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Web Overview
Brand execution guidelines

Web standards and guidelines for asu.edu

asu.edu is a complex website fulfilling diverse needs and serving diverse audiences. An in-depth study of the use and purpose of asu.edu was completed as part of the Web Standards 2.0 project.

Review the project report to learn:

  • About asu.edu
    • The ASU web presence and its purpose 
    • The ASU web audience and what they are trying to accomplish
  • About web standards and why we have them 

See the definitions, roles and purpose of the types of asu.edu sites.

Glossary

  • Web standards: The universitywide standards for all aspects of asu.edu.
  • Web Standards 2.0: The first standards for asu.edu were launched in 2015. Web Standards 2.0 is the next, and more comprehensive, overhaul of standards for asu.edu. 
  • Web standards 2.0 limited (WS2L): The first compliance state for the web standards 2.0 project (Jan. 31, 2021) — WS2L addressed the most problematic user experiences across asu.edu, navigation and site identification. The Jan. 31 deadline required that the new header and footer be installed on asu.edu sites and including updating sites to Arial (used in the new header and footer component) from Roboto.
  • CMS — Content Management System: Helps users create, manage and modify content on a website without the need for technical knowledge. They provide a web-based tool that enables users to build on-brand and best practices-based sites through a simple content editing interface — similar to formatting text in Microsoft Word or Google Docs — no coding knowledge required.
  • Drupal: An open-source web content management framework that Webspark is built upon. It is the back-end framework for more than 13% of the top 10,000 websites worldwide.
  • Webspark: ASU’s customized version of Drupal that allows anyone to spin up a website that has the ASU standards baked into the site, components and templates. The current version of Webspark, Webspark 1 was initially released in 2015 and is built on Drupal 7 and has been continually updated since its release. Webspark 2 is built on Drupal 9 and includes the UI kit components developed throughout the Web Standards 2.0 project.
  • Component: A standardized component to feature or display common content needs across a website (ie. asu.edu). Having standardized components for common content display needs across asu.edu ensures brand alignment and reduces resource expenditures across the university by providing standardized solutions for components units ]might otherwise have to spend time researching, developing and testing. This also improves user experience across asu.edu as users do not have to relearn or reorient to new content display and styles. 
  • UI kit — User interface kit: A collection of shareable, reusable design elements such as components to display content and navigation, spacing grid and text styles. 
  • Design System: A collection of reusable components (UI kit), guided by clear standards, that can be assembled together to build any number of websites and maintain standards alignment.
  • Unity Design System — UDS: Unity Design System, named after Unity Avenue on ASU’s Polytechnic campus, is the platform-agnostic UI kit/code library (built with Bootstrap 4 and React.js frameworks) based on user experience and accessibility best practices, data, research, user testing and ASU brand standards. It is the outcome of many months of work by the community throughout the Web Standards 2.0 project. Having a design system allows all of asu.edu to adopt a unified set of standards that represents the ASU brand and prioritizes an optimal user experience, regardless of how each individual website is built — creating a more seamless experience for asu.edu visitors.