Preparing for Advanced Web Design

Crafting the course for advanced web design has been a challenge. I started in November and kept on revising it. On one hand, I don’t want to overwhelm the students with too many projects. On the other, I don’t want to give them an easy ride. Finding the balance to fit into the schedule is not an easy task.

Last night, I made my final decision to drop four projects to three, which will give them a bit more time to work on the coding. The focus will be on HTML and CSS. I will also introduce Sass since it is becoming a standard practice. I leave JavaScript as an option for the students to explore. Once they meet the requirements for the project, they could use JavaScript to enhance the interactive experience. I might introduce some basic PHP to make their work easier.

In addition to design and technical, content is an important part of web design. One of the required readings is Nicely Said: Writing for the Web with Style and Purpose by Nicole Fenton & Kate Kiefer Lee. The other required book is Sass For Web Designers by Dan Cederholm. I also recommend Learning Responsive Web Design: A Beginner’s Guide by Clarissa Peterson and JavaScript and JQuery: Interactive Front-End Web Development by Jon Duckett.

As for the projects, students will learn to create an online editorial experience, digital brand guidelines, and an entire design project from start to finish. For the design project, students will work together as a team to come up with everything from proposal to pricing to design to interacting with the client. It will be a fun semester.