This guide will help you create a usable, readable and well designed guide for Boston College. It lists standards, best practices, and guidelines to follow when creating and updating guides or webpages.
Research has identified several patterns in how users scan a web page. Some patterns are natural to a user, like the F-shaped pattern, but can also be problematic because important information may be skipped over because there is a cost to reading poorly formatted content.
Make your guide content easy to scan and comprehend with these tips:
"LibGuides" refers only to the web-based software package by SpringShare. The consensus at BC Libraries is that the general term "guides" is a category that refers to librarian-created web pages that are aids for subject- or course-based research; in this category there are "subject guides,", "course guides," "portal pages," and "how-to guides." The rest of the site is composed simply of web pages.
It is important internally that we don't confuse LibGuides (the package) with the pages created with that package, and important in communicating with library patrons that "LibGuides" not be used at all. (Think of "LibGuides" as being akin to "Microsoft Word." You would never refer to a document created in MS Word this way: "Just read that MS Word I sent you.")
For consistency's sake, call them pages. SpringShare calls them pages and so do users.
The following Boston College sites provide introductory information on LibGuides and basic editorial guidelines.
The following sites contain resources for effective usablity and writing for the web.
The following are a small survey of University best-practice guides. (Updated 2023-05-16)