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Leading with logos

Logos work as visual short stories. In a glance, an effective logo conveys the brand’s history and purpose, evokes an emotional response and establishes an audience connection. Like Superman’s iconic S, one letter can tell an entire tale. While the UW’s signature logos can’t leap buildings in a single bound, they do capture the spirit of being boundless.

People recognize and remember our logos: the University signature, University word mark and block W. Collectively, they are the University’s signature logo system. They were developed after extensive research and are the only logos approved to represent the UW. Consistency boosts brand credibility, which is why they are only used within the parameters outlined in this section.

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Logos may not appear in any colors other than University brand foundational or spirit palette. Accent colors may not be used for University logos.


Note: RGB files are recommended for Microsoft Office use, while HEX files are good for web use.

Block W logos

Minimum size requirement for the block W logo is .25″ height or width. Use the block W with registration mark whenever the block W is used as a graphic element on retail merchandise or when used as a standalone graphic element on a poster, t-shirt, premium item, or other instance where the complete logo and school/college or unit logos are absent.

Department logo generator

The UW Signature Logo System effectively links our campuses, schools, academic units, and administrative offices with the University of Washington brand. Every member of the University community plays an important role maintaining logo integrity by applying this system consistently throughout all University communications.

This department logo generator allows individual units to construct a custom identity.

Each department logo will include:

  • Block W logo
  • Primary field of your choosing
  • Secondary field with the University wordmark
  • Tertiary field of your choosing

Longnames Stacked 1024x400

The Primary Field should be used to communicate a unit’s most important information to a specific audience. Primary Fields can include such information as: School or college name, department name, institute or program name, library, or office. Primary fields will be all caps.

The Tertiary Field is an optional field and can be used to communicate the unit, school, college or other affiliated department name. Tertiary field will be in sentence case.

Once you enter your primary and tertiary field content and click “download your logo,” you’ll get a zip file containing your departmental logo in the following formats:

  • svg (2-color)
  • png (2-color)

Note: We are currently beta testing this new tool. If you are not able to successfully download your logo, or if your department or unit’s name exceeds 37 characters for the Primary Field, please contact for a custom solution.

Logo Preview

Primary Field

Primary Field

Logo files may not appear exactly as they do in the preview. Download files to confirm.

Incorrect logo usage

The following treatments should be avoided in order to maintain the integrity of all UW logos and the brand.

Bad Logo Stretch
Don’t stretch or compress the logo. Resize it proportionally.
Bad Logo Color
Don’t change the logo colors. Use one of the color files provided.
Bad Logo Effects
Don’t add effects like shadows, gradients, embossing, etc.
Bad Logo Rotate
Don’t rotate the angle of the logo.
Bad Logo Crop
Don’t crop the logo.
Bad Logo Outline
Don’t outline the logo.
Bad Logo Busy
Don’t place the logo over busy backgrounds.
Bad Logo Fill
Don’t fill the logo with any images.
Bad Logo Font
Don’t alter the logo fonts.

Usage policy

The University logo systems were developed with extensive advice and consultation from the University community and leadership. The President and Provost of the University formally approved this system in August 2008 and continue to endorse it today.

It is the University’s policy that the block W Logo, University wordmark and combined signature systems are the only sanctioned marks for use across the campuses to represent the University of Washington in marketing, communications and reputation building work. No other marks or symbols may be used in conjunction with or to replace the official University signature logo system.

There are three types of signature systems:

  • University signature
  • Campus signature
  • Department signature

Minimum size requirements

To preserve the legibility and integrity of the block W logo and University wordmark within the signature systems, minimum size requirements must be observed.

Block W logo: In print, the minimum allowable width is .25“. For the web, 18 pixels wide at 72 pixels per inch (ppi).

University wordmark: In print, the minimum allowable width is 1“. For the web, 72 pixels wide at 72 ppi.

The minimum allowable unit of measure for all signature system logos is the width of the University wordmark.