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Essential Components


Common components used consistently across University of Minnesota websites:

  • Create consistency in design
  • Improve visitor experience
  • Increase accessibility
  • Reduce costs and time associated with design and development

You are strongly encouraged to use the following five essential components to aid in creating consistency across University websites.

Unit/Site Identity

The unit/site identity is a clear indication of what part of the overall U of M web presence your visitor is viewing. The information contained in this section of your page should quickly allow visitors to place themselves. It can give them a sense of hierarchy and can briefly explain the purpose of a site when necessary.


At launch, Folwell includes a horizontal dropdown menu option with a mobile menu. In progress are two additional menus:

  • Mega menu
  • Vertical

All menus are designed to be fully responsive and meet accessibility requirements, including contrast checks, tabbing and arrow navigation, and aria roles.


The Open Sans font for Folwell was chosen to address readability. It includes a wide number of font styles, and offers a wide array of special characters. It is a free Google font.


Folwell offers a standard text link design that includes an underline, a mouseover effect, and a visited state style.


Color is used intentionally throughout the Folwell design system to clearly represent the University's brand and our commitment to web best practices.

More About Folwell Essentials


Using On-click BehaviorUsability and Accessibility