FAQ

  1. What is WordPress Blog?
  2. Should I use WP blog or ELMS campus pack blog?
  3. How can I request a blog?
  4. Who can I contact with questions?
  5. What is the URL for my blog?
  6. How do I access the WordPress “dashboard”?
  7. How can I edit the title or tagline of my blog?
  8. How do I change the theme?
  9. How do I enable/disable comments?
  10. How do I moderate comments before they are seen publicly?
  11. How can I delete/disable my blog?
  12. How can I add users as editors, authors, or contributors?
  13. How can I increase my blog quota?
  14. How can I create and publish a page or post?
  15. How do I insert images in a blog page?
  16. What are “categories” and “tags” and how do I create each one?
  17. How do I import my content from other WP blog?
  18. How do I password-protecte a blog pages?

 

1.     What is WP blog

UMD Blog is built on WordPress MultiUser platform, a free, open-source package hosted by Edublogs.  It is available to all students, faculty, and staff for personal journals, departmental information websites, or student organization sites, to name a few potential uses.

2.     Should I use WP blog or ELMS campus pack blog?

WordPress blogs are robust and open to the public for viewing and contributions.  WordPress blogs are not integrated with ELMS which can make grading a challenge. WordPress blogs are good for organizations and for research or academic activities that may span several semesters, and those uses that would benefit from public commentary.
CampusPack blogs are integrated with ELMS so students’ work can be easily tracked and graded.  Participation by constituencies outside of the University of Maryland is not easily managed. CampusPack blogs are secure and private to the membership of a single course space.   
Both WordPress and CampusPack blogs can be personalized with text, images, audio and video.

3.     How can I request a blog?

4.     Who can I contact for questions

Contact itsc@umd.edu or the IT Service Desk at 301-405-1500 for support.

5.     What is the URL for my blog?
When you request a blog, you will identify a name that will constitute a portion of the URL.  A WordPress URL will look something like: blog.umd.edu/YourBlogName (e.g., blog.umd.edu/UNIV200spring18).

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6.     How do I access the WordPress “dashboard”?

The control panel of your WordPress blog is called the “admin dashboard”.  From the dashboard you can change the theme, manage users, view statistics, and more.  To gain access to the dashboard:

  • Go to http://blog.umd.edu/YourBLogName/wp-admin.
  • Login with your UMD directory ID and password.
  • From your profile page, click on the “My Sites” link.  Click on the link to get a drop-down menu that lists all of the sites to which you are permitted access.
  • Hover your mouse over the site name you wish to access to reveal a drop-down list of selectable features.
  • Select “Dashboard”.  This action yields the Dashboard page with a navigation bar.

7.     How do I edit the title or tagline of my blog?

See “Change Blog Title and Tagline” for details.

8.     How do I change the blog theme?

There are 20 themes available for you to use.  You can change a theme at any time.  It is recommended that you use “Live Preview” before making any theme change permanent.

  1. Go to the admin dashboard.
  2. Select the “Appearance” link.
  3. Choose “Themes”.
  4. Preview a theme by selecting “Live Preview”.
  5. Click the “Activate” link to select a theme.

If you develop your own theme, contact itsc@umd.edu with a request that it be evaluated for use.

9.     How do I enable/disable comments?
Comments can be enabled or disabled at any time.  Comments allow persons viewing your blog to leave a note about something you have posted.
See “Enable and Disable Comments on Published Posts and Pages” and “Enable and Disable Comments on Future Posts and Pages” for details.

10.  How do I moderate comments before they are seen publicly?

You may wish to approve comments before they appear to other in your blog.   This can be useful if your blog topic is controversial, for instance. You can screen commenters the first time they post, or you can approve all comments.  See “Moderating Comments” for more information.

11.  How can I delete/disable my blog?

Requests to delete or disable a blog should be sent to itsc@umd.edu with a Subject line: Disable “blogname”.  Once a blog is deleted, it cannot be retrieved.  Back up blog content before deleting it.

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12.  How can I add users as editors, authors, or contributors?

When you request a blog, you are enrolled with the role of “Administrator”.  As an administrator you can add and remove users and assign them any one of the following roles:  editor, author, contributor or subscriber. See “User Role Overview” for definitions of the five user roles in a WordPress blog.

  1. From the admin dashboard navigation menu, select “Users”.
  2. Select “Blog & User Creator” from the drop-down menu.
  3. Select “Add Existing Users” from the top tab; individuals must be identified using their UMD directory ID.
  4. Enter the UMD email address of a new user.
  5. Assign the user a role by selecting the role type from the drop-down menu under their email address.
  6. Repeat these steps until you have added all users to the blog by clicking on the add more button.
  7. Click on the “Submit” button to finalize the user enrollments.

13.  How do I increase my blog quota?

Each new blog is allotted 500mb of blog server space.  To increase thequota for your blog, contact itsc@umd.edu with a Subject line: Increase WordPress blog quota.

14.  How can I create and publish a page or post?

Blogs are composed of two main content structures—pages and posts.   Pages comprise the information that does not change frequently and that does not generally elicit comments.   Pages typically have content themes such as “About”, “Contact”, “Guidelines for Posting”.
Posts are content pieces that change frequently and to which visitors may provide comments.   See “Publishing a Page” and “Publishing a Post” for details.

15.  How do I insert images in a blog page?

There are three ways to insert an image into a blog page:  upload the image from your local computer, provide a URL, or use your WordPress blog media library.   The media library is a repository within the blog where you can upload images, video, audio, and more. It is the best option for linking digital media content to multiple areas of the blog.   See “Media” for information about numerous options for integrating media in pages and posts.

16.  What are “categories” and “tags” and how do I create each one?

Categories are used to classify subjects or to organize blog content.   Tags are used to identify keywords throughout the blog (for searching purposes).   Categories are usually defined by students’ names (e.g., John Smith, Joy Hardy) or names of group projects, or research interests or topics to which students can be assigned.  See “Categories and Tags on Posts” for detailed information.

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17.  How do I import content from another blog?
If you have a WordPerss blog hosted somewhere else, you can migrate the content to your UMD blog space by importing content that was exported as an XML file from the remote host.   See Edublog’s detailed instructions for assistance.

18.  How can I create a password a protected blog page
By default, anyone can view posts and pages in your blog.   This may be problematic if you have content that should remain private, such as student essays, photos or drafts.   To restrict who can view the content of a blog page you can create a password for a post or page (not that there is no way to password protect an entire blog).  See “Password Protecting Posts and Pages” for details.

More help for your use and customization of the Edublog WordPress blog can be found by visiting the Edublog User Guide.