BengalWeb Procedures and Guidelines
The Idaho State University Portal (BengalWeb) provides a personalized web interface for all those who have a formal association with the university. This document contains guidelines for including content in the portal, including Announcements, Channels, and Groups.
For questions concerning this document, or BengalWeb generally, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
BengalWeb Vision Statement
BengalWeb will become the single sign-on gateway to electronic resources needed by students, faculty, staff, and administration to perform their work and to carry on a vibrant University life. It aims to increase efficiency, improve communication, foster an atmosphere conducive to the accomplishment of the University’s mission, and provide ready access to the University’s data systems.
Core Principles of BengalWeb
- Content in BengalWeb should be directed to internal audiences. Content intended for, or only of value to external audiences should reside on the public Web pages (www.isu.edu).
- Ideally, channel content should not duplicate what is on the public Web pages. Either the audience is an internal audience (BengalWeb) or an external audience (www.isu.edu).
- The format of the portal (tab and channels) will ultimately be up to the BengalWeb Steering Committee with input from the content owner(s).
- Content in the tabs and channels should be oriented around end user tasks rather than offices or organizational charts.
- Content within the portal has to have a content owner. Normally, that content owner will not be the BengalWeb Steering Committee or System Administrator.
- Content owners are responsible for maintaining timely and accurate content in BengalWeb.
- The BengalWeb Steering Committee reserves the right to remove content from the portal if it is out of date, wrong, or deemed offensive. If such action is judged necessary, the content owner will be notified immediately.
BengalWeb Steering Committee The BengalWeb Steering Committee is an advisory committee composed of a cross section of University users. The BengalWeb Steering Committee exists to govern the use of the portal by providing direction and advice for content, administration, and user issues. The University Chief Information Officer (CIO) is ultimately responsible for the portal. The council of Vice Presidents will serve as a decision or resolution making body for the portal.
Channels and Tabs
- Channels are the building blocks of BengalWeb. Channels are organized into Tabs for logical organizational and to ease navigation.
- The BengalWeb Portal Coordinating Committee will make final decisions regarding the tabs that will be included in the portal, the channels included in the tabs, and the people or groups who are tab owners.
- The BengalWeb implementation team has created a set of default tabs and channels. These tabs are named Home, Employees, Faculty/Staff Tools, Academics, Library, Campus Life, and How Do I…. Default channels can be viewed in these default tabs.
- Tabs and Channels within the portal are customizable – some tabs and channels required for university business purposes may be locked down for functional reasons.
- The BengalWeb Coordinating Committee ultimately defines the available list of channels for end users.
- Suggestions for new channel development may be made to the BengalWeb Coordinating Committee by filling out and submitting the Content Creation Request Form. Suggestions must include the proposed channel name, target audience, and channel owner.
- All content inclusion is ultimately decided by the BengalWeb Coordinating Committee.
- All content must follow the appearance and style guidelines set forth by the BengalWeb Coordinating Committee.
- All content must adhere to standing University policies and/or applicable laws. These include but are not limited to the Student Handbook, Faculty-Staff Handbook, Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources Policy, US copyright laws, and any other applicable policies or standards.
- Content in violation of University policy will be removed and appropriate action will be taken.
- Content should not be duplicated within BengalWeb. The BengalWeb Coordinating Committee will review content and ask owners to delete or compress content that duplicates existing content unless a case can be made to keep both.
- Please observe these guidelines when using any content method within BengalWeb.
- Submitted material must be professionally presented and thoroughly proofread.
- Submitted material must be verified for accuracy by a knowledgeable party and/or by someone in an appropriate University office.
- All submitted material should include the name of the originating office and contact information, including a phone number.
- Links to a website should be as specific as possible. Example: A link to an online article should link to the article itself rather than the main page of the website.
- No personal advertising of products or services.
- Abide by the United States Code Section 508 standards for accessibility, especially as it relates to Web-based content, to ensure that all users, including those with disabilities, have equal access to your content. See: www.w3.org/WAI/intro/wcag.
- Whenever possible, avoid sending paper copy, or mass e-mail, after distributing in BengalWeb.
- DON’T USE ALL CAPS as this is difficult to read and is often construed as "yelling" in an electronic format.
- Be considerate of your readers. Choose the correct distribution lists. To learn more about how to target specific audiences, refer to the “Targeted Announcements Overview” section of this document. Don’t "SPAM" the university population – try to send your messages to the appropriate audience only.
- University Relations or the BengalWeb Coordinating Committee should not substantively modify content or messages sent by others, unless given permission by the original sender.
- Always review your posted materials before logging out of BengalWeb to verify your submission is displayed correctly to your viewers.
- BengalWeb administrators reserve the right to make minor modifications to message placement and presentation, in order to ensure quality.
- Targeted announcements can be used to communicate with groups of users within BengalWeb. In order for this service to be effective, it must be regulated.
- Training on the use of Targeted Announcements is mandatory.
- Campus departments should be limited to two individuals having this access.
- There are two types of Targeted Announcements:
- Campus Announcements which are targeted to the entire campus community
- Personal Announcements which are targeted to specific audience
Appropriate Use of Targeted Announcements
Although Targeted Announcements are “internal” in the sense that they are only received by faculty, staff, and students of the University, care should be taken to ensure that text is composed using an appropriate tone or attitude. Announcements are meant to be both informative and cordial in their composition. Blunt statements and brash directives must be avoided. Users who create announcements are responsible for their content and must also consider the appropriate use of the media. In general, announcements should not be made for activities or events concerning entities, clubs, or organizations not chartered or approved by the University. Messages that are fraudulent, harassing, defamatory, obscene, threatening, or in violation of state laws should not be posted and will be removed from BengalWeb.
Campus Announcements Guidelines
Campus Announcements appear as a channel within the BengalWeb home page and are intended for the entire University community. The Campus Announcements channel cannot be deleted from the home page.
Who is authorized to send Campus Announcements?
Campus Announcements are reserved for use by the President’s Office, University Vice Presidents, Public Safety, Facilities Services, Information Technology Services, Human Resources, BengalWeb System Administration, or any official University communication coordinated through the office of University Relations. All BengalWeb users see these messages.
Guidelines for creation and sending
- This channel is intended for quick messages that affect the entire University community. To correct a message, edit the sent message, then resend. After that, delete the first message.
- First in-first-out: When someone posts a message after your message, your message moves down in the list.
- Title – The title of the message should be short (50 characters or less), yet clear enough to convey the subject of the message linked to it. Since it is a title, proper punctuation rules should apply. Content for the announcement should be included.
- Announcement –The text of the announcement should be brief and include all necessary items such as time, location, room, etc. A point of contact (name, department, and phone or University e-mail address) for more information should always be included as well as a “byline” stating who posted the message. Example: Posted Wednesday, September 12, 2005 by Charles A. Brown. The “byline” should be the last sentence of the message.
- Expiration – All messages must have an expiration date no longer than seven (7) days after posting or not past the date of the event, deadline, or activity being publicized.
- Designed for use only by certain offices.
- Messages should be appropriate for all BengalWeb users: students, faculty, and staff.
Personal Announcements Guidelines
Personal Announcements appear as a channel on the BengalWeb Home tab. These are text-only messages with space formatting and should not sit on the system for more than seven (7) days. The Personal Announcements channel cannot be deleted from the Home tab. Personal Announcements are messages targeted to specific audiences like “faculty”or “students,” or even “Students in XX Major” or “XX Class.” Additionally, this section is where students automatically receive messages from the Banner system about holds, registration, etc.
Currently, Personal Announcements may be targeted in the following ways:
- All students
- All staff
- All faculty
- Students with certain majors
- Students in individual disciplines
- Students in individual classes
By Luminis Group:
- Members of a particular group
By Imported Group:
- All current employees who have been employed for 15 years or more by the University
- All current students who have submitted an application for financial aid and who have not completed a scholarship application
BengalWeb also includes the capability to send messages to additional groups, called “Imported Groups,” from data captured by Banner. Requests for Imported Groups are reviewed by the BengalWeb Coordinating Committee on a case-by-case basis. Contact email@example.com for more information. Two examples of Imported Groups are:
Who is authorized to send Personal Announcements?
Access to and responsibility for the coordination, approval, and dissemination of Personal Announcements resides at the Division, College, or specific academic and business service area level, as designated by the Vice President or Dean of those units. These include but are not limited to:
- Office of the President
- Office of the Vice President of each division
- Dean's Offices
- Educational and Information Technology Services
- Office of the Registrar
- Office of Financial Aid
- Office of Financial Services
- University Relations
- Faculty Senate
- Staff Council
- Human Resources
- Public Safety
- Facility Services
- This channel is meant for targeting certain populations within the University community. Therefore, University-wide announcements should not go here (instead, see Campus Announcements above).
- Expiration dates apply only to messages posted to “Personal Announcements.” All messages must have an expiration date no longer than seven (7) days after posting or not past the date of the event, deadline, or activity being publicized.
- Scheduling: it is possible to schedule the delivery and expiration dates of Personal Announcements well in advance. To alert people to an upcoming event, consider posting messages one to two weeks in advance, then posting it again closer to the event. Again, please limit the duration to seven (7) days.
- The title of the message should be short (limited to 50 characters), but clear enough to convey the subject of the message linked to it.
- Body text should not be too long, as only 16% of users typically read long messages online, word for word. Consider placing a link to more information within the announcement. Limit text to 5-75 words. Include all necessary items such as time, location, room, etc. A point of contact (name, department, and phone or University e-mail address) for more information should always be included as well as a “byline” stating who posted the message. Example: Posted Wednesday, September 12, 2005 by Charles A. Brown. The “byline” should be the last sentence of the message.
- To correct a message, edit the sent message, then resend. After that, delete the first message.
- First in-first-out: When subsequent messages are posted, previous messages move down in the list. Do not modify the order of messages in the system.
- Do not delete messages that you have not posted.
- Personal announcements are limited in length, are available for a limited time, and are not archived. The content for them should be of a less critical nature.
- Notices of such things as holds or critical deadlines should be sent via email, which is more permanent.
Guidelines for creating and sending Personal Announcements
Appropriate Use of Personal Announcements Channel
Following are examples of appropriate and timely targeted messages:
- Upcoming University events and activities sent to certain people.
- Class cancellations sent by someone within the College.
- Messages to students in a specific major.
- Changes to University policies and procedures.
- Upcoming professional development and training announcements.
- System messages sent automatically from Banner.
Channels constitute blocks of primary content below each tab of the portal. Channels are designed to present stable, high-demand content and interactive applications to a significant user base. In BengalWeb, channels usually share space on a page with other channels. This structure creates interdependence beyond the traditional department Web site. Channels must present a cohesive look and feel. It is important to remember that with a few exceptions there is no captive audience in BengalWeb; users are in control of the content placed on their pages. Therefore, developing a channel for BengalWeb is no guarantee that content will reach the intended audience. Success here will depend on matching content with what a user needs and wants, and then getting the word out. Because it is personalized and customizable, BengalWeb is perfect for targeted content. Content owners should not try to be all things to all people. There will be much better success if the focus is on providing just what is needed.
- "Locked Down” (cannot be moved or removed). Some tabs are locked down for particular roles (e.g., the My Courses tab for the student and faculty roles).
- Movable (can be rearranged but not removed)
- Removable (subscribed by default but can be removed)
- Subscribable (not subscribed by default).
Channels and tabs in the BengalWeb portal can be:
Tabs and channels should be locked down only when in the interests of the University to support official policies and procedures, or for job-related channels (e.g., Self-Service channels related to one's role at the University). For example, the only channels locked down on the Home tab are Personal (Targeted) Announcements and Campus Announcements.
Process for development
- Submit a request to develop a channel via the “Suggestions Channel” in the portal on the "How Do I..." tab.
- The BengalWeb Coordinating Committee will review for approval.
- The BengalWeb System Administrator will work with the requestor to create a channel in the portal.
- Developed content will be reviewed by BengalWeb Steering Committee for compliance with the BengalWeb Style Guide and the BengalWeb Procedures and Guidelines.
- The BengalWeb System Administrator will not be responsible for the content development or content maintenance.
- All channel content will be reviewed for relevancy and maintenance every six months.
- Outdated channels will be removed.
- Official departments and units of Idaho State University
- Registered student organizations
- Educational and research consortia headquartered at Idaho State University, but not solely University entities
- Designated University affiliate
- Commercial ventures affiliated with Idaho State University, unless sponsored by an official Idaho State University department or unit
- Any organization not directly affiliated with an Idaho State University department or unit
- Student groups not registered with Idaho State University
- Individuals, whether affiliated with Idaho State University or not
- Content should appeal to an audience larger than 100. A Group (see Groups below) can be created to deliver targeted content for smaller audiences. Note: Channels are publicly accessible based on a user's role. Groups may be either public or private.
- Content must not duplicate already available channels.
- Content should sensibly require creation of a new channel, rather than inclusion in an existing channel.
- Ability to maintain the channel over time (minimum of one year) should be apparent, or a plan for handing off the maintenance should be included with the request.
- Web development capabilities must be assured by the requester (support for channel development is limited).
- Channel development specifications must be met (see below).
Eligible to develop portal content
Not eligible to contribute content
Criteria for approval of channel request
Channel development specifications
The following guidelines must be followed when developing Web-based content to be delivered via BengalWeb:
The Groups application gives students, faculty, and staff at Idaho State University the ability to create and manage group homepages for clubs, workgroups, committees or other affiliations and interests. These homepages include threaded discussions, photo archives, news, and more.
- Groups must be authorized and may be established in BengalWeb only if they meet the general criteria below.
- Groups can be Public (open to any subscriber) or Restricted (open to subscribers who meet unique criteria defined by the Group owner).
A Group must be composed of students, faculty, staff, or anyone with access to BengalWeb and must be used for activities related to University functions. Groups must not promote or support activities that are illegal, commercial in nature (unless associated with the University), or that violate the rights of others.
Student Groups may be created for student organizations or study groups or for any University-related business. When operating a Student Group, participants are responsible for conducting its affairs in a responsible manner consistent with the policies and procedures of the college, including the Student Handbook, the University's Acceptable Use Policy, and all student organization policies set forth by the Student Activities and Leadership.
University Groups may be created for recognized groups at the University, as well as work groups and committees, for the purpose of facilitating official university information and/or work on specific projects defined by the University. University Groups must govern themselves in accordance with the current University's Acceptable Use Policy.
Requesting a Group
The Create New Group request form can be accessed from within BengalWeb by clicking on the "Groups" icon, then clicking on the "Create Group" button to access the Create New Group online form. Once submitted, the requester will be notified of the status of the request through email.
Lack of Activity
Any Group may be deleted from BengalWeb due to a lack of maintenance, content that is out of date by 90 days or more, or no activity in the Group’s area or account (defined as no usage in a 90-day time frame).