Drop Shadow

Web Design Policy

Please note that while the following policy generally represents good advice when it discusses technical issues, it has not yet been updated for the new site design and, as far as I know, is no longer policy. I expect that the policy will be updated soon to reflect the new site design.


  1. USD will provide a standardized font and standardized graphic elements to enhance quality and identification with USD. Departments are encouraged to use these elements beyond the main departmental page.
  2. ALT tags on all images are recommended for readability in text only browsers, including those used by the blind.
  3. USD should allocate resources to provide an automatic “style guide” program which would look at a page and offer comments to the designer.
  4. Departments should make every effort to test their web pages prior to going public, and following deployment, address web problems on an ongoing basis.
  5. Text-only browsers should be able to see (or speak) the initial page. Frames are highly discouraged. (See Requirement 6.)
  6. It is recommended that web pages be hosted on USD’s site. This may become a requirement as USD provides additional web design staff.


  1. Each departmental home page shall use a header logo and return bar icon linking to USD’s home page logo that is provided by a professional graphic designer commissioned by the University, and thus consistent with the USD home page logo. The header logo and footer icon must not be copied but linked to that central image.
  2. Each departmental page must include a “contact stamp” identifying the page’s author/maintainer.
  3. Each page that contains dated information must identify the date of latest update next to the contact stamp.
  4. USD departmental pages must comply with all applicable copyright and trademark laws (“intellectual property laws”).
  5. Information that is the responsibility of another department should be maintained by that department. Departments that wish to provide web access to that information should link to the responsible departmental page. The purpose is to prevent duplication of information and to ensure consistency.
  6. The departmental main page may not be framed and must be viewable/speakable by a text-only browser; frames are discouraged on other pages.
  7. Incorrect information (out of date or conflicting with other University Information) must be removed or corrected.