Content and Writing

Each office or department website should communicate distinctives about the office or department, while reinforcing the fact that each individual aspect serves the same cohesive institution. Azusa Pacific University (APU) programs and the university as a whole will be judged, in part, by the quality of our publications, both online and in print.

All copy on the APU website is subject to the guidelines prescribed in the Editorial Style Guide for APU (PDF). For issues not covered in the style guide, please refer to the Chicago Manual of Style.

All college, department, course, faculty, or other webpages that provide specific university academic program information (requirements for majors, minors, credentials, certificates, or graduate degree programs) are required to use the official text of the academic program, as described in the current university catalog. This will prevent the confusion that results from various published versions of academic information. Any academic content that has not been approved by the provost, academic senate, and dean will not be posted, even if approval is pending.

It is critical that webpages hosted by APU not contain:

  • Defamatory, abusive, or harassing material
  • Offensive language
  • Pornographic material
  • Sexist or racist material

No APU webpage shall contain copyrighted material, whether graphics, photos, or text, without the author’s or publisher’s written permission.

No individual’s personal data (e.g., home phone number, address, etc.) shall be used on an APU website unless written permission is obtained.

Guidelines for Writing for the Web

Effective Web copy follows these general guidelines:

  • Visitors to a particular office or department site should know exactly whose site they are looking at (e.g., School of Music, Department of Art and Design, International Center) and understand its purpose.
  • Copy must be clear, short, and direct. Web readers tend to skip from one page to another, and from one link to another, rather than reading pages sequentially. They glean their information in bite-sized chunks, rather than long paragraphs as is common when reading traditional print materials (e.g., brochure, newspaper, journal, etc.).
  • Abbreviations and acronyms must be spelled out the first time they are used on each page; think of each page as being self-contained.
  • Keep in mind that good content drives an academic website. It is important that the copy generated reflect the university’s high communication standards. Therefore, no slang or colloquialisms are permitted (please refer to the Editorial Style Manual for APU (PDF) for parameters and specific rules).