Theologisches Seminar Elstal

4 comments | Posted: 23 December 05 in Featured, by Yannick Lyn Fatt


This site was featured on CSS Beauty on August 19th, 2005. So why feature it again? Quite simply, I love this site and it is a perfect example of a well designed website. And not just any website, oh no, a well designed theological school website. Gasp!! Yes they do exist and are not just a figment of our imagination. So lets get started, shall we?

The colours used for TSE are wonderful and refreshing and remind me of another featured site here at Godbit, Talbot School of Theology. They bring across that peaceful vibe that makes you want to look around the site some more. It is well laid out and it does not feel crowded. The navigation is also nicely done. But just as the design looks nice and clean, so does the code. The designers went with XHTML 1.0 Strict and it validates perfectly. Their CSS is also valid and their CMS of choice here seems to be TYPO3 (not to be confused with the RoR powered Typo).

At first glance I didn’t realise it (because the site is in German), but they offer some accessibility enhancements that deal with “Character size/colors” (which is in the top right and called “Schriftgröße / Farben”). This allows users to increase their font size and also choose a high contrast version of the site (simply by using stylesheet switching mind you) for those that need to. Also each page has a printable version (“Druckversion”) again done by stylesheet switching that strips out what you don’t need, like the navigation and background images etc. and gives you just the content. That is what you would want to print isn’t it?

One thing I thought was lacking from the site, is an English translation. Now I know they don’t have to do it, but it would be a nice and welcome addition for those of us who don’t know German. As you can see from my last point I might have missed a few things had I not translated some of the words to know what they meant. Lucky for me google has a site translator that helped a bit, however it did break the navigation (not sure why) when I translated TSE’s website.

All in all, I think a fantastic job was done in creating this site and I must say I’m quite impressed. Just goes to show that websites for churches/ministries and even theological schools can look beautiful and still be accessible to everyone while using Web Standards and not completely relying on flash and bad use of JavaScript on some sites.

Discuss This Topic

  1. 1 David Hemphill

    Hey, nice writeup. But where’s the link to the site?

  2. 2 Roger

    I googled it, here’s the link:

  3. 3 Nathan Smith

    I tweaked the link, so that the actual URL is visible in case people are printing it. I’m also a big fan of this site, having seen it before on some other CSS galleries. Typo3 looks to be a pretty solid system. Good pick Yannick!

  4. 4 Yannick

    Yikes, my bad. Sorry about that. Must have been still suffering from my lack of sleep the past few days when I posted this.


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