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Archive for the 'cms' Category

How you can help us improve Silva performance

Digital Presence15 August 2017

Please help us to improve Silva’s performance by deleting unused content and files.
This includes old publications, test content, unused images, PDFs and other media.

Please move all videos stored in Silva over to UCL’s media streaming service, MediaCentral.
Videos already streamed via YouTube, Vimeo or other services are fine – no need to take action for these.

Any questions or concerns please email web-support@ucl.ac.uk

Many thanks in advance.

Digital Presence
Information Services Division
University College London

Silva | Indigo | Drupal

Digital Presence6 February 2017

Things keep changing, it’s hard to keep up-to-date with everything that happens at UCL, so here’s some help!

At UCL we use a content management system called Silva. To make our Silva sites responsive, we have introduced a design pattern library called Indigo. Indigo sits on top of Silva and helps us create responsive sites, i.e., sites that look good and work well on mobile devices. See below for what to do to migrate to Silva Indigo.

We are also working on introducing a replacement for Silva, called Drupal. Below is a link to information about the Drupal project.

Where to find things?


  • links to responsibilities of the Chief Editor
  • information for people new to Silva
  • what to do if you want to make a site live
  • Silva how-to guides – e.g. setting up Google Analytics
  • information about training
  • etc.

Use the link to all the Silva material available


Tip: you can also Google all the how-to guides,  e.g.

Silva   UCL   images
Silva   UCL   hide
Indigo   UCL   captioned image


Sites already in Drupal:

  1. The Bartlett
  2. Brain Sciences
  3. Teaching and Learning

Next 4 pilot sites we are currently working on:

  1. SSEES
  2. UCL Global
  3. UCL News
  4. UCL Ophthalmology (IOO)

Any further questions? Please email us at web-support@ucl.ac.uk

WebNet Autumn Term 2016: further information and slides

ClareKennedy2 December 2016

Editors at the autumn 2016 WebNet meeting

Thank you to all editors who attended this term’s WebNet. We’ve had good feedback about the event and it was fantastic to see so many of you there.

We were especially pleased to be joined by colleagues from UCL Brain Sciences who shared their experience of building a new site in Drupal and working with colleagues across UCL on their re-launched site: www.ucl.ac.uk/brain-sciences

The section on the functionality of the new CMS provoked many interesting questions which we’ve rounded up for you on our new Drupal feature page and on our other service pages.

We discussed website standards in the context of department and faculty sites and explained that online guidance will be shared in the new year as part of UCL’s new response to Competitions and Markets Authority guidance for HEIs. A very good question arose after WebNet on whether we also need to look at standards around professional services sites. We think this is very important but we should wait until the ongoing user research into staff and student digital experience is complete before taking this forward (see below for more on this project).

We shared and discussed the new URL naming policy and details of our 2016-17 Digital Transformation projects and links to further information and answers to all your questions are below.

WebNet Q&A

Drupal project update

All the information you need on the CMS project is on our Drupal page. Colleagues were naturally very interested in the timeline for migrating sites to Drupal. This will begin in earnest after the beta roll-out (from March) and we will contact content site owners two months before the work is carried out with a migration checklist and full details of the process:

CMS features and functionality roadmap

Your functionality questions and answers are now on our new Drupal features page. The main aim of the CMS project is to replicate all functionality currently available in Silva so we can focus on migrating all sites to Drupal and eventually decommission Silva but we will continue to capture feature requests and publish the roadmap on the features page:

Moving to Indigo

We looked at how many sites have already moved to Indigo and and discussed the need for Digital Presence to ensure the message is clear on the benefits of moving both to enhance the usability of sites but also to pave the way to Drupal. Find out more about the benefits and process of moving to Indigo on our website:

URL naming policy

Joel Hardman, our Web Technical Lead, shared details of the URL naming policy that has been approved by the Digital Transformation Governance Group as part of our website governance structure. As such we reserve the right to approve all URLs via the domain eligibility committee and work with you to find a good URL that meets all our best practice and SEO criteria and your own website goals:

Digital Transformation projects 2016-17

Susan Farrell, Head of Digital Presence, shared details of the Digital Transformation domain’s projects for the current year including user research into key staff and student user journeys, a new ‘virtual student centre’ website for current students, improved search, event management and prospectus management.

WebNet, 16 November: Find out more about the Drupal service roll-out

ClareKennedy20 October 2016

This term’s WebNet will take place on Wednesday 16 November, 2-4pm at 26 Bedford Way (Room G03).

The session will focus on the next phase of the Drupal CMS project and cover:

  • Drupal pilot sites update: hear from our Brain Sciences and Teaching & Learning pilot site editors on their experience of using Drupal and how they have helped us to shape and improve the new CMS
  • CMS features and product roadmap: a look at current Drupal functionality and how we will manage your requests for new features
  • Moving from Silva to Drupal: service roll-out, prioritisation, timing, training and support
  • Your questions and comments

No need to book. We hope to see you there. If you can’t make the meeting, further and more detailed communications on Drupal and what it means for your websites will be sent in early November via the Digital Presence newsletter and our other channels.

Find out more about the new CMS on our Drupal page. Any questions please email web-support@ucl.ac.uk

A quick update on CTA buttons and their use in Indigo

JoelSmith10026 July 2016

Update 18 August 2016
This has now been applied.

A call-to-action button’s purpose on your website is to provide the user with a visually enhanced link to point them to the most likely action they are looking for on your web pages.

Snap 2016-07-25 at 17.59.39

Example CTA buttons

They are styled in a consistent style on all our Indigo sites so that the user can see the most important call-to-action without having to think. See Steve Krug’s iconic book for more advice on usability and intuitive websites:

Steve Krug, Don’t make me think (2014)

As these are specific user events we also track these CTA buttons as events so they are easier to monitor in Google Analytics.

Recently we have been considering the use of CTA buttons in our CMS and we have realised that this pattern has been misused in the ‘more news’ and ‘more events’ links at the bottom of the news/events feed widgets. In order to address this we will be rolling out a change in the next day or two that will change the ‘more news’ and ‘more events’ links back to normal text links. No other CTAs should be affected but do contact web-support@ucl.ac.uk if you have any questions or concerns.

Find out more about the CTA button

Three things we love about Drupal

ClareKennedy1 July 2016

Do more within the text editor

One of our favourite features in the new CMS is the WYSIWG text editor. We’ve modified the standard Drupal editor to add great new functionality that can be used from within the editor. You will be able to:

  • Add a call-to-action with one click
  • Create an image gallery
  • Change the number of columns and create your perfect detail page


Helptext and labels to get more from your content

A key element in building a CMS tailored to UCL’s needs is the creation of intuitive labels and help text to guide editors in building accessible, usable and on-brand web pages. All components and fields have a description and explanation on avoiding common pitfalls and getting the most from your content.


No more hunting for images

And finally, we think you’ll love the new Media Library. As with WordPress, your images are stored in one Library so it’s easier to search for them plus you can see the images in thumbnail format!


WebNet presentation and name change

Digital Presence19 January 2016

For those of you who attended WebNet in December 2015 and those who couldn’t attend, please read the presentation used at WebNet.

What is the presentation about?

It covers the CMS project, website standards and the launch of our new ‘building-great-websites’ site.
This site is for people who are building / going to build a website and outlines everything you need to think about before and during the build!

  1. WebNet December 2015 – Presentation (pdf)
  2. Building Great Websites

Name change for WAMS

Following a review of the former Learning Technology and Media Services (LTMS) teams in ISD, it has been decided to change the names of the individual teams
from January 1st, 2016, to reflect more accurately what they do:

  1. Digital Media (formerly Creative Media Services)
  2. Digital Education (formely E-learning Environments or ELE)
  3. Digital Presence (formerly Web & Mobile Services or WAMS)

There are no changes to email addresses such as silva-support@ucl.ac.uk and web-support@ucl.ac.uk.

Please also look at our project page for the new CMS (Drupal)

WebNet: autumn term meeting on 2 December

ClareKennedy13 November 2015

You’re warmly invited to join Web & Mobile Services on Wednesday 2 December, 2-4 pm, at 20 Bedford Way, Room LG04 for this term’s WebNet meeting.

Take part in a Q&A session about UCL’s new content management system, learn more about the Drupal feature roadmap and find out about the work being done to improve department and faculty websites.

We will upload the meeting slides to the blog following WebNet and update our online CMS project FAQs to include questions covered during the meeting. Keep an eye on the WebNet category for further posts.

No need to RSVP. We look forward to seeing you there!

WebNet presentation

Digital Presence22 June 2015

Thanks to those that came to the WebNet meeting on June 18th.
We have had a number of requests for the presentation and for those who came but would like to have another look, please visit the WAMS news page on the ISD website at


Reminder – WebNet tomorrow June 18th

Digital Presence17 June 2015

This is to remind you that tomorrow, Thursday June 18th,  between 12 and 2, WAMS is holding its termly WebNet meeting which this time is dedicated to a briefing about
Indigo and Silva and the new CMS.

The room is in the basement of the Cruciform building:

LT2 Basement 404

Feel free to bring your lunch.

Hope to see you there!
The WAMS team