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Access and Training

Access to the web system requires attending a basic training session. Logins are are assigned once a trainee registers for a session.


Basic training signup

System Login

For best results on the Web Content Management System  (CMS), use a Chrome, Firefox or Safari web browser.


Web CMS login

Each piece of content in the Web CMS is called a Node. You can add new content by selecting Add new content at the top of a Nodes list:.

Add new content screenshot

This will display a page listing the available content types. Clicking the name of a content type will take editors to the creation page for that type.

Below are the most commonly used content types in all groups. Click on each to display details

Articles are news or blog items that can be used to populate feeds. They employ category tags that can group them in various combinations. 

  • Title: This is a required field. The title will be displayed at the top of the article and be used in URL creation. As such, please keep all titles to alphanumeric characters and hyphens. While special characters can be used, they require encoding within a URL to work correctly and should be used only when necessary.
  • Author: Optional
  • Publication Date: This is a required field. If left to the default value, the article will publish as soon as the created content is saved. If the article should publish as a specific time and date, these values should be edited to reflect that.
  • Expiration Date: If articles should exist indefinitely, these fields should remain blank. Only use the expiration date fields if an article should no longer appear within a news feed or news archive after a certain date.
  • Teaser Image: If this view is set for your website, go ahead and upload a small image. This will be displayed in the listing of articles with the article abstract.
  • Image: If an image is uploaded here, it will display at the top of the news article when viewing it online.
  • Image Caption (optional): This will display text beneath your image.
  • Body: This is the main content of your story. You can type your content in directly to the CK editor or copy and paste from another source. For assistance utilizing the editor features, see Text Editor Interface.
  • Tags: Choosing a tag will send this story to the section of your website designed to receive this story. More than one tag may be selected by holding the Ctrl key and clicking on desired tags.
  • Compass Terms: This should remain blank as Compass Articles will be handled at a later date.
  • Abstract: You can leave this field blank and Drupal will choose the first 155 characters from your story, or you can fill this in and create a short reason for people to click on this story and read it.
  • Article Link Text: Default text is  "Read More." Use key words here to describe where your visitors are going, and to assist those using screen readers who may be navigating this page using links.
  • In the right column, open the Display Settings tab. Set the View mode to Full content.
  • Choose a "Save Option"

Go to a PowerPoint document detailing how to work with Basic Pages [OHIO ID required]

To create a basic page, click on "Nodes" and you'll see a list of all available nodes in your group. Choose "Create Node" then choose "Basic Page" in the list of content types.

  • Title: This is a required field. The title will be displayed at the top of the main content area and be used to generate the URL. Use care when creating page titles and be sure the title represents the content and uses key words. Keep them short and to the point. While special characters can be used, they require encoding within a URL to work correctly and should be used only when necessary.
  • Body: This is where you add the main content for this page. For assistance utilizing the editor features, see Text Editor Interface.
  • Menu Settings: It is possible to add the page you are working on to the navigation from edit version of the page. It is also common to make those changes in the navigation editing environment as well. Either way, it is recommended that you select a menu parent even if this node is not meant to show within a menu.
    • The node's position within the menu dictates what its final URL will be when published. This allows quick and easy reorganization of URLs. Keep in mind that the URL will update automatically within menus, but does not automatically update if linked to within content.
    • On the right side of the edit page, within the Advanced Options block, is an open panel labeled "Menu Settings". Based upon previous selections you will see different options available.


  • Below the "Show navigation" checkbox is a drop down that contains all the navigations this page could be added to or display. All unique navigation collections are labeled with their base URLs, either "Left" for left navigations or "Top" for top navigations, and gray backgrounds



  • The item you select will update the node's final URL when saved. Examples:
    • Selecting "" as the parent will place this node within the top level of that navigation and the resulting URL will be /finance/purchasing/page-name
    • Selecting "---- Contract and Insurance Matrix" (whose URL is /finance/purchasing/contract-and-insurance-matrix) will place this node as a child of the selected and the resulting URL will be /finance/purchasing/contract-and-insurance-matrix/page-name
  • Once a parent item has be selected, you will be presented with another option for enabling this node within the navigation:


Checking "Enabled" will show this node on the navigation. Unchecking will not display this node, but will still use the parent you selected when updating its URL path. You can enable and disable nodes, later, by either visiting the node directly, checking "Enabled", and saving or by going to the menu and checking "Enabled" next to the disabled node. Be sure to save the menu after doing this or the change will not stick.

Selecting a navigation should only need to be done once. If you ever need to reselect a navigation parent on a previously published node, please contact Web Services because this should never happen.


  • Category: This acts as the title for the page if an FAQ is on its own page. If multiple FAQs are embedded on a page, this will act as the pages section header. This should be descriptive of the type of FAQ (e.g., BobcatBUY FAQs, Concur FAQs, PCard FAQs, etc.)
  • Body: Text placed here will show above the questions and answers. Use this to describe the category or give instructions to the user.

Questions Section

  • Question: Text placed here will be displayed when the page loads. This is where you type in questions that reoccur from your key audiences.
  • Answer: Answer text will be hidden when the page loads. Users will have to click on the corresponding question text to see the answer. Answers can be formatted using the Text Editor Interface.
  • Add Question and Answer: Use this button to add additional Question and Answer sections. One will be added at a time. You can click and drag the questions and answers to the desired order.
  • Display Settings: In the right column, this dropdown determines styling of the FAQ. Choose Default or Category. A preview of each will appear below the dropdown. 
  • Choose a "Save As" option.

Go to a PowerPoint presentation detailing the elements of a Profile [OHIO ID required]

Staff listing pages are composed of collections of individual Profiles. Updating a Profile makes corresponding change to every staff listing in that group displaying it. 

While the list of fields in a group's Profiles can vary, here are the most common:

  • Display Name: This is a required field and will be the name that appears within the staff listing.
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Image: Upload images according to your website's design.
  • Title: Enter the staff member's position at the University
  • Department: Select the office most associated with the staff member. This will tell the Web CMS where to show the staff member in staff listings so be sure to select the correct department.
  • OHIO ID: Input the staff member's OHIO ID. This is the first portion of their OHIO email address. For instance, if their email is lastname@ohio.edu, then their OHIO ID would be lastname.
  • Email: Input the staff member's OHIO email address.
  • Office Phone: Enter up to two work numbers for the staff member.
  • Website
  • Office Address
  • Bio: This is an optional field. If text is entered, it will appear when a staff member's name is clicked within a staff listing page.
  • Link to Full Profile: If a Bio is entered, check this box to create a link to the bio from the staff listing page. If no Bio is entered, leave this box unchecked.
  • Sort Ranking: This determines the order in which profiles appear in a listing of profiles. The higher the number, the higher in the list the profile will appear. For example, a department head should have a ranking of 9 in order to appear at the top of the list. If you are unsure about this, leave it at the default value of 5.
  • Choose a "Save As" option

Two Ways to Open Content for Editing


From a nodes list, select Edit node:  

Edit node screenshot



From the story view, select Edit from the task menu at the bottom of the page.


Once logged in and on the group page, click on Nodes within the tabbed menu. Editors should now see all currently created content within their group. The drop down menus above the content listing allows editors to filter items based on two categories:

  • Published status
  • (Content) Type

In addition, the content listing is within a sortable table. Editors can click on the column header for Title, Content type, or Updated to sort the listing by that category. This makes it easy to group content types together or to see the most recently updated page.

In general, there are two ways to edit content:

  • Click Edit node in the row of the piece of content you want to edit. This will take you directly to the editing window.


  • Click the title of the piece of content you want to edit. Then, while viewing the piece of content, select Edit from the task menu at the bottom of the page.



When editing text within a content type, editors will be able to use a text editor with a toolbar containing common editing options. This toolbar contains numerous options, many similar to those found in other text editors in software like Microsoft Word. Here are a few common icons: 


Remove format – removes formatting from the highlighted text

  • If content is pasted using a method other than Paste as plain text, this should be used to clean the extra formatting from the pasted content.


Link – creates a hyperlink

  • A URL may be entered to link to another page
    • If the desired page is within the Ohio University website, only the portion of the URL after .edu needs entered. For example, to link to https://www.ohio.edu/finance, only /finance would need entered into the input box.
  • If the page is outside the University website, enter the entire URL, starting with http:// or https://.
  • To link to a document, click Open File Browser, or use the File Manager  button. This will open a file explorer where editors can upload or select the desired document. More information is available in Working with Documents.
    • Before adding a link to a document, be sure your highlighted text includes a reference to the type of file being linked to (e.g., [PDF] or [Excel]).

Note: The Hyperlink Text should be highlighted prior to using the Link button.


Media – upload and insert images. For more information, see Working with Images.


Video Embed – inserts a video

  • Video URLs should be from YouTube, use the URL from the "Share" option on YouTube
  • Leave the default settings (Autoplay should be unchecked and Responsive Video should be checked)

After making an update but before selecting the Save button, content managers need to make a decision about what will happen next. Options within this drop-down include:

  • Draft: When a web page (node) is saved as “draft,” the page is saved in Drupal but the page is not visible to the public. The node is only visible at the webcms link after logging into Drupal. Users may edit a draft node, or save it as “needs review” or “published,” depending on the status of the content and if it is ready to be publicly shared. 
  • Needs Review: A node may be saved as “needs review” when content is waiting for approval before being published. Users may view the node at the webcms link after logging into Drupal, but the content will not be publicly visible in this state either. Also, when a node is at “needs review” status, users in the Editor role are prevented from modifying content until the node state returns to either “draft” or “published.” 
  • Publish: When a node is saved as “published,” it is publicly visible from the www.ohio.edu link. Users can update a published node and save the node as a draft or “needs review” if the changes need to be approved before being publicly visible. In this case, the edited (but-not-yet-live) version can be accessed through the Drupal node editor. (Available only to Publishers.)
  • Archived: When a node is saved as “archived,” it will not be visible to the public. Users can archive a published node to pull it down from the website. Anyone that visits the link for the page will receive a 404 error in their internet browser. If you need to bring an archived page back onto the website, you can save it as “published” and it will be visible again and able to be edited. (Available only to Publishers.)

Best Practices for Images

Key things to keep in mind:

  • In general, images should be the smallest file size possible without degrading quality.
  • Images should be saved at 72 DPI (Dots Per Inch). This the optimal for displaying while keeping a low file size.
  • Images should be cropped to the size needed to fit into the space on the page. Once again, this will help reduce overall file size.
  • Be sure when you change this size of an image you preserve the aspect ratio.
  • Images can easily be made smaller, but generally not larger. Start with the largest image you can and make it smaller for best results.
  • If you are using a large background image, be cognizant about anything else on the page that can slow down your website.
  • Text created on images will not show up in search results.
  • Be sure you have permission from subjects and the right to use any image you upload to the web.

Please don't:

  • Upload images of signatures
  • Upload personal images to a university website
  • Upload images that contain sensitive data (i.e., credit card numbers, SSN, grades, etc.)

While working on a page, place the cursor where you want your image to appear. In the editor toolbar, click the media icon:


This will open a window displaying the most recent images uploaded. Editors can insert keywords into the Media name text box and click Apply to search for images. To use one of the items found in the search

  • Click once to select it. This will overlay a checkmark on the image:


  • Next, click the Select media button below the displayed images.
  • In the next window, leave Image style and Link image to as their default options. Change Align to the option that best fits your content. This will align the image to the left, center, or right of any text near it.
  • Click Embed to add the image to your page.
  • If you would rather upload your own image instead, follow these steps once the Media window is displayed:

  • Click the Add images tab at the top of the widow


  • Click Select files to navigate your computer for the desired image. (Alternatively, drag and drop functionality works and the image can be dragged from your computer to the box in the Media module.)

  • Once an image is uploaded, the window will display Media name and Alternative text fields.

  • Input a name for the image in the Media name field. This will be the name that displays as others search for images within the Media module. You want it to be descriptive enough that when searching for keywords, the item will be found

  • Input a description in the Alternative text field. This is the text that will be used by screen readers and search engines to describe the image when it cannot be viewed.

  • Click Select images once all fields are filled

  • In the next window, leave Image style and Link image to as their default options. Change Align to the option that best fits your content. This will align the image to the left, center, or right of any text near it.

  • Click Embed to add the image to your page.

Video files should not be uploaded directly in the the Web CMS. They should be uploaded to YouTube or a similar platform and shared from there. Here's how to then embed the video on your web page:

  • In YouTube, click Share option on video you want to embed on web page. Copy URL. 
  • In Web CMS, on a basic or modular page, open Content Text Editor and place cursor where video is to be embedded. (Delete existing video by selecting it and clicking keyboard Delete button.) 
  • In text-editing toolbar, click Video Embed icon:
Video embed icon
  • Paste video link in Video URL field and click Save.

Ohio University faculty, staff and students can browse the extensive photo archive at ohiouniversity.photoshelter.com [OHIO ID required to download images].

Quick Guide to the Photo Archive

  1. Log in using your OHIO ID.
  2. Click on the Galleries tab found in the top menu bar.
  3. From here, you can navigate through folders and collections or search by keyword through the search bar in the upper right corner.
  4. Keywords can include things like Division of Student Affairs, Campus Recreation, students, fall, Baker University Center, ballroom, Career Fairs.
  5. Select a photo to see the date it was shot, the caption (I/A), the filename and the photographer to credit (I/A).
  6. To download an image, click on the download icon in the lower right corner and choose a download size ("Medium" recommended for most web uses).

The help guide linked below covers these link-related topics:

  • When and How to Set a Link to Open in a new Browser Tab/Window
  • Linking to Other Web Pages
  • Linking to Documents Stored in OneDrive
  • Linking to Documents Uploaded to Drupal Web CMS
  • Working With Links in Top/Side Navigation Menus
  • Creating Anchor Links (Jump Links)
  • Changing the Link (URL) of a Page

Go to help guide

Navigation menus help visitors find their way around your website’s content. Care should be taken in creating and titling meaningful categories. In general, navigation items should: 

  • Keep visitors on your site 
  • Use key words that will help visitors find information easily 
  • Be short and precise 
  • Use & instead of “and” 
  • Represent the organizational structure of your website 
  • Not link to documents

The top menu consists of the green titles along the top of every web page. It contains dropdown links for each of the main functional areas of the site.

For optimal user experience, limit top-navigation menus to seven (7) categories across the top and in dropdown lists.

The goal with this menu is to be a general guide to the main areas throughout the site. This menu should not be an exhaustive list of all pages within each group. Instead, the items within each dropdown should be pages with generalized information that will help a user decide if they need more information or another page. For example, there are multiple pages containing information surrounding grants accounting. Instead of listing each one in this top menu, editors should list a general page – the main Grants and Contracts Accounting page – and let the left menu assist users from there. 

The expectation is that the Top Menu should need editing only on rare occasions. Individual pages will likely not need added to this menu, but a new category of pages may be beneficial to add. There is a hard limit (which is about 7 items) to the number of navigation items in the top menu. The wording of these categories also must be very short and to the point. 

Left-navigation menus, which are optional, are more detailed than top menus. They are useful for categorizing individual pages within a section - especially large ones. 

In most cases, this menu should contain all the pages within a group. So whenever a new page is published, it should also be added to the left menu upon publication.

Editing Links in Menus

1. Navigate to the Menu Permissions section by selecting the group's name:

screenshot of group name

2. Click Add link to add a new item to the menu or click Edit next to the menu option you want to edit. 

3. Enter the desired display text into Menu link title 

4. Link: There are three ways to link to a page:

  • Begin typing the title of the page you want users to access from this menu option. The title is the name of the page within the Nodes table and the text displayed at the top of the page when you view it. ​​​
  • For pages that begin with ohio.edu, enter the URL portion following “.edu.” For example, link to https://ohio.edu/finance by entering /finance

5. Ensure the Enabled checkbox is checked. 

6. Description can be left blank. 

7. Ensure the Show as expanded checkbox is checked. 

8. Parent Link: This tells the menu which category/group to place the link in.

9. Weight: This tells the menu how high or low within the list the link will appear. Lower weights appear near the top of the listing and higher weights are near the bottom. Editors may need to adjust the weights of other menu items to position a new link between others. 

Moving Links in a Menus

Once menu items are created, their order and grouping may be edited from the initial Edit menu page. This will list all menu options in a drag and drop interface. Editors may then use a mouse to drag items to the desired location. 

To delete an item from the menu, use the operations dropdown to change the default Edit option to Delete

What content management system does Ohio University use?

Ohio University adopted Drupal in 2019 with the goal of migrating all sites by early 2020. 

Why Drupal?

Drupal is a free, open-source web content management framework web content management system that is easy to use and scalable. Drupal provides a back-end framework for at least 2.3% of all websites worldwide – ranging from personal blogs to corporate, political, and government sites.

After conducting a review of several systems, the Web Services team decided to move forward with Drupal hosted on the Acquia Cloud Platform based on the following criteria:

  • Security
  • Architecture
  • Maintenance
  • Ability for staff to manage and update content
  • Ease of migration
  • Experience with Higher Education Institution

Drupal provides the following benefits to the University: 

  • Standardized web presence on a common tool
  • Centrally managed and supported websites
  • Cost savings on licensing and hardware for departments and colleges
  • Non-IT and non-UCM staff can manage content
  • Increased functionality and easier reuse of content across our websites
What if I still have web content that resides outside of Drupal?

If your website or content resides on a content management system other than Drupal, please submit a request form to initiate an evaluation with UCM on how best to migrate your site and/or content.

How can I find out who manages content on a certain site within the Ohio University website?

Due to the size of Ohio University's website and the importance of keeping it up to date, there are hundreds web contributors campus-wide in charge of managing online content for their college or department.

UCM maintains a web manager directory to locate primary contributors for each area.

How do I get access to edit Ohio University websites?

Drupal access is granted as part of a required basic training session called "Drupal Basic Training" that covers these topics:

  • System orientation
  • Understanding content types
  • Using text-editing toolbar
  • Uploading images
  • Best practices
  • Finding help

Sign up for Drupal Basic Training

How do I log into Drupal to edit Ohio University websites?

Only those who have been granted access will be able to log into Drupal with their OHIO ID. 

Drupal / WebCMS login

What should I do if my request involves several different service areas?

Fill out our request form and select "combination" as your request type. Please give us as much detail as possible. We will schedule a kick-off meeting to get all the details we need. 

Who can I reach out to for questions about this service?

Gabrielle Johnston 
Marketing Services Manager


Ohio University Communications and Marketing offers training on a variety of web-focused topics, including:

  • Basic and Advanced Web Management
  • Google Analytics
  • Calendar of University Events (CUE)

 explore training

Forever OHIO Branding Resources

Information about logos, colors, fonts, templates and more.

Go to resources

Editorial Style Guide

A guide to prepare copy for marketing, promotional, and creative projects for Ohio University.

Go to Style Guide

Design Elements Catalog

Browse through a PDF highlighting design elements that can be used to dress up your pages [OHIO ID required].


Digital Accessibility Tools & Guidelines

Practical techniques for improving the digital experience for those who experience technology differently.

Learn More