1. Getting to know the WordPress dashboard

The dashboard is where you control all of the behind-the-scene details of managing your WordPress site.

  • When you log into a self-hosted WordPress site, the first thing you will see is the WordPress dashboard home screen. The dashboard appearance changes a little with each major upgrade of the software. (We are currently on version 4.x.)
  • When you log into WordPress.com, you may see the traditional dashboard or you may see the reader. This tutorial assumes you are at the dashboard home screen; here’s how to get to the dashboard from other places within WordPress.com.

You can see the dashboard only after you have logged into your site. This is the standard path to the WordPress login page:

  • http://yourblogname.wordpress.com/wp-admin
  • http://yoursitename.com/wp-admin

Dashboard overview

There are minor differences between the appearance of the dashboard in WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress, even if both sites are using the same software version.

Screen capture – WordPress.com dashboard

Screen capture – self-hosted WP

Dashboard content and functions

The dashboard home screen functions are wrapped down the left column and across the top of the window. You can collapse the left menu column by clicking “Collapse menu” at the bottom of the menu list. Make the menu visible by clicking or tapping the > arrow at the bottom of the list.

Information on the dashboard home screen is contained in modules. By default, there are five modules on this page:

  1. At a Glance
  2. Activity
  3. Quick Draft
  4. WordPress News
  5. Welcome


Video overview


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1. Getting started with WordPress

  • Set up an account at WordPress.com
  • Getting to know the WordPress dashboard
  • The WordPress general settings
  • The WordPress permalink settings
  • Your WordPress profile (and gravatar)
  • WordPress.com v WordPress.org
  • Self-hosted WordPress: finding a hosting company
  • Self-hosted WordPress: the 5-minute install


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