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LibGuides Standards and Best Practices


Course Guides

Best Practices for Research and Course Guides


Guidelines for course guides, because of the narrowly focused audiences, must be considerably more flexible in design and style than any other pages. The principle focus should be on providing resources and instruction for a particular course, in consultation with faculty; however, because course guides are also linked on portal pages, and some people outside the course will inevitably use them, authors should also make an effort to adhere to general design principles to ensure some consistency with the rest of the site.

Tips for Course Guides

  • Rationale:  if there is a relevant research guide determine if is there enough new and unique content to justify a course guide.
  • Profile: essential to have a profile box with the appropriate subject specialist on all course guides. It might also be relevant to add details of other subject specialists who might assist (especially for cross disciplinary topics).
  • Instructor Collaboration: important to work carefully with the course instructor. Make sure that you obtain a copy of the course syllabus first.
  • Guide Title: the title of the course guide should correspond closely to that of the course, and should include the course number.
  • Citation Style/Tools: if a major assignment for the course is a research paper, consider including a tab/box on the appropriate bibliographic citation style and/or tools.