University of Iowa

Brand bar

All official university web pages—including college, departmental, and unit pages—are required to use the official branding bar, which links back to and includes the logo in gold on black, a site search, and space for one or two optional links. The brand bar is 40px high and has been developed with responsive styling. It is implemented on this site.

Logo lockups should not appear in the header of a website. Unit names should be included in on-page content. It is acceptable to use a unit-level logo lockup in the footer of a website.


For Drupal-based websites, a module is available that will place the branding bar on your site with no need to input code manually. More information about this module can be found on the Github README.

Other sites/applications

A Github repo is available with assets and instructions on how to implement the brand bar in web applications and non-Drupal sites.

Brand bar
Brand bar elements: the University of Iowa logo links to, one or two optional links, site search

Email templates

Dispatch is our email campaign service used to create and deploy custom HTML emails. Branded templates are available within Dispatch for use by all academic and administrative units. These templates ensure that your emails are branded consistently and properly coded to accurately display content across devices and email clients. 

Email design guidelines

  • Sizing: templates are 600 pixels wide to provide maximum visibility across email clients. 
  • Header and footer: templates include an institutional email header and footer with the primary university logo. Do not use lockups in the header or footer. College, department, or unit names can be placed as text below the header.  
  • Primary image: templates can accommodate a primary image beneath the header for visuals that are unique to your unit or event. Size primary images to 600 x 275 pixels and include alt tags for accessibility. 

Email best practices

  • Assume images will be blocked. Email clients commonly block images so important information should be built as plain text, not as a design element, to ensure it does not get missed. If you do have an image, make sure the alt tag is used for the accessibility of users who rely on assistive devices.
  • Highlight your message. Put your key message in the upper-third section of your email to make it immediately visible to your audience.
  • Use a single call to action. The focal point of your email should be the action you want the recipient to take.
  • Optimize images. For best results with text based images (such as logos), make your images png format.
  • Make sure your CSS styles are inline. Most email clients will not keep header styles so be sure to inline all of your CSS. No email client accepts a separate style sheet.
  • Test, test, and test again. While we have made every effort to ensure these templates will accurately display in all email clients, it is always a good idea to test your emails to make sure there are no formatting or display errors.

Getting started

New clients and account access are granted by Dispatch Support. You must complete FERPA training before you request access. Contact to request access.

  1. Login to Dispatch
  2. Use the Template Chooser from the Campaign page.
  3. Select the Curated tab.
  4. Once you select a template, supply values for all content blocks. See the documentation for each curated template on what type of information each content block requires.

For technical questions related to dispatch, email

Basic email template
Basic template
Newsletter email template
Newsletter template
Basic event email template
Basic invitation template
Event email template with primary image
Invitation template with image

Institutional email signature

Use of an institutional signature in email correspondence, as in the examples below, reinforces your professional affiliation with the University of Iowa and provides consistency to audiences outside the organization. When creating an email signature, follow the recommended guidelines below.

Instructions for email signature setup in Outlook


  • Use your signature block just once in an email conversation—when composing new email or when first replying to an email.
  • Use a consistent text style: 100% black text set in Arial 10 point is recommended. Display your name in bold if desired.
  • The left-aligned logo configuration scales best in email signatures. Insert the logo at the bottom of your email signature.
  • Set alt text for the university logo by right clicking on the inserted logo and selecting “edit alt text.” Set the alt text to read “University of Iowa logo.” 
  • Affiliations with other University of Iowa groups and initiatives should be listed as plain text. Badges and unique graphics are not permitted.
  • Pronouns of reference should be listed on the same line as your name so the relationship to you as an individual is clear. Visit the Trans@Iowa website for more information about pronouns of reference.
  • Unit lockups should not be used in email signatures. Unit names should appear in plain text as part of your contact information.
  • Unit specific URLs can be listed as part of the address block. Do not position them below the University of Iowa logo. Use the “add a hyperlink” button and add the web address in the pop-up dialog box that opens. This will make the URL a live link in your email signature.
  • Inspirational or other quotations are not appropriate and better suited for personal emails.
  • Keep the order of your signature information (title, address, etc.) uniform with these recommendations so recipients can easily find contact details when communicating with multiple individuals across the organization. 
Institutional email signature example with URL
Institutional email signature with example unit URL
Institutional email signature with affiliation in plain text
Institutional email signature with affiliation in plain text
Institutional email signature with pronouns of reference
Institutional email signature with pronouns of reference


All videos should end with the bumper footage below. A styling guide for titles and on-screen text content is provided as an .eps template for reference. 

Video end with primary logo
Video end with primary logo (download)
Video end with single-line logo
Video end with single-line logo (download)
Video lower thirds guide
Lower thirds .eps guide (download)

Digital signage

There are two services on campus for digital signage, Drupal (free solution) and AxisTV (paid solution). 

Drupal digital signage is a form a digital signage that utilizes a web page instead of software to display content on a screen. This service is free to campus. Contact the digital signage team at for more information.

AxisTV digital signage is a form of digital signage that utilizes software to manage the content playing on a sign. AxisTV is considered a full-fledged digital signage solution because it is a paid service. Contact the Enterprise Technologies Management team at for more information.

PowerPoint templates

The following PowerPoint templates are available to all faculty, staff, and students. The templates include multiple page-layout options, such as title slide, bullet slides, divider slide, and closing slide. These templates incorporate elements that are key to the university’s brand and can be easily customized for your content.

PowerPoint template
PowerPoint template (download)

Zoom Virtual Backgrounds

University branded virtual backgrounds are available for Zoom meetings. To set your virtual background in Zoom, follow these instructions:

  • Click download one of the background photos below and save the image to your computer
  • Login in to your Zoom desktop client
  • Click Settings
  • Click Virtual Background and Click +Add Image
  • Check the Mirror my video box. The image will look backwards to you but will appear normal to the person viewing your video feed
Black Zoom background with logo
Black background with logo (download)
Gold Zoom background with logo
Gold background with logo (download)
Zoom background with photo of pentacrest
Photo background of Pentacrest (download)
Zoom background with photo of Old Cap
Photo background of Old Capitol (download)
Zoom background with photo of seal on pentacrest
Photo background of Pentacrest (download)

Questions? Contact