Tips for Using the University’s New Home Page

Following are a few tips for finding what you use most often. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Joe Wills, director of Public Affairs, at

Whenever an existing Web site changes its look and organization, readers typically find it confusing at first, until they learn where the links they use most are located on the new site. The changes we've made reflect the feedback we received from user surveys that helped us identify users motivations, frustrations, and preferences. More than 17,000 e–mail survey invitations were sent to prospective students and their parents, current students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, and corporate partners. The survey link was also released through the media. We received 1,253 responses from 12 different user groups. For more information about the research and process please see the About This Site.

For tips on how to use the new Web site you can watch a video, download a PDF describing what's new, or read the tips below.

Tip 1

Start at the top.
At the very top, to the right of the new black and red logo in the upper left corner of the page, is where you'll find links to some of the most useful sites for completing common tasks: portal, e–mail, catalog, class schedule, campus maps, directory, and library. We call this the task bar. The search box is just below these links.

Tip 2

Use Quicklinks—it's new and it's quick
Here is a list of commonly used links for all audiences: Advising, AS, Disability Support Services, Office of Diversity, Employment, Financial Aid, Housing, Paying Student Fees, Study Abroad, Sustainability, University Box Office, and others. Located near the other frequently used links and the search box, Quicklinks provides direct connections to many important pages on the University's site.

Tip 3

Find the menus you use most.
The main menus on the new site have been organized in ways that reflect usage patterns on the previous site and the new focus on external audiences. In the colored menu bar at the top of the page, just below the logo, you'll find links to About Chico State, Admissions, Academics, Athletics, Student Life, and Give a Gift.

About Chico is a new site that gives visitors to the site a quick overview of the campus.
Academics combines the previous Degrees & Majors and Colleges & Departments pages and includes an Academic Facts feature.
Student Life presents an overview of programs and services we offer our students and includes a rotating short feature about opportunities to get involved.
Give a Gift
goes to the University Advancement site and reflects the increased necessity of raising private funds. Admissions and Athletics links go directly to those programs' home pages.

Just beneath the “big picture” on the left is the audience navigation bar: Prospective Students, Current Students, Faculty & Staff, Parents, and Alumni. Staff and faculty may want to bookmark the Faculty & Staff page, where they'll find links to resources for teaching, advising, research, and human resources, as well as data tools, forms, and facilities. It also includes rotating short features about faculty and staff.

Current students may want to bookmark their page, where they'll find links for resources for academics, employment and internships, and support services, as well as calendars and office hours of frequently used campus services.

The new Parents page offers our students' parents resources for those still making college decisions, helping their students once enrolled, and learning more about our community.

The Alumni page goes to the home page of the Alumni and Parent Relations site.

Tip 4

The big picture really is “The Big Picture.”
The large rotating photographs with headlines are literally big pictures and figuratively link to a series of short features that highlight what Chico State is all about, giving visitors the “big picture” of our campus community.

Click the learn more link to get to the short feature. The embedded menu on the right allows users to scroll up or down to a particular feature.

Tip 5

A little practice always helps.
As a test run, here are a few locations frequently searched for on our site and where you'll find those links on the new home page.

Search Term Location
career center Current Student page, Employment & Internships section
Quicklinks: Employment opportunities
health center Current Students page, Health & Safety menu,
Quicklinks: Student Health Center
campus map Home page, Top task bar (on all pages in the template)
Discover Chico: Maps & Tours
calendar Home page, Events section, links to all campus calendars
Academics: Academic Calendars
Current Students: Calendars
Faculty & Staff: Calendar & Announcements
Parents: Calendars
portal/Vista Home page, Top task bar (on all pages in the template)
payroll/benefits Faculty & Staff page, Human Resources menu
budget transfer forms Faculty & Staff page, Forms menu