Editorial Specification Guide

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Document dimensions: The page size is 8.375” x 10.875” with a .1875” bleed.

Safety Zones: All non-bleeding content should be kept at a minimum of .2″ from the trim. Footers and headers should also be a minimum of .15” from the ad space. The two horizontal guides in the middle of the page indicate the gutter between half page editorial content and ads. They are set 5.3215” from the top and bottom trim. Guides are set up in the Master pages of our InDesign Visitor Guide Template to remind you of these safe zones.

Download the template at: http://campuspublishers.com/resources/

2. Design & Layout


  • The University name and logo
  • Identification: Visitors / Visitor / Visitor’s / Visitors’ Guide.
  • Year and/or Issue number to distinguish from issue to issue. 
The year can be formatted as 2018-19 or 2018.
  • Optional: University web url, social media icons, magazine-style cover lines highlighting what’s in the guide


  • The Disclaimer: Your file needs to include a disclaimer, which is typically found on the Table of Contents or Welcome page
  • We have recently added an environmental statement and logos to the disclaimer. The logos are in a pdf that includes notes on use.
  • The Visitor Guide includes Editorial pages, Ad pages, and Business Index pages. The file you send will need to include every page of the magazine, including the ad pages. The ad pages should be left blank except for your footer and/or header. Please make sure to have page numbers on ad pages as they will be referenced in our Business Index.
  • The Inside Front Cover and the last two pages of the guide should be left blank – no headers or footers.
  • Check phone numbers and test website urls to make sure no broken links end up in the printed magazine.
  • The Business Index will be created by Campus Publishers based on the advertisement contracts we receive. You may provide fonts and/or graphic elements for us to use. We keep it simple and try to complement your design and the university’s brand.


  • The pages in your file should match the layout in the page map we provide. You can start working on your design using the previous year’s issue anytime, but please be aware of the possibility that the page count may change.
  • We will send you a preliminary page map approximately 6 weeks prior to the editorial due date and the final layout 2 weeks prior to the editorial due date. If there are any major changes in editorial page sequence and/or page count, please know that we will allow the time you need to adjust the design.
  • It is highly recommended to have a few optional editorial pages ready in the event the page count increases.


  • The optimum resolution for images is around 300 ppi. As you resize images in your layout, please pay attention to the change in the effective resolution, which can be found in the Links > Link Info panel.


  • RGB and Spot colors will be converted using the U.S. Web Coated (SWOP) v2 color profile before printing. We recommend using CMYK colors only, especially the university’s official CMYK build for either coated or uncoated paper, depending on your paper choice.
  • Do not use spot colors unless you have tested and approved the converted CMYK build. To convert spot colors to CMYK, double-click on the color in the Swatches panel. Change the Color Mode to CMYK and the Color Type to Process.
  • Set preferences to display and output blacks accurately.
  • Text and thin lines should use the basic black build 0-0-0-100.
  • Background fills, large graphic elements and outer borders should use a rich black build. We suggest 40-30-30-100 or a similar build that does not exceed 280% total ink coverage.
  • Never use Registration black for anything. It has a build of 100-100-100-100 (400% ink density).


Special Considerations

  • Reversed text and logos: To ensure that light colors over dark backgrounds print legibly, avoid small and thin fonts and strokes.
  • Sometimes when type is outlined in InDesign or Illustrator, it automatically gets set to Overprint. Open the Attributes panel (in InDesign, look under Output) and make sure Overprint is unchecked.
  • Overlays, blend modes and shadows can create high ink density in CMYK files. Proceed with caution and check your ink density:
    Separation Preview > Ink Limit > 310.

For Illustrator files, such as maps:

  • Set preferences to display and output blacks accurately.
  • Make sure Spot colors are converted to Process CMYK using Swatch Options. Change the Color Mode to CMYK and the Color Type to Process.
  • To reduce the file size of PDFs, be sure to uncheck “Preserve Editing Capabilities” in the PDF options.

3. Export to PDF

  • File > Export. Export as a Print PDF.
  • Use the Adobe PDF Preset ‘Press Quality’
  • General: All Pages (not Spreads)
  • Color Conversion: Convert to Destination (Preserve Numbers), U.S. Web Coated (SWOP) v2
  • Output > Ink Manager – check to see if there are any spot colors. If so,
    check ‘All spots to process’
  • Bleed: Check “Use Document Bleed Settings”
  • The final InDesign PDF document size should be: 8.75” x 11.25”

4. Package Native Files

After approval for print, provide the design files for use in our Online/Mobile production and backup. Go to File > Package to create a folder with an .idml file and all images. Please make sure that there are no missing links and all images used in the InDesign layout accompany the file. The inclusion of licensed fonts is not mandatory. There are usually several rounds of revisions, so these files are not expected until after the hard proof is approved for print.

5. Deliver Files

Option 1:
Upload the final PDF and Packaged files to Campus Publishers’ FTP site.
url = campuspublishers.com/university-client-file-upload 

password = uploadCP80301
Option 2:
You may also use Dropbox, university FTP or another method of online transfer convenient for you. Share your link with: production [at] campuspublishers.com


For more information, please contact Sarah Miller, Production Manager
CAMPUS PUBLISHERS (800) 807-1013