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Media & Design Center - Labs, Software & Equipment: WordPress

WordPress Quick Start Guide

Getting started with

All faculty, staff, and students of UNC-Chapel Hill can create up to five (5) WordPress sites on  

To begin, you can click on the Log In text in the upper right hand corner of the screen (see screenshot below) or click on the Create Your Site button on the screen.  You will be asked to login with your Onyen and password.

Screenshot of the main page on


You will be asked questions concerning your site.  Two of the questions deal with the site name and site address.

Site name - the name of your website which will appear on the tab for page in the browser and will be used by search engines to index your site.  In the screenshot above it is highlighted in a rectangle.  This can be changed if desired.

Site address - this is the part that will be found after the in the address bar.  In the screenshot above, it is at the end of the yellow arrow.  This cannot be changed.  Once you decide on an address, it is permanent until the site is deleted.

Once the site has been created, you will receive an email with a link to your new site.  

Using the Dashboard

Welcome to the dashboard of your new site!  Along the left hand side of the screen is a menu of options for working with your site.  This first section deals with what information or images you are presenting to your visitors.  The first four options are:

Screenshot of the first section of the dashboard menuPosts - Where you can create blog posts for your site.  Blog posts will include the date created in the URL.

Media - This is your media library which holds your images, documents, and media files.  You are limited to media files under 10MB in size.

Pages - These are used for information that is fairly static on your site.  Pages are used to create about me, contact, and other content that does not change frequently.

Comments - If allowed, here is where you can view all the comments made about your blog posts.  You can edit and delete comments from this menu item.

The second section of menu items deals more with how the site looks, functions, and who can access the site.  The options in this section include:

Screenshot of the bottom menu options found on the left side of the dashboard in WordPressAppearance - What will the site look like?  Will there be menus and how will they be structured?  These are all part of the appearance menu.

Plugins - have a set of plugins you can add to your site to add functionality.  These include adding forms, setting up tables, having your site in different languages, and more.  While WordPress does offer many more plugins, you are limited to just those within this menu.  If you find you really need a plugin and think it would benefit the UNC community, you can visit and make an inquiry.

Users - Users are who you allow to either access the site or edit the site.  If a page is public, anyone can see the site.  You can limit the site to just those who have an account on the site.  You can also grant editing rights to those users if desired.

Tools - Allows you to export your site or delete your site when ready.  You can also import a WordPress site.

Settings - Here you can set the timezone, rename your site, or set the site to only be viewable by users with accounts on the site.

Setting the appearance

Screenshot of the appearance menu selected and the fly out menuWithin the Appearance menu is where we find Themes.  WordPress uses themes to set the look and feel of a website. has a limited number of themes available for use.  One of these themes is Heelium.  If your site is for a UNC affiliated club or program, use the Heelium theme.  If the site is for personal use, select whatever theme works for you.

When you hover over a theme, you will see buttons for theme details, activation, and live preview.

Screen shot showing the buttons for theme details, activation, and live preview when the mouse is hovered over a theme on the Appearance menu.

Theme details - will give you synopsis from the developer of the theme what types of websites it is best used for.  Information on the accessibility of the theme, number of columns, and widgets is also included.

Activate - this will make the theme your website look and feel.

Live Preview - will let you look at your site in that theme before you activate it.

Once you activate the theme, a new button appears called Customize.  There are two major areas you need to address:  1) setting up the homepage, and 2) adding a header image to your site.

Setting the Homepage

Screenshot of the homepage setting menu in customizeWhen WordPress was created, its main objective was to be a blog.  As time passed, many found that WordPress also makes a great website. 

On the Homepage Settings menu, you have two choices for how your homepage displays.  The default is that it will show the latest blog posts.  You can change this to show just a static page.  When you do, you will see two new options. 

The first is setting which page will be the homepage.  You can select an already created page or add a new page.  You will then give the page a title. 

You are then asked to set the main posts page, which will display the blog posts in reverse chronological order.  The Sample Page is already set to be the blogs page.  You can rename this page, or you can create an entirely new page.

Setting the Site Identity

Screenshot of the site identity menu option under customizeThe Site Identity option allows you to set a title and logo which will appear on each page of your site.  Usually the site title and name (which you set when you created the site) are the same.  If you want a different name to show on the pages, you can set it here.  This is usually not a good idea.  For consistency the site name and title should be the same. 

You can also create a tagline for your site.  Note the checkbox for display site title and tagline just below where you type in the tagline.  You can uncheck this and your title and tagline will not appear on your site.  If you want the site title, but not the tagline, just leave the tagline blank. 

Another option you can set on this screen is a logo image for your site.  The logo will appear on all pages.  WordPress will give you the optimal size (width and height) for the image.  

What is a site icon?

A site icon appears on the tab within the browser next to the site name.  This image is very small (512 pixels x 512 pixels). If you do not add a site icon, the default is the WordPress logo (a white W with a blue background).

WordPress Tutorials

Classic Editor

Easy WP Guide


Block Editor

Learn WordPress

Easy WP Guide

Adding media to your site

Media & Design Center Staff

The Media & Design Center staff are available to answer your questions on using equipment, finding films, and creating posters or podcasts!  

Need instruction for your students in the Adobe Creative Suite or WordPress? We can help!


Media & Design Center
Undergraduate Library
CB# 3942
Chapel Hill, NC 27599