Carnegie Mellon University

Web Guidelines

Carnegie Mellon University's web design improves functionality and heightens the impact of the university's digital space, while building consistency across university websites. University Communications & Marketing is constantly working to review and update existing web policies and standards as the web evolves. Find ways to improve your site's experience: review Web Best Practices.

Questions? Contact us at

CMU Content Management System (CMS)

Computing Services and University Communications & Marketing offer a hosted CMS and provide support for official units to create and maintain their own websites. More than 300 sites are hosted within the centrally maintained CMS, at no cost to individual units. To stay up-to-date on CMS upgrades and news, join the "CMS announce" distribution list.

Custom Sites Outside of Offered CMS

If you choose to build your website outside of CMU's CMS, please contact the University CMS team to discuss important technical, design and maintenance considerations


File Types


Web images should have a resolution of 72dpi (dots per inch). Use JPG for photos and PNG for graphics. Other acceptable file types include GIF and SVG.

Oversized Photos

screenshot of a homepage hero

High resolution photos should only load for desktop visitors. Extravagant imagery increases load time and deters mobile visitors.


screenshot of a compressed image

To improve load time and cut bandwidth consumption for visitors to your website, compress all images. We recommend using and

Accessibility, performance & browser support

WAVE logo

Web accessibility means that people with disabilities can use the web. It ensures that all people can understand and interact with your website. We urge university website owners to provide equal opportunity to people with disabilities and be A and AA compliant. Read about CMU's web accessibility standards.

screenshot of navigation in grayscale

Convert your website to grayscale with Photoshop (Image > Adjustments > Desaturate) or use a CSS filter to check if actionable items look clickable for people with colorblindness.

pie chart of page load asset breakdown

Webpages should load fast. Check your performance using or YSlow.

For the best experience, aim for pages to load within 1 second; all pages should load within 4 seconds.

Image of Android logo and the Firefox logo.

Support modern, popular browsers including phones and tablets.

Social media Icons & Resources

Social Media Icons

Popular social media channels provide official icons; please use them. Flat versions preferred.

Address & Contact Info

It has become a standard to keep the address, phone number, email address, contact us link and social media icons for websites in the footer of every page. Visitors to your website will expect them to be there.

Email signatures

Electronic signatures can support the university's brand. Some suggestions:

  • Use Carnegie Mellon University's full name. Do not use CMU.
  • For ease of reading, use the default font of your email application or a common sans serif like Helvetica or Arial at 12px or larger. Do not use a decorative font.
  • Keep recipients from downloading superfluous files; please do not embed images.


Andrew Carnegie
Philanthropist & Founder
Carnegie Mellon University


Andrew Carnegie
Philanthropist & Founder, CMU
CMU Wordmark
(412) 268-2000
tree Please consider the environment before printing this email.

HTML Emails, Newsletters, Invitations

All digital collateral (e.g., HTML emails, invitations, etc.) must follow Visual Identity guidelines, and the Wordmark must be present and used properly.