- Campus screens
- Faculty & staff dashboard
- What's On newsletter
- Events calendar
- Using LiveWhale Calendar
- Using EventBrite
- Subscribing to a department calendar in SFU Mail
- Request accounts
- Google Analytics request
- Social media content
- Request avatars
- Creative project request
- Web & URL requests
- Communication planning worksheets
- Using Campaigner
- Image library
- SFU facts and figures
- Social media
- Website tools
- Equity, Diversity and Inclusion guide
- Multimedia Consent Guide
- Formal studio portraits
- SFU News
- Brand guide
- Brand DNA
- Brand architecture
- Coat of arms
- Web applications
- Tone of voice
- Brand applications
- Communication strategy
- Editorial style guide
- SFU style
- Language and grammar
- General usage
- Territorial acknowledgements
- Obituary policy
- Media guide
- Project management
- Self-recorded video
- Social media
- Website content guide
- Website project guide
- Website Design Guide
- What makes a good story?
- URL request guidelines
- C&M staff
Tone of voice
What is SFU’s brand voice?
Our brand voice expresses our unique personality, reflects our values and excites people about what we do, and how we do it.
While we may work for diverse and distinctive organizational units, we are all part of an institution with shared values and a common purpose. Each time we communicate with SFU audiences, we’re influencing our reputation and shaping our brand. We’re not like other universities and we shouldn’t sound like them.
Follow this guide to apply SFU's brand voice to all of your communications. Whether you’re making a video or a PowerPoint presentation, writing an SFU News article, a social media post or a new web page, our brand voice should shine through.
Government: Officials and political leaders such as the provincial Ministry of Education, local mayors and representatives.
Funding partners and agencies: Federal, provincial and municipal government agencies that provide funding and cooperation for research, studies and other projects.
Community and corporate partners: Public and private companies, at home and abroad, that are interested in engaging with SFU and supporting our initiatives.
Prospective donors: Business leaders, corporations and organizations interested in investing in SFU’s initiatives.
Parents and families: Of current and prospective students.
SFU community: Residents and businesses of the Metro Vancouver area, particularly those located around SFU campuses.
Students, faculty and staff: Individuals who are currently studying, teaching and working at SFU.
Alumni: Graduates of our degree and professional programs who are living in Canada and around the world.
Our message framework
This is the big-picture view of who we are, what we do and how and why we do it.
We are Canada’s engaged university:
- We educate changemakers, visionaries and passionate problem-solvers
- We deliver academic and research excellence
- We share knowledge to create innovation that benefits society
We celebrate the diversity of people, ideas and cultures
SFU’s Brand DNA – our attributes
Brand voice writing techniques
Below is a very simple before/after example of how these brand-voice writing techniques can significantly improve your communication with your audiences.
The text represents a fictional SFU departmental homepage that does not yet use our brand voice.
The before text appropriately uses the active voice, with one instance of passive voice. But it frequently uses just two verbs: ‘to be’ and ‘offer’. It refers to SFU in the third person and only once references the reader (‘you’).
Overall, the text sounds informational and polite rather than conversational, approachable and friendly.
Why study at SFU?
Simon Fraser University offers an excellent environment for undergraduate and graduate studies. The institution is home to a variety of world-class research facilities, innovative programs, and world-renowned scholars.
More than 37,000 students are currently enrolled in in eight faculties, with approximately 30 per cent international students in attendance. There is a wide variety of program options. Diplomas, certificates, bachelor’s, master's and/or doctoral degrees are offered. Many programs offer experiential learning opportunities.
Learn more about why SFU is a world-class university and is the right school to attend.
Interested in applying? Review programs, admission requirements and the application process.