I found McGovern's "Words that work: search words versus website words" article interesting.
Choosing the words we use to describe our content can be tricky. We need to use common terms in order to be found by search engines users and to be recognized by people browsing listings of our programs or articles. But there's the tension with also wanting to use the most academically correct terminology. And some terms have conotations we might want to employ or avoid. For instance, vo-tech or vocational-technical education are commonly used terms. But that's not the term used in the field. The Journal of Vocational and Technical Education is now being published as The Journal of Career and Technical Education. Which term do we use? It's important to know the purpose of the page and who the intended audience is. And how strongly the faculty feel about the term.
Writing Link and Heading Text is another good article that came across my Outlook recently.
While focusing on getting all our content correct, written to support readers who scan, and getting the text approved by others, how much attention do we give to the titles or our pages? The title needs to both identify the content to follow and be easy to find using search engines.
It's a common dilemma with magazine or newsletter placed online. A title that works in print might not work online. Do you use the title from the publication to support those who will search for that exact article using that exact title? Do you write a new title that includes key words? Do you write for the search engines? Does the title within the title tags need to exactly match the heading h1 of the page?
Does it matter if you think the page needs to be found by a searcher using Yahoo and searching the entire WWW or if it needs to be found by a searcher using the U's Google search? I think it does.
I want information about our research to be found by anyone and so I'll choose to reference the University's name at the end of the title. Example: How Young Children Manage Stress - Research Works - University of Minnesota. It probably doesn't matter to outside readers which department or college the researcher is in so I don't include that information.
I doubt that anyone outside the University cares about a program planning form so that title doesn't need to reference the University or college. It simply needs the key words a student might use. Example: Program Form for Science Education (M.Ed./Professional Studies).
Your thoughts? Do we have issues unique to the University? For instance should OHR make sure their page titles make it obvious they aren't part of the two academic programs in human resources? Do we need a naming convention for internal versus external content at the U?