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Faculty Websites

Teaching and research faculty members can request space to develop websites for instructional purposes and to post course information, vitae and related material.

The University provides two resources for the creation of these Web pages: WordPress and LIONS Linux server.

  • WordPress is simple content management system that allows for easy creation and maintenance of Web pages without needing experience in HTML or other Web coding. Templates/themes and plug-ins are provided to assist with quickly standing up a new site.
  • LIONS is a Linux environment where you can manually hand-code Web pages.

Development of instructional/faculty sites in the University's Web content management system is not available.

Resources for Legacy Faculty Websites (not using WordPress)

A legacy website is one viewed at a URL like https://ww2.odu.edu/~jsmith or https://blue.odu.edu/~arogers. These sites are managed via the WebDAV protocol using built-in functionality of Windows or MacOS, or using specific software like WebDrive or WinSCP. Previously "WebEdit" or "ODUEdit" was also used but that is no longer an option. All new faculty websites should be built on WordPress but we continue to support existing websites on this system.

If the Center for Learning Technologies (CLT) will be maintaining your instructional site, contact them.

If you wish to continue maintaining your legacy website, follow one of the below links for instructions specific to your operating system.

Using WordPress

WordPress is an online toolset that allows users to create and publish their own websites. Old Dominion University has made the WordPress professional suite available to the entire campus community. With dozens of free, professional looking themes, extremely easy content management and a library full of custom plugins, WordPress gives its users the tools to create fully featured websites in minutes.

WordPress for Faculty and Staff

Faculty and Staff can set up personal sites that are hosted at http://fs.wp.odu.edu. Each person is allowed one personal site per MIDAS role. Your site will live at fs.wp.odu.edu/<yourMIDASid>.

You can set up additional sites for courses and organizations by using the Manage My Sites menu option on the admin bar in WordPress. Course and organization sites are hosted on the http://sites.wp.odu.edu network.

To create your personal site, go to https://wp.odu.edu/wp-login.php.

All web sites created using WordPress must be developed in accordance to ODU's Information Technology Accessibility Standard, which follows WCAG 2.2 standards.

WordPress Pre-Production System

In addition to the main WordPress environment, we have a pre-production environment available for ODU faculty and staff who would like to experiment with new features and plug-ins. Sites built in this testing environment are not public. In fact, access to the pre-production system is limited to wired campus computers and users of the ODU VPN. To log in and access the Pre-Production system:

WordPress Assessor Role

As more and more students use WordPress for coursework and ePortfolios, instructors and advisors need to be able to review student work. Unfortunately, students sometimes forget to grant access to their sites.

Teaching faculty and departments who regularly review student work can request an "Assessor" role that provides read-only access to any ODU WordPress site, regardless of the site's security settings. To request this role, simply send an email to itshelp@odu.edu with:

  • the name and MIDAS ID of each person who needs this role
  • the purpose of the request
  • the dates (beginning and end) that the individuals will need Assessor privileges

WordPress for Students

Student sites are hosted at http://student.wp.odu.edu. Each student is allowed one personal site per MIDAS ID. Student sites will live at student.wp.odu.edu/<yourMIDASid>.

You can set up additional sites for classes or organizations by using the Manage My Sites menu option on the admin bar in WordPress. Course and organization sites are hosted on the http://sites.wp.odu.edu network.

To create your personal site, go to https://wp.odu.edu/wp-login.php.

WordPress for Courses and Organizations

Users are allowed to create as many sites as they need for courses, learning, student organizations and groups that are directly affiliated with ODU. These sites are hosted on a third ODU WordPress network, http://sites.wp.odu.edu.

To create a site for your class or organization, go to https://wp.odu.edu/wp-login.php. Your pages will live at sites.wp.odu.edu/xxxx, where xxxx = a name of your choosing (within limits). Anyone who creates a site will be the primary owner and can assign others to be administrators.

Users looking to create personal pages should use either the Faculty & Staff Network or the Student Network.



Tutorials from ODU

Your first stop: wp.odu.edu/tutorials-2. This extensive support site, with tutorials geared specifically towards WordPress users at ODU, is constantly being updated. Here, you'll find information about getting started, using ODU's themes and plug-ins, managing your site and more. If you want to learn more about WordPress in general, see the tutorials below.

Tutorials from WordPress.org

These tutorials are largely text based, but still provide tons of useful information to developers. More tutorials can be found on the WordPress Codex Page.

Policies and Documents

The use of Old Dominion University's WordPress systems falls under the ITS Acceptable Usage Standards.

Retention Timeline

Site Type Removal Conditions
Student sites One year after leaving Old Dominion
Faculty sites One year after leaving Old Dominion
Course sites Two years of inactivity

To retain a site after you leave ODU, there are two options:

  • Migrate your site.
    There are tools available to help you export your site for transfer to another host, so you can take your site with you when you leave. See the "Migrating Sites" tab.
  • Transfer ownership of your site.
    The original creator of a site is that site's owner, regardless of any other users or administrators who may have been added. Course sites (or other sites with historical value) can be passed along to a new owner after the original owner's departure. It is the site owner's responsibility to notify ITS if a site needs to be retained by someone else so ownership can be transferred. Contact the ITS Help Desk at itshelp@odu.edu.

Storage Capacity

  • Individual file uploads are limited to 500 MB. Users are encouraged to use OneDrive, Google Drive, or other similar services for data sharing.
  • Sites are allowed to take a maximum of one GB of storage space.
  • These data caps can be raised by contacting wordpress@odu.edu. Please provide documentation or information to justify your needs.

Embedding Videos

To save space in WordPress, upload videos to Kaltura and embed them on your WordPress site:


In an effort to make technology accessible to people with sensory or physical impairments, all websites that are created must follow ODU's Information Technology Accessibility Standard. WordPress has more information about accessibility, if you need additional resources.

Requesting New Plugins and Themes

Faculty and staff can request specific plugins and themes by submitting a request through ITS Help Online. Within three days, the new plugins will be added to the pre-production system where they can be tested by other faculty and staff members. (The pre-production system can be accessed at http://wp.pprd.odu.edu from on campus or through the ODU VPN.)

After plugins have been thoroughly tested in the pre-production environment for at least two weeks, they can be moved to the live production environment for everyone to use. ITS will move all new themes and plugins from pre-production to production at the beginning of every semester, and at the halfway points of Fall and Spring semesters. In order to limit service disruptions, security updates will be the only changes applied to the production system during the semester periods.

ITS will add all plugins that are requested, even if they are similar to ones that already exist on the network. Plugins that are not used for over 12 months will be disabled, and plugins with minimal usage could be removed after two years.

To view a list of available plugins and themes on the ODU WordPress system, log into your ODU Google account with your MIDAS ID and view this doc.

Contact Forms

Contact Form 7 is a handy WordPress plugin that allows visitors to contact you directly from your WordPress site while also protecting your site from spam.

Migrating TO the WordPress network at ODU

Do you already have a WordPress site that you'd like to migrate to ODU's network? Or maybe a standard html page that you'd like to transfer to WordPress? WordPress makes it pretty easy to import content from a wide range of sources. Use the tools at the right to export your current content and import it into your new ODU site.

Migrating FROM the WordPress network at ODU

When you leave the University, you can take your personal WordPress content with you. To keep your site after you leave, you'll need to export your information and upload it to another server. The tools to the right can help with that, too.

Why WordPress?


Information about requesting and accessing a LIONS account is available at the Unix/LIONS page.

Add Your Faculty Website to your University Profile Page

A Faculty Activity System profile is required to add a website link to your University profile page.

  1. Log into the Faculty Activity System.
  2. On the Activities Database Main Menu, select "Personal and Contact Information" under the General Information heading.
  3. Scroll down until you see the "Personal Website" box.
  4. If you already have websites listed, click the ADD button next to the dropdown at "Add another Personal Website."
  5. Enter the title you would like to have for your website in the Website Title field.
  6. Enter the full URL (midasid.wordpress.com, for example) for your faculty website in the Website URL field.
  7. Scroll to the bottom and press "Save and Return."

Changes made in the Faculty Activity System will take 24 to 48 hours to process and appear on the live website.

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