Photo of cats.COMM 260, Principles of Internet Web-Based Design


Please check this page often for announcements of upcoming tests, assignments, cancellations, or other material you'd probably like to know.

Fall Semester 2007

Aug. 20--Welcome to the class with a little bit of everything about the web! We definitely go for breadth here, with a little bit of everything--but nothing in great depth. So my bet this semester (oh, maybe $1) is that no matter how much web background you have, you're bound to learn at least something.

Aug. 27--This week we'll be talking about roles of webmasters, planning and funding for web sites. Planning is critical to launching the kind of web sites people can use easily--and on the web, we're about as impatient as in traffic. Poorly planned web sites contribute to cyber road rage.

I plan to have the class roster set up by Tuesday. Be sure to check your listing for accuracy.

Sept. 4--This week we'll finish our general discussion of web planning with an examination of ways to profit on the web, and web architecture. Thursday we'll probably begin HTML. You'll want to finish reading chapter 1 and begin chapter 2.

Sept. 10--This week we'll work through some basic exercises using HTML, and talk about related coding.

Sept. 17--Tuesday we'll talk about moving beyond simple HTML to create web pages, and begin work on CSS. Thursday we'll continue work on CSS exercises. Also Thursday: quiz on HTML! Please study book material on this topic, as well as class notes.

Sept. 24--We'll be continuing work on CSS this week, and begin working with Deamweaver software. Next week we'll have a quiz on CSS, similar to HTML quiz. Practice for the quiz by reviewing the W3 tutorial, and taking the W3 quiz on CSS.

Oct. 1--We'll finish our combined HTML/CSS exercise in class tomorrow, and begin work on Dreamweaver. We'll also have a 10-pt. quiz on CSS; review the W3 quiz lined above to prepare. Note: next week I'll be at an American Journalism Historians Association converence in Richmond, Virginia, so no class next week. I'll give you a Dreamweaver project to work on during the week. Midterm exam will be Thursday, Oct. 20. We'll review the Tuesday before, but you might want to take a look at the midterm review questions on the resources page. Note: I've posted a new question on the class bulletin board.

Oct. 8--No class this week, but Dreamweaver exercise 3 will be due next Tuesday. Next week we'll finish Dreamweaver, begin writing for the web, and review for the midterm. By the way, I had the date wrong last week: the midterm is Thursday, Oct. 18.

Oct. 17--Sorry to be so tardy on the weekly announcements, but the conference last week put me behind. Midterm exam will be Thursday, as announced. I've put the HTML and CSS quizzes on the resources page for your review. I'll add a new question to the bulletin board next week for extra credit opportunity.

Job opportunity!

Below is a message from Patrick Nichols. Sounds like a good (apparently paid) opportunity for web minor students to gain practical experience.

I’m looking for a student to help out with our websites. For reference our main website can be found here:

I’m looking for someone who knows HTML and the basics of Photoshop. It would also be helpful if they are familiar with CSS and using code view in Dreamweaver. It would be a plus if the student is knowledgeable in PHP and MySQL.

Depending on the student’s experience and interests, he/she would be spending most of their time converting our research reports into HTML. If the student is experienced in PHP, we have several programs which need to be developed. For example, one project would be like a searchable telephone directory.

If any students are interested, please have them e-mail me at I would like to hire someone as soon as possible.

Patrick Nichols, Web Communications Manager
Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute
North Dakota State University, 430 IACC
P.O. Box 5074, Fargo, ND 58105
Ph: (701)231-7718 Fax: (701)231-1945

Oct. 22--Tomorrow Ludvik Herrera will visit our class to talk about how his business uses the web, and opportunities for students interested in working in the web industry. Thursday we'll go over the midterm exam, and begin learning about how to write for the web.

Oct. 29--This week. we'll be preparing written content for the web. We'll also begin work on web design fundamentals. I've posted a new question to the class bulletin board.

Nov. 6--This week we'll discuss principles of design as they relate to the web.

Nov 13--This week we'll finish web design principles, and begin talking about typography and graphics for the web. Instead of a question to answer on the class bulletin board, let's set up a COMM 260 Web Sites the Suck" page. That is, learning good web design by looking at bad web design. Submit your URL and why you think it's a "web site that sucks," based on practices we discussed in class. Note: No credit for nominating Ross's web site!

Nov. 26--Last week shortened for Thanskgiving, but we were able to get a start on Photoshop. This week we'll finish Photoshop exercises, and begin talking about web site accessibility. We'll also talk about the final capstone project

Capstone project (worth 50 pts): Your own professional web site.

Resume or vita.

About You. Short biography.

Class work you've done. Scan and link, or add web classwork.

Note: this is a professional web site! No party photos or snarky comments! Site is due (email attachment, including photos and linked documents) by last day of class, Friday, Dec. 7.

Job opportunity:

The company is, we're located in West Fargo. We manufacture sound isolation products (one currently, and a few new products are being developed/released). We would like an individual to work in-house on

-A new web site. not graphically more complex than the existing one, but it needs an overhaul/re-design. This would be pretty extensive.

-Other graphical materials such as printed brochures, banners, posters, etc.

I'd be happy to bring copies of brochures that we have now if that would be helpful.

Other considerations

-We are open to both persons seeking a career or longer term position, and persons interested in a transient position provided that they are around long enough to finish the web site overhaul (at least 6 months)

-We have talked it over and feel that $3,000 per month is what we'd like to offer. Its our hope that this attracts someone smart and capable.

-We have a new office that's very nice to work in

-We have some software (Photoshop, Illustrator, a few others that i'm not familiar with) and will get whatever tools are needed into our designers hands

A potential downside is that we hope to find someone before the end of spring semester. We can wait until the end of fall semester, however.

thanks much,

Brian Ravnaas
Green Glue Company
710 11th Ave NE
West Fargo, ND 58078
fax 701-232-1332

Dec. 3: Our last week of class! Tuesday we well sum up best practices in web design, and have some time for working on the capstone project, as described above, due Friday. Thursday we'll review for the final exam.

(Photo: Lily and Tigger, 2003.)

Class roster link. Class Roster.
Class resources link. Go to class resources page.

Ask the instructor link. Ask the instructor a question.