WordPress Dashboard

All the controls for managing your WordPress site are available from the Dashboard — the administrative page you are shown after logging in.

WordPress Dashboard

WordPress Dashboard

After logging in, you can always access the Dashboard from any post or page by clicking your site’s name in the menu bar. If you hover over the name, a drop-menu will appear that gives you direct links to specific sets of controls for themes, widgets, etc.

Click your site name to go to your Dashboard

Click your site name to go to your Dashboard

Hover over your site name to view Dashboard drop-menu

Hover over your site name to view Dashboard drop-menu

From the Dashboard you can customize your site settings, edit or create new posts and pages, upload pictures or documents, and much more.

Dashboard menu sidebar

Dashboard menu sidebar

Notice the menu sidebar is divided into three sections. The top section has two items — My Sites and JetPack. The second section contains menus for managing content — posts, media and pages; you will use these often. And the last section contains menus for managing sitewide settings.

Let’s look at the Dashboard menus more closely.

My Sites

If you have more than one WordPress blog associated with your user id, this menu would allow you to switch among them. If you have only one site, it is less useful, and only provides links to your home page and/or Dashboard.

Jetpack

Jetpack is a special collection of plugins and features WordPress provides to bring self-hosted sites closer to parity with sites hosted by WordPress on their own servers. Among the functions it enables are shortcodes for embedding media, extra sidebar widgets, subscriptions, support for LATEX Math markup, and more. Feel free to activate and configure any of the JetPack modules.

Posts

The Posts menu item gives you links to view All Posts, to Add a New Post, and to manage categories and tags (more about that later).

Posts menu

Posts menu

Media

The Media menu takes you to your Media Library where you can manage all the images, videos, documents and other assets you’ve uploaded. OR you can choose “Add New” to go directly to the form where you upload files from your computer.

Media menu

Media menu

Pages

Links to manage pages — View All or Add New.

Pages menu

Pages menu

Comments and Feedbacks

These two menus take you to pages where you can manage, respectively, all the comments and feedbacks posted to your blog by visitors. We recommend disabling comments on publicly accessible ACPS blogs; that is done using the Settings menu (below).

Appearance

Here you control how your site looks. The pull-down menu shows links to pages where you manage the Theme applied to your site; Widgets in your sidebars; Menus for navigation; a place to add your own stylesheet rules (CSS); and controls for your header and background images.

Appearance menu

Appearance menu

Plugins

Plugins are self-contained modules that add functionality to your site. From this page you can activate, deactivate and configure the available plugins.

Users

Your can modify settings for your own user account here, as well as add new users and assign privileges (Subscriber, Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor). Anyone who visits your site can view it, of course. If you want to grant others the ability to create posts, please assign the proper role when you add them. Generally, no one but you should be granted administrative rights. For more information on roles, see: http://codex.wordpress.org/Roles_and_Capabilities.

Users menu

Users menu

Tools

Includes Press This, a bookmarlet app; a Tags converter; and blog import and export functions.

Tools menu

Tools menu

Settings

Settings menu

Settings menu


Site-wide settings in several categories:

  • General: settings for your site title and tagline;
  • Writing: default settings for posts;
  • Reading: configure your site to act like a standard blog, or like a static web site;
  • Discussion: options for comments and avatars;
  • Media: options for images;
  • Permalink Settings: how WordPress builds URLs for your content;
  • Active Directory Integration: DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING HERE. These settings make it possible for you to log in using your ACPS credentials.
  • GDE Settings: Options for the Google Doc Embedder plugin.
  • Sharing: Optional configurations for social media integration.