Components for aligning with the Stanford Identity system
All Stanford department, program, lab, school, and administrative unit websites are encouraged to include three components to align their websites with Stanford’s Identity system:
- Stanford global identity bar
- Local header (including the department signature/lockup)
- Stanford global footer
Outside of these three components, we urge you to adhere to typographic recommendations and color recommendations, particularly as it impacts accessibility. In general terms, the Stanford Identity team wants you to be innovative and creative in how you interpret and express the Stanford Identity.
Stanford global identity bar overview
The Stanford global identity bar came out of a need to provide a “home” for all Stanford websites, both visually and functionally. This bar, containing the Stanford logo, anchors to the top of your website, above your local header. It serves visually as the main Stanford University mark, and functionally, it links back to homesite, www.stanford.edu. By providing a consistent global “bar” at the top of websites, our ecosystem of sites feel deliberate and understandable to users.
Want to learn more? Read additional research on approaches to global navigation, from the Nielson Norman Group.
Local header overview
The local header, sometimes called the masthead, is a complex component which typically includes some of the most critical parts of your website: your logo or Stanford wordmark, your local site search, and your main navigation.
Department Signature/Lockup: Our Decanter team has gone to great lengths to create logos for your websites that are compliant with identity guidelines depending on how your organization is situated in your parent organization, administrative unit, or school.
Search: The local search is a very important tool to users who rely on it. This functionality has been fully accessibility tested.
Navigation: Your main navigation is one of the most critical parts of your website. Top level of navigation serves as the main buckets of entry for your users—regardless of how they enter your site, sideways or directly from the homepage. It is critical that this navigation—which collapses to a mobile navigation for smaller devices—and your in-page left sidebar of secondary navigation on interior pages is both usable and accessible. Our developers have tested and vetted the accessibility of this feature.
Additionally, Decanter’s user experience team has gone to great lengths to test the usability of the navigation. We have looked at both conceptual questions around whether users are “likely” to hit certain pages as well as testing to ensure that users can use the tool as we have built it.
Stanford global footer overview
The Stanford global footer is strongly recommended to be placed at the bottom of all official university websites. It is designed to enhance sites with consistent Stanford branding and navigation, much like the brand bar and local header. It also contains crucial links for emergency information and satisfying legal requirements.