The DEN: Digital Signage


The DEN digital signage system is intended to promote campus-related events, programs and services to keep students informed and involved while cultivating the university community.



The DEN (Dorm Edutainment Network) audience consists of approximately 2,500 students living in the residence halls at The University of Montana-Missoula. The majority of the DEN's audience is composed of incoming freshmen between the ages of 18 and 22. Students have access to the DEN, free of charge, through permanently mounted, well-situated, displays in each residence hall lobby as well as through channel 3 (part of the in-room basic cable television service). Additionally, the DEN is displayed in the Griz Card Center and the lobby of Curry Health Center. Students occupy all residence halls throughout the academic year (late August through mid-May). In the summer months, residence halls are busy with conference attendees of every age, prospective students, families attending orientations, and younger students involved in various campus programs.

Submission Policies

We reserve the right to change, request changes to, or refuse any content. If we revise a slide, a final draft including modifications will be made available for review. The Director of Student Affairs IT, or an appointed representative, will be responsible for determining if content is appropriate. The following requirements must be met in order for a slide to be displayed:

  1. All content must abide by all university policies
  2. Multiple self-contained individual slides may be submitted at once, although they will not play in order.
  3. We will accept content as a PowerPoint slide (ppt/pptx), or as an image file (jpg/jpeg/gif). We do not accept animated or video content.
  4. An individual slide may be posted for no more than two weeks straight. Submitters are allowed to advertise longer than two weeks in one of two ways:
    1.  Submitters may request that the same content be posted again once two weeks have passed since the end of the last time that content was posted.
    2.  Submitters may submit a new, distinguishably different slide for immediate replacement of the original content
  5. Content submitted to the DEN should be retained by the submitter as we are unable to retrieve previous submissions.
  6. Content submissions will generally be processed and posted in the order they were received.
  7. Content submissions must be made at least four (4) business days prior to the desired start date.  We cannot guarantee submissions will be posted immediately.
  8. Content submitted without a University index account code is subject to a $5 Non-UM processing fee. This fee is per slide, not per week.

Content Review Policies

Content posted to the DEN is displayed for 15 seconds and will primarily be viewed briefly, at a glance, and from a distance. Accordingly, the following criteria are used to determine the feasibility of DEN content submissions. Submitters should consider the following when designing their content

  1. Use contrast between the text and backgrounds so that the text is easy to read.
  2. Font typefaces should be a rounded sans-serif typeface (such as Arial or Helvetica).
  3. Minimize text and clutter while using large fonts in order to grab the viewer’s attention.
  4. No more than 60 words should be included on each submission.  This is the maximum number of words an average adult could read within the full 15 second play time.
  5. Whenever possible, post a short web URL on the slide where viewers can get more details.
  6. Paragraphs of text are strongly discouraged. Instead, use short phrases and bulleted lists.
  7. Bold fonts are recommended. Avoid hollow or cursive fonts as they are difficult to read.
  8. The exclusive use of capital letters appears unprofessional and is not recommended.
  9. As slides must be readable from a distance, use large fonts sizes. We suggest 36pt and above.
  10. Slides should be horizontally oriented.  16:9 is the optimum width-height ratio.
  11. The optimal resolution for DEN postings is 1920x1080.

All posting requests must include:

  • Contact name
  • Phone number
  • Name of department/entity
  • Billing address
  • If campus entity outside the Division of Student Affairs, we require both
    • University billing code (also known as the index code)
    • University account code

Cost Per Slide

Slides running 1-7 days will be charged for one full week. Slides running 8-14 days will be charged for two full weeks.

Student Affairs ASUM Student Groups

Other University Departments

Off Campus Entity

Non-UM Processing Fee*

Free $10/week




*This fee is only used for parties wishing to pay by means other than a University index account code.

Slide Examples

These slides were made by the SAIT Media Team and illustrate the DEN guidelines.

Bad Slide Example

DEN Slide Bad Example

The text is difficult to read. Some of the fonts used are cursive and small, and since the DEN is largely viewed at a distance they will be impossible to read. Some text is also brightly colored. Colors such as the vivid blue used for the prices don't show up well, especially on a bright red background.Too much text is displayed. Slides play for a default time of 15 seconds, so information such as the hook paragraph and the featured band is unnecessary and distracts from the essential points such as date and time.Too many fonts are used. In order for a slide to look professional, a maximum of three fonts is a good rule of thumb.Some of the text overlaps with the pictures and is very difficult to read.The pictures used are very poor quality. The level of pixelation shows that they were blown up from much smaller images, and they look very unprofessional.

Good Slide Example

DEN Slide Good Example

The text is large and easily visible on a solid background.Only essential information is conveyed, so the slide can be absorbed quickly and easily within 15 seconds. A link is included to a web page that has additional information if viewers want to know more. Only one font is used. The pictures used are good quality. The slide has coherent design elements and an attractive color scheme, which ties the slide together into an effective and professional advertisement.

Slide Template

Den Slide Template

Here is a template of what will appear on the DEN T.V.s. Each slide will appear in front of a background, and the background and animation may change with season.

Past Slide Examples

For further inspiration, here are exemplary slides we have received from departments aroundcampus.

thumbCHC    thumbCS    thumbIT

thumbUCfilm    thumbUCmic    thumbUDS

Slide Templates

Student Affairs IT would like to provide our advertisers with a few templates that the Media Team has created. Feel free to use these as inspiration, or copy and paste your organization's information into them.

Blue Tilted    collage    thumbUDS    Grey Background with Maroon Border Template    Griz Maroon Template with Griz Paw    Blue Background Template    Yellow Joy Sports Template    Main Hall Black and White Template

Keep in mind these slides are most likely to be viewed at a glance. Short and sweet is most effective; images of people are very effective. Don't make the viewer work to read or understand your message. If you have any ideas, questions or comments for the DEN, please email the SAIT Media Team. Postings can be submitted via e-mail or by requesting the service through UM Solutions Center

Good Slide Grizzly Bear Photos © Copyright 2010 David Chudnov,