Week 15 and Finals Week: Wrapping Up the Client Project

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

I can hardly believe that the end of the semester is just a week away — time really has flown by! You’ve been a great class, and I hope you feel like you’ve grown as web designers and online content developers. With Exam #2 and the Best Practices Article behind us, we can focus all of our attention on the Client Project, which we will present to a panel of distinguished judges at our final. At this point, your team should be revising your site based on the feedback you received during our peer critique exercise and our team conferences. Here are a few areas where every team needs to focus:

  • Branding. Our clients want a site that feels modern and original, but we can’t completely ignore the university’s branding guidelines. Think about how you can incorporate the university’s logo, color scheme, etc., into your site.
  • Information architecture. The structure and navigation systems on your site should be logical and easy to use. Think about what information needs to be on the homepage and what can go somewhere else. Carefully consider the names you give your pages and how you refer to them in your navigation menus. Find or develop a system for filtering content by category or tag.
  • Sample content. Most of you have created a couple of sample “stories” for your site, but the more content you have, the more complete your site will appear to be. Having more content also makes it easier to demonstrate how tags, categories, and archives work. You can use “lorem ipsum” filler text in some places, but titles, headlines, pull quotes, and other featured text should be as “real” as possible.
  • Action items. Remember the personas you created at the beginning of this project? Think about what you want each of those people (and the larger audience groups they represent) to do after visiting your site. Make it easy for people to take action once they feel a connection to our project.
  • User feedback. Take some time during the coming week to conduct “Super Easy Usability Testing” with your friends, coworkers, and family members. Have them explore the site, watch what happens as they do, and ask them about their experience. Every user is unique, but if you conduct enough of these demonstrations, you’ll begin to see patterns in your users’ feedback — that’s where you want to direct your energy as you fine-tune your site.

During Week 15, we’ll hold our last class session and our final exam. Here’s a quick overview:

  • On Tuesday, we’ll complete course evaluations, discuss some guidelines for your final presentations, and draw straws to determine the order of presentations on Saturday. Between now and Tuesday, your team should be making progress on the list of items above, as well as any specific feedback I gave you during your conference on Thursday.
  • Our final exam will be held on Saturday, May 9, at 1:05 p.m. in 1100 Torgersen Hall. Your team will have 8 minutes to present your site to the audience, after which the judges will have an opportunity to ask you questions about your work. I’ve been impressed with how seriously everyone is taking this project, and I hope you’ll continue showing that level of professionalism at our final. Before you come to the final, please submit your team’s memo of transmittal and any additional materials (usability results, wireframes, screenshots of early drafts, client feedback, or anything else listed in your team’s MOU) by placing them in your team’s shared Google Drive folder (which should also be shared with me). Bring your individually completed “Team Evaluation Form,” which I will distribute on Tuesday, to our final exam.

As always, if you have any questions about these items, please drop me a line. I’ll try to be in my office as much as I can for the next week, so let me know if your team would like to meet during a time other than my official office hours. Good luck wrapping things up!

Week 14: Client Site Peer Critique and Team Conferences

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

I hope our peer critique exercise helped you identify some areas of improvement in your Best Practices Article. Next week, we’ll wrap up Unit #3 in order to focus solely on the Client Project until your final presentations. Both of our class sessions during Week 14 will be dedicated to that work. Here’s a summary of what we’ll be doing:

  • If you are taking Exam #2, it is due at the beginning of class on Tuesday. Please follow the instructions on the exam for submitting both print and electronic copies. We’ll use our entire class period to review and critique early drafts of your client sites, so be prepared to show your team’s site to the other members of our class and to a handful of special visitors (members of the oral history project team). Your site doesn’t need to be finished by Tuesday, but you should have more to show than a default WordPress theme.
  • Your Best Practices Article is due before you come to class on Thursday. Please follow the guidelines on the assignment sheet for submitting your article, and remember that you can publish your finished article on Medium.com if you’d like to. (If you’ve already decided to use Bootstrap or WordPress, don’t wory — those are both still good options.) During class, I will meet briefly with each team to discuss what you’ve done so far and what needs to happen during the final ten days of the semester. You’ll have the remainder of class to work on your client site as a team, so please come to class with a specific plan for what you want to accomplish.

If you’d like to meet with me individually about Unit #3, or as a team about Unit #4, please let me know. In addition to my regular office hours (T 2–5, W 9–12), I can make time to meet with you on Monday, Thursday, and Friday, if it would be helpful.

Week 13: User Testing and Online Brand Development

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

We have just a few weeks left in the semester and a lot we need to accomplish, so I’ve rearranged a few items on calendar and eliminated a few others. I think these changes will free up your time to develop your Best Practices Articles and give you more in-class time to work on the Client Project with your teammates. Please remember that your team needs to be making solid progress on your site outside of class, too. If you haven’t been meeting regularly as a team, that needs to change ASAP.

Here’s a quick preview of where we’re headed during Week 13:

  • On Tuesday, we’ll discuss various models for testing websites with users and consider some strategies we can use to “brand” our client project sites. Before you come to class, please read Chapters 7, 8, and 12 in Nicely Said, and “Super Easy Usability Testing,” by John S. Rhodes. In addition, your team should finalize the platform (WordPress, Bootstrap, etc.) and the theme/template you plan to use for your client site. (Remember: this is not a decision that should be made in five or ten minutes!)
  • On Thursday, we’ll conduct a peer critique workshop for the Best Practices Article and use whatever time remains for team meetings. Please come to class with a draft of your Best Practices Article in Google Docs format (so your peers can read and comment on it).

Finally, a few words about our second exam: Because we have a limited number of class sessions left, Exam #2 will be an open-book, open-note (but not open-classmate), take-home exam. More importantly, this exam will be optional, which means that you only need to complete the exam if you are unhappy with your score on the first exam. If you are satisfied with your grade on that exam, I will simply duplicate that score for Exam #2. However, if you would like the opportunity to raise your exam grade, you can take home a copy of the exam at the end of class on Thursday and submit it at the beginning of class on Tuesday, April 28. (Please note that although a take-home exam is likely to produce higher grades than an in-class exam, a higher grade on Exam #2 is not guaranteed.)

If you’d like to meet with me as a team to discuss anything relate to Unit #4, or if you’d like to talk through an early draft of your Unit #3 article, please come see me during office hours (T 2–5, W 9–12) or email me to arrange a meeting at another time.

Week 12: Information Architecture and a WordPress Workshop

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

With a finalized Unit #4 memorandum of understanding, your team should be making steady progress on your client site every week for the rest of the semester. I’ve scheduled several checkpoint assignments to help you stay on track, but you and your teammates will need to keep each other accountable, too.

During Week 12, we’ll pass two of those checkpoints, help you decide whether a content management system is right for your Unit #4 site, and lock in topics for your Best Practices Articles. Here are a few more details about our plans:

  • On Tuesday, we’ll think about the structure and functionality of your client sites. Before you come to class, please read the “Complete Beginner’s Guide to Information Architecture,” by Andrew Maier. (This article contains numerous links to other excellent resources, and you should spend some time exploring those, too.) In addition, your completed Unit #4 personas are due at the beginning of class.
  • You have two small deadlines on Thursday: First, your Unit #4 team should submit two rough wireframes for your client site. [UPDATE: Try to get a jump start on these wireframes before class, but they won’t be due until the end of class on Thursday.] Second, before you come to class, you should email me a one-paragraph proposal for your Best Practices Article. (If you want to submit two ideas, that’s fine — I’ll try to help you select the best one.) We’ll dedicate most of Thursday’s class to a WordPress workshop, learning how to evaluate and modify themes and plugins. You should have an installation of WordPress running on your personal site, so spend some time familiarizing yourself with the WordPress dashboard, the difference between posts and pages, and the process of switching themes and activating plugins. If you run into problems or find yourself confused, I recommend watching the “WordPress Essential Training” on Lynda.com or visiting the WordPress Codex and WordPress Forums. (Bookmark these sites! They will be your best friends if your team decides to use WordPress for Unit #4.)

If you’re having trouble getting WordPress up and running on your personal site, or if your team wants to talk about your client site, please come see me during office hours (T 2–5, W 9–12).

Week 11: Content Management Systems and User-Centered Design

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

Now that we’ve discussed the assignment details for Unit #3, the Best Practices Article, and Unit #4, the Client Project, you should begin making progress on both assignments. For Unit #3, that means selecting a topic and finding out what others have already written about it. For Unit #4, it means completing your team’s Memorandum of Understanding and studying the list of “inspiration” sites at the bottom of the Resources page.

For the rest of the semester, we’ll be working our way through the Client Project, and Week 11 will help us think through some of the “big picture” issues related to that assignment. Here’s a quick overview of how we’ll spend our time:

  • On Tuesday, your team’s MOU is due at the beginning of class. Please share it with me (if you haven’t already) and give me editing privileges so I can make any necessary revisions before approving it. During class, we will explore the pros and cons of using content management systems to power your client sites, so please read the following articles before you come to class: “Why Do I Need a Content Management System?,” by Blue Sky Designs, and “Designing for Content Management Systems,” by Rachel Andrew. In addition, we’ll be installing some CMSes on your Reclaim Hosting sites, so be sure to have your login credentials with you.
  • On Thursday, we’ll discuss user-centered design and begin developing user personas that will inform your work on the Client Project. Before you come to class, please read “Introduction to User Personas,” by Silvana Churruca, and Usability.gov’s overview of personas.

If you’d like to discuss ideas for your Best Practices Article, or if I can help your team in any way, please email me or come to see me during office hours (T 2–5, W 9-12).

Week 10: Introduction to the Best Practices Article and the Client Project

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

The drafts of your Responsive Microsites looked very impressive during our peer critique workshop today. I can’t wait to see your finished sites on Tuesday! As you revise your site, remember the feedback you received from your classmates — their reactions should be a good indicator of how your intended audience would perceive the site. If you have any questions as you wrap up your project, please let me know.

Once we put Unit #2 behind us, we’ll turn our attention to the two remaining assignments that will keep us busy for the rest of the semester: the Best Practices Article and the Client Project. Please read through the details of each assignment this weekend to get a sense of where we’re headed.

Here are a few quick reminders about how we’ll spend our time during Week 10:

  • Your Responsive Microsite is due on Tuesday. Please make sure that your project is live and functioning on your personal website and that your memo of transmittal is uploaded to your shared Google Drive folder (in Google Docs format) before you come to class. (Make sure your memo includes a link to your site and any Bootstrap templates/themes you used!) In class, we will meet our clients for the Client Project, so please come prepared to listen carefully and ask lots of smart questions. Last but not least, remember to complete the “Self-Perception Inventory for Team Roles” that I distributed on Thursday and bring the summary page to class.
  • On Thursday, I will announce the teams for our Client Project, and you will use most of our class session to hold your first team meeting and develop your Unit #4 Memorandum of Understanding, which will be due the following Tuesday (April 7). In preparation for this meeting, please read the following articles about working with clients:

As always, I’ll be checking email regularly this weekend, so if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Week 9: Wrapping Up the Responsive Microsite Project

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

At this point in the Unit #2 project, your responsive microsite should be almost complete, and you should be working to customize the text, images, and CSS so the site looks like your site, not just another “default” Bootstrap site. The long list of Bootstrap tools on the Resources page will help you create and modify the theme, pages, and components for your site.

Your websites are due on Tuesday, March 31, so next week we will work on fine tuning the content of your sites. Here’s how we’ll spend our time in class:

  • On Tuesday, we will focus on revising the text on your sites. You should have a complete, functional website before you come to class. In preparation for our discussion, please read Chapters 4–6 in Nicely Said and bring that book to class.
  • On Thursday, we will spend most of our time in a peer-critique workshop. A draft of your Unit #2 site should be finished and uploaded to your personal domain before you come to class. This workshop will help you iron out any final wrinkles in the design and functionality of your site. After our workshop, we will discuss our next big project and prepare for our first meeting with our clients.

Good luck building and refining your Unit #2 website this weekend! If you have any questions along the way, please let me know.

Week 8: Styling Bootstrap and Creating Effective Content

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

Next week is spring break, and I hope all of you enjoy some well-deserved rest. At the same time, I hope you won’t forget that you are only halfway through the Responsive Microsite project. At this point, you should be making steady progress on three interrelated tasks:

  • Experimenting with the Bootstrap framework until you feel confident creating pages using containers, rows, and columns.
  • Converting your wireframes into functional HTML pages using Bootstrap components.
  • Drafting and collecting the various content types for your website, including headings, images, profiles, social media posts, videos, etc…

When we return from spring break, you should have a rough draft of your site. It’s OK if it’s very rough, and it doesn’t need to have any style beyond the default Bootstrap theme, but you need some functional pages with real content. During Week 8, we’ll work on refining that content and making your site beautiful. Here’s how we’ll spend our time in class:

  • On Tuesday, please come to class ready to show me a working draft of your Unit #2 site. During class, we’ll experiment with some tools for styling Bootstrap sites and practice adding custom CSS to your site. If you’d like to get a jump start on our workshop, you should familiarize yourself with Bootswatch, Bootstrap Magic, and Start Bootstrap. You might also want to get some inspiration from the Bootstrap sites featured in these collections:
  • I will be at a professional conference Wednesday through Saturday, so we will not have a formal class session on Thursday. However, our computer lab will be available, and I hope you will take advantage of the opportunity to meet and help each other experiment with various Bootstrap tools and give each other some feedback on your Unit #2 sites.

Because I’m traveling during Week 8, I won’t be able to hold regular office hours, but I will be available by email. If you have any questions about your Unit #2 project while I’m gone (or during spring break!), do not hesitate to contact me.

Week 7: More Bootstrap, Wireframing, and a Taste of Tables

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

Today’s Bootstrap workshop was intentionally slow and methodical, so I hope the concepts of “container,” “row,” and “column” have sunk deep into your brains. This weekend, you should continue to experiment with the Bootstrap framework, assembling various components in several different ways to get a sense of how they work together. I know this stuff is complicated, but there are plenty of resources online to help you. I suggest reading (or re-reading) the “Getting started” and “CSS” sections on the Bootstrap site, then moving on to video tutorials if you’re feeling lost. I recommend watching a video series on YouTube called “Bootstrap 3.0 Grid System” and/or a Lynda.com series called “Up and Running with Bootstrap 3″ (search for it once you log in with your Virginia Tech ID). I cannot stress this enough: you need to keep working with Bootstrap until it feels intuitive.

Next week, you’ll start building your Unit #2 site from the ground up. Here’s how we’ll proceed in class:

  • On Tuesday, we will spend most of our time in a wireframing workshop. Before you come to class, please read “Sketching: the Visual Thinking Power Tool,” by Mike Rohde, and “Using Wireframes to Streamline Your Development Process,” by Eric Shafer. (See the “Wireframing” section of the Resources page for more links.) I also recommend reviewing Chapter 3 of Nicely Said, especially the section called “Sketch it out.”
  • On Thursday, we will hop in our time machine and visit web design’s former best friend: the table. Today, table-based layouts are widely considered verboten, but you shouldn’t leave this class without understanding why good designers don’t use them anymore and, more importantly, how to use them effectively for displaying tabular data. Please read Chapter 8 in Learning Web Design and “Bring on the Tables,” by Roger Johansson, before you come to class. [Update: When you get to class, download the files for our in-class workshop.]

Week 7 is our last week before Spring Break, so if you need help brainstorming ideas for your Unit #2 site or getting up to speed with Bootstrap, please take advantage of my office hours (T 2–5, W 9–12).

Week 6: Writing for the Web and Building Sites with Bootstrap

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

With our first project and our first exam behind us, we can give our full attention to Unit #2, the Responsive Microsite, which will keep us busy through the end of March. As we learn about responsive web design, our default tool will be Bootstrap, but you can apply the same underlying principles to any responsive framework or theme you might use in the future. As we develop our Unit #2 sites, we’ll also spend some time on “content development” (also known as writing) with the help of our new textbook, Nicely Said.

Here’s a brief overview of our schedule for next week:

  • On Tuesday, we will continue our conversation about effective responsive websites, then dig in to Nicely Said. Please read Chapters 1–3 before you come to class. In addition, please review the assignment guidelines for Unit #2 and select your “client” for this project. (If you have multiple ideas and would like my advice about which one to choose, just let me know.)
  • We will spend Thursday in workshop mode, getting comfortable with the Bootstrap framework. Before you come to class, please read through the entire Bootstrap website, especially the “Getting started” and “CSS” pages. (The “Grid System” section on the CSS page is incredibly important; resist the temptation to skim it.)

If you want to talk about your plans for Unit #2, or if you need help making sense of Bootstrap, please come see me during office hours (T 1–4, W 9–12). Otherwise, I’ll look forward to seeing you in class next week. Stay warm this weekend!

Week 5: Exam #1 and Introduction to Responsive Web Design

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

We have used Unit #1 as a platform for practicing the basic principles of HTML and CSS covered in our textbook. At this point, none of you knows everything there is to know about web design (spoiler alert: you probably never will), but you should feel confident in your ability to look at HTML, CSS, and image files and understand how they fit together. Next week, you’ll get to put that knowledge to the test — literally. Then we’ll move on to more advanced projects that extend the skills you’ve learned with new tools and templates designed to simplify the process of developing websites. Here’s a quick overview of each day:

  • On Tuesday, we will have the first exam of the semester. Please arrive ready to spend the entire class period on the exam, which will consist of three sections: multiple choice questions, short responses (definitions and mini-essays), and a markup exercise. Everything we have covered during the first four weeks of class is fair game for the exam, so you should review your personal notes and the shared document in our class’s Google Drive folder, reread textbook chapters, and form study groups with your classmates to ensure that you are prepared.
  • On Thursday, I will introduce Unit #2, the Responsive Microsite, and we will take our first steps into the world of responsive web design. Before you come to class, please read Chapter 18 in Learning Web Design, and “Responsive Web Design: What It Is and How To Use It,” by Kayla Knight.

If you have any questions about these plans, let me know. Otherwise, good luck studying this weekend!

Week 4: Advanced Typography and Finishing Unit #1

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

It was great to see how quickly some of you worked your way through the tasks in CSS workshops this week. If you’re feeling confident during our in-class exercises, that’s a good sign. At this point, we’ve covered the basics of HTML and CSS markup, and your Unit #1 projects should be going from good to great as you apply these concepts to your sites.

During Week 4, you will put the finishing touches on your Unit #1 site, then carefully review your markup. (The W3C Validator is a harsh master!) Here’s how we’ll spend our time in class:

  • By Tuesday, you should have a complete draft of your Unit #1 site. Please be ready to show it to your peers during class. This means it should be “live” and functioning properly on your Reclaim Hosting site. (If you haven’t been able to connect to your Reclaim Hosting site via FTP, please follow these instructions). In addition, we will experiment with a few advanced typographic strategies and apply those strategies to your Unit #1 sites. Before you come to class, please review Chapter 12 in Learning Web Design (you’ve read this before, but you should know it inside and out by Tuesday), then read and/or explore the following resources:
  • Your Unit #1 project is due before you come to class on Thursday. Please review the assignment details before you submit your project and don’t forget the final piece of the assignment: a one-page memo explaining and justifying the choices you made as worked on your site. During class we will hold a review session for our first exam, which will take place the following Tuesday, so be sure to bring your book to class.

I know we’ve been moving very quickly through a lot of material lately, but these first few weeks in class are designed to help you master the key concepts of HTML and CSS, then apply those concepts to your Unit #1 project. If you’re not sure where you should be focusing your energy between now and February 12 (when Unit #1 is due), here are a few tips:

  • Two of the most basic aspects of style sheets are color and typography, so I’ll be looking for evidence that you know how to go beyond the default colors and fonts imposed by your browser.
  • We haven’t spent much time on CSS positioning (and getting positioning right can be really tricky), so I don’t expect to see incredibly complex page layouts. Your résumé doesn’t need to be complicated to be effective.
  • Along the same lines, remember that you’re creating a professional résumé designed to be seen by potential employers. Yes, you should inject some of your personality into the design, but a résumé may not be the best place to take big risks with an outlandish design.
  • This first assignment is intended, in part, to see how well you’ve been paying attention to the readings in our textbook. Your markup should be clean and well organized, and your HTML and CSS should validate.
  • If you aren’t comfortable with moving files from your computer to your Reclaim Hosting account via FTP, practice this skill. (Reminder: the “public_html” directory is where your “live” files should go.) If you need help with this, make an appointment to see me outside of class.

If you have any questions about where we’re headed, or if you want to reserve a time to see me during office hours (T 2–5; W 9–12), just let me know.

Week 3: Working with Color, the Box Model, and CSS Positioning

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

I told you that things would get a little more complicated during Week 2, and today’s exercises in class demonstrated that some of you aren’t keeping up with the material in our textbook. I know, I know, some of this stuff is dry and complicated, but it is absolutely essential that you have a firm grasp on the fundamentals of HTML and CSS before we move on to more exciting things.

Whatever your situation, don’t panic — we still have two weeks of class sessions to help you apply the concepts in our textbook to your Online Business Card and Résumé projects. Next week, we will review several topics and add a few new ones to the mix. Here’s what we’ll cover each day in class and what you need to do to prepare:

  • On Tuesday, we will dig a little deeper into CSS, focusing on colors, backgrounds, and the box model. Before you come to class, please read Chapters 13 and 14 in Learning Web Design and incorporate some of the concepts in those chapters into your style sheet. When you come to class on Tuesday, you should have two completed HTML files (one that includes an image) and a single CSS file that controls the visual design of both HTML pages. In addition, please make sure you can log in to your Reclaim Hosting control panel and download FileZilla onto your personal computer before class. [Update: When you get to class, download our CSS workshop files.]
  • On Thursday, we will learn how CSS can be used not just to style elements, but also to position them on the page. Before you come to class, please read Chapters 15 and 16 in Learning Web Design and identify at least one part of your Unit #1 site that could be modified using the concepts in these chapters. We’ll practice applying these concepts to your projects during class, but you may want to get a jump start on this before we meet. [Update: When you get to class, download our positioning workshop files.]

Remember, as you work your way through the textbook, you should be practicing, not just reading, the material. If you have fallen behind, please take some time this weekend to catch up. If you’ve been diligent with your homework and you’re still feeling lost, please come see me during office hours (Tuesday 2–5 or Wednesday 9–12). Oh, and if you find resources online that help you understand new concepts or make progress on your Unit #1 project, don’t forget to share them with your classmates on Twitter by using the class hashtag: #engl4814.

Week 2: Adding Styles, Links, and Images to Your Site

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

Thanks for your participation and enthusiasm during our first two class sessions! I was impressed with your review of our first reading assignment, and I hope you’ll maintain that same level of attention as we make our way through the rest of the book.

Here’s a quick overview of how we’ll spend our time during Week 2 and what you need to do to prepare for each class session:

  • On Tuesday, we will learn how to alter the visual appearance of HTML files using cascading style sheets (CSS). Before you come to class, please read Chapters 11 and 12 in Learning Web Design and complete the exercises throughout these chapters. (A word of warning: this marks the point at which the textbook begins to get more complicated, so you’ll need to spend enough time with each chapter to really understand the new concepts before you come to class each day.) In addition, you should bring a copy of your current résumé to class, with HTML tags applied to every element of the document. (If you aren’t sure which elements to use, make an educated guess; we’ll review these rough drafts in class.) Finally, Tuesday is the deadline for creating a Twitter account (if you don’t have one already) and registering for an account with Reclaim Hosting (unless you already have web hosting). If you’re having trouble finding an available domain name, Domainr can help you explore your options.
  • On Thursday, we will focus on the “business card” for Unit #1, so please start thinking about what you want your website’s readers to see when they visit your site. Draft a “welcome” paragraph or two, and find an image (preferably of yourself) that you would like to use on your site. Your CSS file should be well on its way, too, with style declarations for typography and color. Finally, please read Chapters 6 and 7 in Learning Web Design before you come to class and complete the exercises in these chapters.

By the end of Week 2, you should have a fully “marked-up” résumé and the makings of a well-styled résumé. If you’re doing all the reading and paying attention in class but still feeling lost, I recommend watching the tutorial videos titled “HTML Essential Training” on Lynda.com. If you need additional help beyond that, please come see me during office hours (T 2–5, W 9–12). The material in this class will only get more complex as the semester progresses, so if things aren’t clicking for you, now is the time to address the problem.

If you have any questions about our plans for next week, please send me an email or contact me on Twitter. Otherwise, I’ll see you in class on Tuesday!

Welcome to Developing Online Content!

Quinn WarnickWeekly Updates

Welcome to ENGL 4814: Developing Online Content. This website will function as the online headquarters for our class this semester. Each week, I will post an update to the website with details about coming week, deadline reminders, links to helpful resources, etc… I will use Virginia Tech’s Scholar site to record your grades, but otherwise, everything related to this course will be posted here. You should bookmark this site on your laptop, your tablet, your phone, etc. — whatever you use to get online.

A bit about me: I’ve been at Virginia Tech almost three years, and I love it here. My research focuses on how people use rhetoric in online environments, and all of the classes I teach have something to do with technology. I have been building websites since 1999, and I do some web consulting for small businesses and nonprofit groups that need help getting (or getting up to date) online. When I’m not staring at a computer screen, I love to cook, read, and spend time with my wife, a brilliant freelance writer, and our two daughters.

Each week, I will add a post to this website that previews what we will be doing in class the following week and reminds you what you need to do to prepare for those class sessions. The Week 2 post will be up later this week, but for now, here are a few things you can do to get a jump start on the semester: