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What is a section index?

In CMS, a Section Index refers to a special kind of site map that is sometimes known as a table of contents or "jump-to" links for the current page.

The Section Index contains links to each content element within the current page. It is an outline of the page and is most often found at the top of a Web page.

If you've worked with HTML previously, you might associate the Section Index with the "page anchor" concept that enables visitors to jump to a lower part of the page.

This page has a Section Index at the top and each content element in the page is marked with a paragraph marker and a blue dotted line to help you connect the Section Index parts to the content elements.

Why insert a section index?

The Section Index allows visitors to quickly identify if an answer to their question is likely to be located on the current page.  It is especially important in a page where a visitor must scroll down more than once or twice to reach the end of the page.

Using a Section Index instead of manually creating a list of links will save you a lot of work and will ensure that the link list remains in sync with the actual content elements in the page.

How to insert a section index

  1. Insert a new content element
  2. Select a content type  Sitemap
  3. If prompted to select a position for the content element, position the element at the top of the page
  4. Enter a Header for the Section Index
  5. From the Menu type menu, select Section Index (page content marked for section menus)
  6. Save and close

Hide a link from the index

The section index will be automatically generated using text from the Header field of each content element within the page.

To prevent a content element from appearing in the list,

  1. On the Access tab for the content element,
  2. uncheck the Show in Section Menus checkbox
  3. Note: The section link will appear in the section index, even in the workspace preview, until it is published
  4. Save and publish the content element as usual

Display index link without a heading in the page

To create a link in the section index list to a content element but avoid seeing a big heading in the page,

  1. On the General tab,
  2. set the Header > Type drop-down menu to hidden
  3. Set the Header field as usual
  4. Save and publish the content element as usual

How to add page anchors?

If you have used other HTML editing tools, you may have inserted page anchors before.

In CMS, page anchors are automatically created for you with each content element.

To create a "jump-to" point, or anchor, in the page, you should put the content into another content element. This means if you want four sections on the page--A, B, C, and D--there should be (at least) 4 content elements in the page with each header A, B, C and D.


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North Dakota State University
IT Help Desk: +1 (701) 231-8685
Physical address: IACC 206, 1320 Albrecht Blvd., Fargo, ND 58102
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Last Updated: Wednesday, December 11, 2013 12:04:16 PM