Certificate of Completion in Web Design at CSUDH - Learn web site design with beginning, intermediate and advanced HTML and CSS, Adobe, Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Flash - Los Angeles, CA - Anissa Barton-Thompson

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Frequently Asked Questions

The following are questions that I receive regarding the course. I hope these are helpful!

question? Have more questions? Still not quite sure? Please contact me and I'll be happy to answer your questions.


Who Should Attend

I'm not very technical. Can I still take this course?

This is a very practical class and emphasis is placed on page design as well as coding and using other technologies. Most students find that, much to their surprise, web design is just as creative as technical. The purpose of the certificate is to allow students to familiarize themselves with all practical aspects of web design, and get a little insider knowledge in the process. Don't worry: Mac or PC users, graphic designers, programmers, casual users... whatever your comfort level, you will end the certificate with a clear understanding and the ability to take your web skills above those of the average HTMLer.

I'm not very artistic. Will that be a problem for this course?

You aren't expected to create gorgeous pages in this class. You are practicing the concepts so that you can take that knowledge and begin to build your web design skills. While graphics do add visual appeal and I highly recommend them, you aren't required to even have graphics on your site, if your skill level isn't there yet. Once you join the classroom, I offer some possible resources that offer free graphics with no royalties, so it is possible to use images you find on the Internet to use for your pages.

Can I take this course if I don't know HTML very well or at all?

Yes! In fact, that is the purpose of the first course: for you to successfully complete this course with a good working knowledge of HTML without knowledge of using an HTML editor. You are required to hand code your pages, so you should know your way around a keyboard, but that will definitely make you more comfortable using an HTML editor.

I've been doing web sites for [x] years. Should I take these courses?

It depends on what kind of training you've already had in web design. Knowing how to PROPERLY code is the first thing; but knowing that and how to place the elements on a page to create a well designed page is what will set you apart from the rest of the world. Take a look at the course information; if you see a skillset or section listed that you are not familiar with, then chances are this course will add to your present knowledge and would be useful. If you're still not sure, feel free to e-mail me so we can talk about where you'll feel most comfortable.

I want to build the next [Facebook/iTunes/etc.]... Should I take these courses?

While you will get the foundation you need to understand how sites like Facebook and iTunes are created, this is by no means a Full-stack Web Development program, and does not cover business- or enterprise-level website operation (as in: content management, server-side development, security, and e-commerce). The courses in this certificate are considered introductory, and will give you the course Front-end Developer background you'll need: understanding HTML, CSS and Javascript integration, and using tools from Adobe and other application providers to successfully create and maintain websites.

What's the difference between a Certificate program and a Certification program?

This is a certificate, not a certification. A certificate affirms that you completed a course of study at a college or university. A certification comes from a professional organization, certifying that you passed a test for a certain body of knowledge. Upon completion of this certificate, you can qualify to take the Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) Exam; you can also find certification exams online or through other providers (usually at an additional cost; student and teacher discounts may apply).

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About Class Scheduling

Is it possible to get the Web Design Certificate during one term/trimester?
What happens if my schedule conflicts with the class schedule, or a class is full or gets cancelled?

We typically offer each of the courses every term (Spring, Summer and Fall), so you can earn the certificate in one term. If you are taking classes to earn the certificate and are unable to take a class due to:

Are the courses online lecture? Can I do this completely online?

Unfortunately, no, not at this time... While the majority of the course materials are actually available online, the certificate program itself currently requires physical classroom attendance. (Online courses may be coming soon... Stay tuned!)

When are the courses? What does the program cost?

Courses are scheduled for the benefit of working adults, and are held Friday evenings and Saturday days. Courses are offered 3 times a year. Fees for each course are contained in the schedule, which can be found on the class links above, and at http://www4.csudh.edu/ceie/Web-Design/schedule-costs.

Where are the classes held?

Classes are held on the campus at CSUDH, in the Extended Education building.
CSUDH Campus Map & Directions | Extended Education Classroom Building Map

I have a job - can I fit this course — and realistically, homework — into my schedule?

The classes are very flexible. For this certificate program, your assignments are your in-class projects.
* Just a note: The classes are pretty fast-paced, and it is best not to get too far behind, especially when we go over lessons and examples during our "marathon sessions".

What if I don't want to take all the courses?

If you're not really interested in earning the full certificate, don't feel pressured... You can pick and choose which classes you want (as long as you can meet the pre-requisite for starting each).

Do you offer financial aid?

Financial aid is not available for non-credit programs.  However, student loans are available through Sallie Mae at https://www.salliemae.com/student-loans/career-training-smart-option-student-loan. The courses also qualify under CalJobs and i-Train.org eligible vendors.

How long does it take to receive the certificate?

You will receive an Application for Certificate form during the final classes. Once you've completed the pre-requisite courses, the program office will verify and process your university transcript, after which certificates are printed, signed off, and mailed out directly to you (or you may request to pick it up from the program office). The process typically takes up to one month after completion of a term; you may contact the program office directly if you have more specific questions about your certificate.

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About the Coursework

How does this course work?

All class projects are actually examples of you putting your new-found skills to work! When you complete a skillset or assignment, we review each student's progress in a roundtable forum, with helpful feedback from both myself and your fellow students (your potential web audience) alike. I do not actually grade assignments, other than indicating whether they "pass" or are "incomplete".

How much time will it take to complete each assignment?

A lot depends on how comfortable the student is with coding (or using an editor) and typing speed, as well as how quickly they pick up the concepts. Many students need a little extra help, so some additional time should be added for making changes to their pages; other students pick up quickly and will work at a faster pace. I will take time to answer all questions, so bear with us!

Do students get to choose the site they want to work on?

Students decide first what type of site they want to create (or redesign, if they are currently working on a site or want to use one of several sample sites I provide you). The student sites are reviewed toward the end the certificate coursework; as you work through each assignment, you may be asked to practice on a particular assignment, and then you may work on a page or site of your own choice.

Will this course teach me how to upload my files to my web site? Or how to use FTP software?

Yes! If you already have a web hosting provider account setup, you will be able to access it to learn how to properly manage your web files through FTP.

What sort of feedback do you give in this course?
Will you give students advice on how a web page should be designed?
Can the program help people who have a site (and know what changes they want to make)?
Can you guide me through the process of updating my website?

The focus of the course is to teach web design concepts and better execution, and along the process, those who have a web site they want to improve, find that the information presented gives them what they need to create a better web site. I do help the students through the process, but it's based on how they apply the concepts. I don't tell students how to initially design their page(s), but once they post their assignment, then I help them by pointing out where they might improve it (by applying the concepts they've learned).

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What You Need for Class

Are we expected to have the Adobe Creative Cloud account/software by the start of the class?
Do you know where I can buy the software at a good price?

Nope, you do NOT have to have Adobe Creative Cloud (CC) subscription service at the start of the program; we'll be hand-coding all of our work in the classes prior to the Dreamweaver class, specifically with the intent of making sure everyone knows how to code HTML without any kind of editor... so no worries!
If you'd like to try out Adobe CC before you buy it, you can download a free, fully functional 7-day trial version of the Adobe Creative Cloud (Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Flash/Animate, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and Acrobat all included) to test out. If you do decide you that you intend to use the software extensively, while you're enrolled in the certificate program, your student status grants you access to student discounts through Adobe.com directly, and through education resellers (my favorites are JourneyEd.com, AcademicSuperStore.com, and Amazon.com) through which you can make your purchases; in addition to software, the resellers also provide books, resource materials, and electronics (like USB flash/thumb drives).

What is the minimum software that I need to have in order to complete this certificate?

If you are familiar with hand coding HTML, you don't need any software for creating the actual page, other than a plain text editor, such as WordPad (Windows). Otherwise, you are free to use any HTML editor you wish, but it's not required.
* You may download a trial version of Adobe Creative Cloud applications (Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Flash/Animate) by visiting their site at http://www.adobe.com/downloads/.
* You will also need either pre-existing images or a graphics editor, such as Adobe's Fireworks, Illustrator, or PhotoShop programs (see previous) or an online tool like SumoPaint or Google Draw.

I can't find the link information about any required textbooks for this course... can you
direct me to it?

Nope... because there aren't any required textbooks! However, I do provide recommended reading for each course (which may help considering there are a zillion books on web design out nowadays). If you are running out of time before the course starts, or if you don't want to spend a lot of money for books, you might check your local library for any resources you can borrow instead of or in addition to getting your own copy. Otherwise, check the Optional Recommended Reading List provided on each course page.

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