, image formatting, color palette, etc.
- UGS Web Content and Style Guide
- Information about formatting such as heading, standardized use of acronyms and capitalization, and other tips for making pages uniform
- Templates for making digital ads and nametags
- How to Advertise Your Event on Campus
- Information on where and how campus events can be advertised
- Digital Screens
- How to have an event advertised on one of the digital screens around campus
- Design Project Request Forms
- Information on how staff members can request designs for department events, brochures, etc.
- Video & Photography Request Form
- Information on how staff can get assistance with a video project
- Website Request Form
- Places for staff to request large scale overhauls of their sites within UGS
- Digital Images Explained
- Explanations of different types of image files, image resolution, and related topics.
- Drupal Cheat Sheet
- Logging in to Drupal, formatting in Drupal, etc.
- News Schedule & Archive
- Old news articles and information about writing new ones
- Information about planning events, particularly around vendors, expense forms, and hiring independent contractors
- Social Media
- Links to all the social media accounts within UGS
- New Site Map
- Archived map of UGS website
- Site Map (Current UGS Website)
- Current map of UGS website
- UGS Liaisons
- Information on communicating with students for UGS liaisons
- Photo Dimensions for the UGS Site
- Photo formatting needs for UGS website
- How to use Eloqua, the email marketing tool
- Web Analytics
- How to do web analytics and have an idea of user behavior on UGS site
- Home Recording Best Practices
- Tips for recording a video over zoom/working from home if you will be recording a video yourself