This course prepares students for the world of professional web design.
Through hands-on projects, exercises, and lectures students learn to conceptualize, design, and deploy successful client web sites. Course topics include intermediate web design concepts such as creative and usable interface
design, information architecture, web typography, compliant front-end HTML5, CSS, and jQuery development, responsive design methods and techniques, as well as user testing models. Additionally, this course examines the place of
technology and design within the context of a contemporary cultural, social and media landscape. For this purpose the course hosts guest speakers from the industry as well as related fields, and embarks on a field trip to the local design agency.
Stylin’ with CSS: A Designer’s Guide (3rd Edition)
Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability (Second Edition)
Other required reading assignments will be given over the course of the semester and will available on Blackboard. Should any other books or materials become necessary along the way one weeks’ notice will be given to allow students time to acquire the materials.
The Designer’s Web Handbook: What You Need to Know to Create for the Web
Seductive Interaction Design: Creating Playful, Fun, and Effective User Experiences
Stephen P. Anderson
CSS for Print Designers
J. D. Graffam
HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites
jQuery for Designers: Beginner’s Guide
Single-page Informative website
Client AU Design Program
Goal Prospective student recruitment.
Responsive event website
Client A local event organizer (choose your own)
Goal Increase event attendance.
Personal portfolio: carbonmade.com
Goal Show work for internship and job applications.
Weekly exercises are designed to incrementally build up to a final project. Their sequence corresponds to the lecture/demo topics, and fits directly into the workflow for each project.
Additionally, his method provides opportunity for students to receive feedback, ask questions and troubleshoot their work in manageable steps. Each exercise is graded as Complete or Incomplete.
All exercises will be submitted via BlackBoard unless otherwise noted.
To ensure that students are able to digest and apply new material, they need to complete weekly quizzes. Rather then serving as an evaluation tool, these quizzes act as an alternative study guide that allows students to quickly identify any gaps in their knowledge.
Each quiz has about 15-20 questions on the topic of the lecture and reading/video assignments. Quizzes can be taken on-campus or from home via BlackBoard system as a part of homework.
Students may use their books, notes, and any other useful resources while taking the quiz.
To accommodate for different learning styles reading and/or video assignments are given out for each class. Students are expected to complete these assignments prior to starting applicable work.
Most videos (~5 -10 min.) are hosted on lynda.com American University account. To access these materials students need to log into American University portal using their AU user name/password.
Readings assignments are taken from required textbooks and relevant external sources.
Applied Projects are weighted heavily, and must show all the intermediate steps of the design/development process.
Completion of all required projects is mandatory to pass the course. The instructor will lower the final project grade one full letter value for any
intermediate deadline missed (comps, research, etc). Always come to class with projects looking better than they looked last time.
A project is never finished and can always be improved. Any project not seen in progress will receive an “F” even if the final is delivered on time.
Means project is ready for the AU Design Expo. Work represents a finished portfolio piece. “A” grade indicates work which is clearly superior. It does not mean “satisfactory” or “adequate.” Projects and exercises must show clear conceptual thinking and successful use of design principles, craft (as it applies digitally) and technique.
The work is almost portfolio-ready. This grade implies work that is more than merely satisfactory. Such work will reflect an above average understanding (and communication) of the material. Projects and exercises will contain only minor errors in craft and technique.
79-70 "Just OK"
Satisfies minimum requirements. This grade indicates work which is competent, adequate, and satisfactory in presentation. Such work reflects effective understanding of the majority of the material covered. Projects and exercises will not contain excessive errors in craft and technique.
This grade is awarded to work which is unsatisfactory, not competent, or inadequate in terms of presentation or in terms of fulfilling the assignment. Projects and exercises which contain many serious errors in craft and technique will normally be awarded this grade.
This grade is assigned for failure to complete an assignment in both a timely and competent manner.
“Design is not the narrow application of formal skills, it is a way of thinking.” Chris Pullman