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Site Structure and Tools

Updated at July 11, 2018

Salon & Encyclopedia


All audiences are skeptical of content they know is made to sell to them, especially prospective students.

The best solution is to not make content to sell, but to entertain, educate and inspire.

The digital salon will be an ever- changing source of creative commentary that celebrates MICA's local and global influence on art, culture, and community.

It's easier to believe what you feel than trust what you’re told. By publishing the full range of intellectual diversity and playful experimentation of the MICA population in stories, profiles, and visual essays, the new website will feel like MICA.

Capturing MICA’s authentic aura in a vibrant new digital salon will also lessen the institution’s burden to explain elsewhere what MICA is like.


The easiest tools for people to use online are often the most purpose-built: those made for easy access to information, like Wikipedia, get you to what you need promptly and provide you with the content you seek.

The Encyclopedia side the MICA website will ask most creators to refocus their energy on communicating what’s at the core of their offerings.

Encyclopedia pages will have a reading experience with less tangentially related promotional content keeping the user focused on the purpose of the page. Short word counts and straightforward sectioning will promote more legible and scannable content.

This approach doesn’t mean dry and without emotion.

Encyclopedias are content-rich and educational. Entries combine descriptive content with pictures, illustrations, statistics, and charts to create an easy to digest and ultimately useful experience.

Encyclopedia Structure

Topic = Normal webpage

Section = Landing page


Topics are pieces of content that have been identified by MICA and Fastspot as needing to be visible by name in both the Explore by Section and the A-Z Menus.

Each Topic will have only one Topic Detail Page and must be assigned to only one Section.

Topics can have multiple Subpages. Subpages are not visible in the Explore by Section or A-Z Menus, but will be visible on the Topic Detail Pages.


Sections are themes that are used to group Topics.

Each Section will have a single page that can use a limited selection of components and will automatically list the Topics that are assigned to that Section. Section pages should be used to introduce the group of Topics and give context to the importance of the grouping.

Sections are only visible by name in the Explore by Section Menu.

Additional Tools

Super Sections

Super Sections are used to group Topics regardless of what Section they belong to.

A Topic can be assigned to a Super Section when the Topic is created or edited. A Topic can be assigned to none, one or many Super Sections.

The Super Sections are:

- Academics

- Admissions

- Student Life

- Events

- Places

Reference Topics

Reference Topics are alternative names for a Topic or a group of Topics. Reference Topics will only appear in the A-Z Menu and will help redirect someone to the content they may be looking for.

Reference Topics will not have pages.

A Topic can have none, one, or many Reference Topics. Reference Topics can be assigned to a Topic when the Topic is created or edited.

Topic Types

Topic Types are categories of Topics that will require different content strategy and will change the behavior of the Topic.

For example, assigning a Topic to the Topic Type of Program will allow the Topic to be available in a categorized site search.

A Topic can only have one Topic Type. The Topics Types are:

- Place

- Program

- Offices & Services

- People

Authenticated Content & Roles

The new MICA Portal will be part of the same structure as the Public MICA Website.

This means that content that should only be available to authenticated users will need to be defined as such.

Both Topics and Sections that should only be available once a user has been authenticated will need to be assigned a Role when the Topic or Section is created.

A Topic or Section can be available to one or many roles.

Even though these pieces of content are only available upon authentication, they can still be assigned Reference Topics, Super Sections and Topic Types.