YaleSites Upgrade project status – Fall 2022

October 12, 2022


As previously announced, Yale ITS and the Office of Public Affairs and Communication are upgrading YaleSites, Yale’s web-publishing service. This message provides the Fall 2022 update on project progress: 

  • The platform build has entered a new phase with the start of content development for the first proof-of-content site.
  • Resources and training materials are in development.
  • A Continued Drupal 7 Support Plan is in place for sites that do not upgrade immediately.
  • Community engagement through stakeholder awareness meetings and focus groups has been invaluable in gaining insights to inform platform development.
  • The YaleSites team will begin meeting with individual department stakeholders this fall to review individual website upgrade pathways and confirm key points of contact. 


About the project

  • YaleSites will upgrade from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9, a supported, secure, and accessible content-managed platform. 
  • It includes an intuitive and flexible design platform, providing a cohesive visual identity. 
  • The project is scheduled to begin rebuilds in the late summer and fall of 2023 (FY24.) 
  • Extensive training and resources will be available to site builders, authors, and editors.

Benefits of the YaleSites upgrade

  • An authoring and editing experience that makes it easy to create beautiful, accessible, engaging websites that don’t require technical expertise.
  • Pre-made templates and components that meet Yale identity standards.
  • Regular feature releases that will be automatically pushed to YaleSites.
  • A built-in accessibility checker ensures YaleSites will be inclusive.
  • Integration of analytics tools to gain insights into site performance.

Project status

  • The team has begun content development for a new YaleSites website that will replace yalesites.yale.edu. According to Franz Hartl, Associate Director of Web Operations, this much-anticipated phase marks an important point in the evolution of the project. “Since the project’s inception, our team has been focused on developing a platform that delivers an accessible digital experience worthy of Yale, and we’re on track to accomplish this goal. The YaleSites team is ready to begin piloting the platform by rebuilding yalesites.yale.edu as a proof of concept and letting that experience inform our process.” 
  • Training materials are being developed in partnership with OHO Interactive. According to Taber Lightfoot, Associate Director, User Experience, ITS, the creative agency is well-suited to the project. “In our search for a partner to help develop the resources YaleSites users will need to optimize the new platform, we were lucky to find OHO as their collective team experience includes similar work at peer institutions. They know exactly what information and formats provide the greatest advantage to users. We’re looking forward to a robust library of training materials and resources for the YaleSites community.” 

Community engagement

  • Several stakeholder awareness meetings have been conducted with IT leadership, communications partners, and academic administrators. Presentations included an overview of the platform and demos showing significant improvements to the authoring/editing experience, page design, and accessibility features. These will enhance efficiency and productivity among YaleSites users. 
  • A series of focus groups recently wrapped up. The groups met every other week over the summer, providing valuable insights that will enhance feature offerings and the overall user experience. 
  • The YaleSites team will begin meeting with individual department stakeholders this fall to review individual website upgrade pathways and confirm key points of contact.  

For more information, please visit the YaleSites Upgrade Program page. 


Contact the YaleSites Team at YaleSitesUpgradeProgram@yale.edu.