My Communities Menu

The principal navigation method between communities is through the My Communities menu, located in the upper left corner of the top bar. Clicking on it shows a menu with a hierarchical list of all communities one is a member of.

Once in a community, the menu title will change to the name of that community. One can click on the name to show the menu again.

Top Bar

The top bar is a three-color band on top of every page within ECS. The darkest band on top houses the community menu and the profile menu. The middle band shows community feature tabs when one is inside a community, and the grey tertiary navigation band shows feature details, such as content filter (active vs. archived discussions, for example), sorting/filtering controls, and actions one can perform for the selected feature. The tertiary navigation band also houses the search box on the far right.

Tab Bar

When viewing any page within a community, the tab bar shows all accessible features of that community.

Home tab will always be the first active tab when one opens a community through My Communities menu.

Discussions – click on this tab to show all active discussion threads, sorted chronologically – most recent updated discussion first.

Library – browse the community library.

Calendar – calendar of events of interest to community members.

Members – a list of all community members, a who is who of this community.

Tasks – task list with task assigned to community members.

Inbox – a list of all incoming email messages. This is only visible to a community leader.

Settings – only visible to a community leader, this link opens community settings dialog.

A community leader might have decided to disable certain content types in a community, or prevent the membership list from showing. Only tabs for enabled features will be visible.

Home tab, however, is always visible.


The Directory shows all communities within ECS that welcome participation from new members. A community leader can decide not to expose the community in directory – in that case, it’s existence would not be obvious to users browsing through community directory.

Community directory is publicly visible – one does not have to be ECS user to browse the directory. This also means that the directory will be indexed by search engines, and will appear in their search results. If you are a community leader, make sure your community title and description are well-written and useful in describing what your community is about.

When in community directory, use the paging bar on the top or the bottom of the page to page through the list of communities you can join.

When you spot a community you would like to participate in or explore its content, click on the join button to request membership.

Discover Other Communities

The Discover Other Communities button is visible in the footer. Click on it to jump into community directory and discover interesting communities you can participate in.

Community Homepage

The community home page has five sections in two columns. The larger, left column houses a welcome message, notifications, and latest content added to the community, broken down into different content types. Of the three, only the latest content is always visible; the welcome message is only visible if a community leader set it up, and the yellow notification bar appears only when the system needs to notify you about something. The latest content shows latest five of each content type added to the community, sorted chronologically. If there is no content of certain type, the grouping for that content type will not be visible.

The right column houses a short community description and community information. The description is the same description that is shown in community directory. Community information shows basic stats – number of members, contributions, and a number of countries the members come from – and other relevant community information, such as who the leaders are, whether the community is moderated, etc.

Sub-community List

If a community has sub-communities, a list of direct sub-communities will be visible. If there are less than eight sub-communities, the list will be in the right column. In case there are more, the list of sub-communities will appear under the main content area, in a separate frame. The list of sub-communities is only visible if the checkbox ‘Show list of sub-communities on the homepage’ is ticked in the settings dialog.

NOTE Due to a bug, if a community has more than eight sub-communities, after adding a new sub-community the larger frame of sub-communities will disappear. One needs to refresh the page to show it again.

Profile Menu

The top band of the navigation bar also holds the profile menu on the far right. The profile menu shows your email address (that is, username) that you logged in with. Click on the email address to display the profile menu, through which you can change email preferences, edit your profile information, clear your session and ‘remember me’ cookies, and change your password.