WordPress Roles and Group Sites

One benefit of using WordPress is that you may create a Group Site by inviting others to collaborate with you and assigning them access rights based on their Role. By default, as the site owner, you are the Administrator and can assign rights.

Currently, we do not allow undergraduate students to create their own sites. However, a faculty, staff or graduate student can add an undergraduate student to his or her site and assign a role of editor, author or contributor to allow the student to participate more fully.


The identity a particular user assumes in a site is called their Role. A Role essentially describes the set of tasks, called Capabilities, a person is allowed to perform. For instance, the role of Administrator encompasses every possible task that can be performed within a WordPress site. On the other hand, the role of Author only allows the execution of a small subset of tasks.

Best Practice

As a best practice, only give your users the minimum role they need to accomplish their goals. While it may be easy to give someone an administrator role, she can do anything you can with that role including removing you. 

Summary of Roles

  • Administrator – Administrators manage the entire site. Administrators have access to all of the administration features including adding new users, changing the theme, modifying the menus, etc.
  • Editor – Editors manage content. An editor can publish and manage pages and posts as well as manage other people’s pages and posts.
  • Author – Authors can create and publish their own posts. 
  • Contributor – Contributors can write and manage their own posts but cannot publish posts. They can mark for review and an editor can publish for them.
  • Subscriber-PrivateSite – This is a special role for Private Sites. They can read Private sites, but not write or publish posts or pages.
  • Subscriber – Somebody who can read comments/comment/receive newsletters, etc. Cannot read Private sites.

Group Sites

More Questions?
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