University Web Developers

University Web Developers

Hi All-  I was wondering how many of you are using wordpress as a cms for all or part of your website, and how is it working out for you?  we are looking at some of the options and think WP might be the way to go.


Thanks.

Views: 224

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi, Missy.

If you search "wordpress" (top right), you'll find quite a few discussions.

Here are a few of our recent reports on WordPress at Bates:

http://next.batesweb.net/
http://next.batesweb.net/2010/03/09/home-views-report/
http://next.batesweb.net/2010/02/10/mu-support/

-Jay
Wordpress did not make it into the top tier of used CMSs in higher ed in our recent survey: http://doteduguru.com/id4579-results-higher-ed-cms-usage.html. But there were a couple schools that did use it that you can pull out of the downloadable results.

Ultimately, Wordpress isn't a CMS, it's a blogging framework that you can inflate into a CMS with the right tools. That's fine for smallish sites, but rarely appropriate for sites as large and complex as the ones we drive in higher ed. That's not to say it can't be done, and done well, but you should make sure that you're using the right tool to address your problems.

If you need a robust CMS that always falls into the open source/free camp, you'd be much happier in the long run with either dotCMS or Drupal.
We've found WordPress to be quite full featured and robust enough to handle our home site.

http://next.batesweb.net/2010/02/10/mu-support/
http://next.batesweb.net/programs/hub/platform/criteria/
http://next.batesweb.net/2010/01/25/drupal-wordpress/

Don't know much about dotCMS. I appreciate you writing about it here on CUWebD.

-Jay
Missy,

I use Wordpress for our college news site and it has worked out well for what I wanted it to do. Easy RSS feed integration along with Feedburner e-mail subscription options, thousand of free widgets\plug-ins and so forth.

The CMS works well, but I found you need to lock down the formatting options as end-users will try and place their own formatting in there and it will cause you much grief. For example, one post had some style tags placed in-line to the H1's over-riding the external CSS styles along with other in-line formatting and it messed up formatting on every post along with some widgets and the navigation...Text size and so forth. WTF? I pulled my hair out trying to figure it out why one post would have an effect on all of them. I could see the inline tags causing the problems using Firebug, but I never could find the tags in the posts or the code. It made no sense and I had to hire someone to fix it. I am not a PHP programmer but after that problem occurred, I am digging in and trying to learn it enough to support Wordpress. Wordpress is very different and I cringe every time a new update comes along that needs to be installed, but that is due to my own inexperience with it.

Whatever CMS you decide on, just make sure you or someone on your staff have the skill sets to support it. All of them will require digging into the code at some point. None of them will do exactly what you want it do out of the box. We hired a company to convert our Photoshop PSD file into a working Wordpress theme and went from there, learning on the fly...Still learning.

Chris Hoyer from CSS-Tricks has some good video tutorials on building Wordpress themes and he just came out with a new book "Digging into Wordpress". Give his videos a look and this will help you determine if Wordpress is right for you. If you are a Windows shop, expect to spend some time with your host getting Wordpress support on the servers. Not a huge deal, but there is a learning curve.

The jury is still out on whether Wordpress is a real CMS or if using Wordpress on a larger site is prudent. Some say no, some do it anyway. Sitepoint.com for example serves up thousands of pages per day and it is a pure Wordpress\PHP\Mysql back-end.

I am looking into converting several of our affiliate sites for the college into Wordpress self hosted sites as I see the product evolving and it has a large support community which is important.

Do some digging, install some demos and give them all a try. I am hearing good things about Expression Engine as well. I think it boils down to what people are most familiar with when they give you advice on what CMS you should go with. I believe if you stick with the ones that have a large support community you will be in good hands.

Rick
Rick-

Check out TinyMCE Advanced for all users. I removed all formatting except the semantic options.

http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/tinymce-advanced/

Also, you can find errant tags in content by using Search and Replace (administrators only).

http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/search-and-replace/
Thanks for that. Let me give it look...

Rick
ALso Rick, I'm sure you've already styled your WP theme to fit your school's style, but look into the Theme "Thesis," which is designed in an intelligent way so that when the Theme updates or when WP updates, it will not effect your overall theme... Editing Thesis is exceptionally easy.
We're currently using WordPress to run all of our sites, including our main web page. After looking around at different CMS options, we decided that WP would be the easiest to bend to our needs.

http://today.law.utah.edu
http://www.law.utah.edu
Nice work, Aaron.

Why don't you add your sites to our WordPress in Higher Education Google Doc?

http://bit.ly/7yzmDy

-Jay
Wordpress 3 is coming out in May I believe. WP 3 is supposed to have a bunch of built in CMS features.

Currently WP can be used pretty well as a CMS just to control pages, not any fancy complex stuff really. I have done that on a few client sites unrelated to the uni.

While not a full featured CMS currently, if you just need basic page content WP is a simple effective way to go.
It all depends on how you define a CMS.

These are the CMS features we used to evaluate software. Are there others we missed?

http://bit.ly/5JwdO4
We are in the middle of our complete website redesign and I have done a lot of research to chose the proper CMS for our college. Free CMS and commercial CMS. I found that Wordpress was actually built as a blog type framework style. Wordpress has grown over the years and now there are certain tools that can be installed to make it work like a CMS. From my research and our college needs, Wordpress was not a good choice to use it as a complete stand alone CMS for the website. I plan on using Wordpress to supplement our website to allow for student blogger accounts. I plan on using Wordpress MU. But I chose I commercial CMS with a very reasonable price tag that total fits our needs and our small community college budget: Sitefinity. Sitefinity is an ASP.NET based system that has the options of using cutting edge web technologies such as ASP.NET AJAX, Silverlight, WebForms and the new Microsoft MVC (Model View Controller Framework). The IT department loves it because it works very well with Active Directory.



http://mu.wordpress.org/ Wordpress Multiple Users Link
http://www.sitefinity.com/ Sitefinity link:

RSS

Elsewhere

Latest Activity

Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Congrats go out to Harper College on their 2014 ACUP awards for their print and online catalog! Well-deserved!"
17 hours ago
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Wondering why you should pick a CMS designed exclusively for higher ed? Find out in today's blog post! "
20 hours ago
Michael Carpenter replied to Michael Carpenter's discussion Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation 2014
"The discussion we've had around it so far concerns communications prior to as well as once the "business relationship" with the student has ceased, such as Recruitment and Alumni Relations activities. Since these activities occur in…"
20 hours ago
Dan Bashaw replied to Michael Carpenter's discussion Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation 2014
"Hi Michael -- Do you have any links to recent articles, posts, or PSE policy documents that put CASL in the PSE context? I find that when I discuss CASL with various departments, a common first reaction is that it 'doesn't mean us'.…"
yesterday
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"The OmniUpdate family just got bigger! We welcome San Diego Community College District to the OU Campus CMS user community!"
yesterday
Michael Carpenter posted a discussion

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation 2014

How have Canadian post-secondary schools dealt with complying to CRTC's anti-spam legislation that is coming into effect this July? Are all out-going bulk messages managed centrally?Are all your list-servs centralized?What services are you using?Any social media implications, such as promoted posts through Facebook?Thanks.See More
yesterday
Profile IconMichael Carpenter and Carl-Martin Nelson joined University Web Developers
Monday
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Wondering how to create your own CMS gadget? Check out today's blog post! "
Apr 17
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Another new customer! We welcome Clark College to the OmniUpdate family and OU Campus CMS user community!"
Apr 16
Profile IconAndy Long, Melba Acevedo and George Fullerton joined University Web Developers
Apr 15
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"We warmly welcome Dillard University to the OmniUpdate family! We're excited to have them aboard the OU Campus CMS user train!"
Apr 14
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"We welcome Reynolds Community College to the OU Campus CMS user community! We're excited to have them in the OmniUpdate family!"
Apr 11
Brian Richardson is now a member of University Web Developers
Apr 10
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"New post up on the blog! Tips from Higher Education Marketing's CEO Philippe Taza on Tackling Higher Ed Digital Marketing Challenges. Give it a read and comment on your top challenges!"
Apr 9
John Jackson commented on Debbie's blog post New ICANN TLDs
"We've identified the domains we want to follow, such as .education (released at the end of March), .college, .university, and .sucks (I'm serious on the last one). The last three listed are still in the evaluation phase.  Just today…"
Apr 9
Brett Sizemore posted a discussion

Interactive Designer

APPLY AT: https://jobs.pepperdine.eduThe Interactive Designer supports Pepperdine's integrated marketing communications efforts aimed at strengthening the brand, elevating national reputation, improving recruitment, and building engagement through creative design across media including web, mobile, broadcast, print, and events.DUTIES: Directly support the creative communications needs of the University through the development and execution of integrated…See More
Apr 8
Brett Sizemore is now a member of University Web Developers
Apr 8
Heather Godwin joined Rik Williams's group
Thumbnail

Maps and Mapping

For the discussion of the Mapping of University campuses and facilities from static images to groovy Google mashups.
Apr 7
Profile IconMatt Dana and Heather Godwin joined University Web Developers
Apr 7
Matt Lauer is now a member of University Web Developers
Apr 3

UWEBD has been in existence for more than 10 years and is the very best email discussion list on the Internet, in any industry, on any topic

About

© 2014   Created by Mark Greenfield.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service