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Environmental Studies

WordPress Options

The ENVS Program requires WordPress for students without current sites, as summarized here. But there are several WordPress options! The information below will help you make an informed choice.

  1. or There is a difference!
    • is the easiest to get started, as they administer the site for you on You just use it! But this limits your options.
    • (also called a “hosted solution”) is the most flexible and powerful, as you administer your own site on a host. You can set it up however you want, and build marketable skills—but you must maintain the site.
    • Our advice: if you’re ready, do a hosted site—you’ll build skills immediately. If that sounds like too much, do the easier for starters, then export your work to a hosted site in future. Here is one good comparison of the two, eventually recommending a hosted ( solution. 
  2. If you chose, we strongly recommend a paid vs. free plan to avoid ads and offer some customization.
    • Here are their paid plans; consider the Blogger ($3/mo) or Personal ($5/mo).
    • Note that, if you want the flexibility and power of a hosted solution via, you will minimally need the Business plan ($25/mo)! That’s way more than the typical hosted solution, so don’t do it.
  3. If you chose a hosted ( solution: Where to host?
    • has recommended hosts, and all are fine for starters. Or, if you Google WordPress hosting, you’ll see a wide array of options.
    • Most hosting plans are cheaper if you prepay for a certain length of time. Expect to pay maybe $8-$10/mo in time, with lower introductory rates.
    • Our advice: you can’t go wrong with most hosts. Most will walk you through the process, automatically install WordPress on your domain, etc.
    • Here is a step by step guide for getting started with a hosted site, including a discounted host option.

We appreciate your comments toward improving this guidance; just email