Web Site Creation as a Valuable Exercise: Seven Steps to Communicating Significance Online: Students Often Are Eager to Learn How to Make a Web Site, but Get Frustrated Easily by Details. (Web Site Creation as A Valuable Exercise)

By Bunz, Ulla | The Technology Teacher, February 2003 | Go to article overview

Web Site Creation as a Valuable Exercise: Seven Steps to Communicating Significance Online: Students Often Are Eager to Learn How to Make a Web Site, but Get Frustrated Easily by Details. (Web Site Creation as A Valuable Exercise)


Bunz, Ulla, The Technology Teacher


Technology classes in educational programs are abounding. Some are more theoretical, others more practical. Some take a technical perspective, others a rhetorical. Despite numerous differences in the make-up of these technology classes, many have one thing in common: the Web site assignment. Conveniently, this assignment can be sold as a "real world" application exercise with the goal of making it more attractive to the upper level students. Experience on the part of the author gained from teaching eleven communication technology classes in the past five semesters shows that most students are eager to learn how to make a Web site. However, unless the assignment is carefully crafted and directed by the instructor, the students gain little more than technical expertise at a very low level.

Good writing is more than putting words on paper, and a quality Web site requires more than colored text, a few graphics, and a few links. Quality education regarding Web site development calls for teaching students more than technical skills. Standards for Technological Literacy (ITEA, 2000) defines content of effective technology education that leads to technological literacy. This article explores the Web site assignment as a valuable exercise. By presenting a seven-step model, which forces students to think about their Web sites before actually creating them, the article directly addresses five of the twenty standards defined by the International Technology Education Association. Experience has proven that a combination of background information through lecture and the seven-step process leads to high quality Web sites that students are proud to show to potential employers. In the process, students develop an understanding of the characteristics, core concepts, and scope of Internet technology (Standards 1 and 2). Students also learn to draw connections between Internet technologies and other fields of interest (Standard 3). Finally, through the applied component of the exercise, students develop an understanding of attributes of Web design and are able to immediately apply this understanding (Standards 8 and 11).

The main problem with the Web site assignment is the time allowed for its completion. The Web site is usually not the only assignment in the class. However, in order to create even basic Web sites, a number of skills must be taught, such as a graphical interface Web site design program, or basic HTML code, navigation of the Web for information retrieval, and a file transfer protocol (FTP) program to upload the sites. If the instructor wants the sites to have more than a very basic level of sophistication, usually the fundamental techniques of scanning and a computer graphics software program application must be taught. Also, lectures of conceptual issues such as Web credibility, usability, audience targeted message design, visual rhetoric, and visual design need to be included in the instructional package. Finally, class time must be allocated for students to work on their Web sites. However, even this level of commitment does not always lead to "good" sites. Unfortunately, once uploaded, student sites are usually still identifiable as such.

The goal, then, is to turn the Web site assignment into a task that is enjoyable for the students and manageable for the instructor during the time allowed. As the end result of the assignment will be publicly available, students ought to be proud of their work rather than regarding it as "just another assignment completed." Ideally, students will learn not just how to create a Web site, but also understand how to direct the communicative power such a document can have.

The most successful strategy, according to personal experience, is adapted from van Hoosier-Carey's (1997) recommendations. Van Hoosier-Carey describes the Web site assignment as an exercise in the technical communication classroom. The key element to designing effective Web sites lies in good graphic design, which is often missing in Web sites that were created as class assignments. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Web Site Creation as a Valuable Exercise: Seven Steps to Communicating Significance Online: Students Often Are Eager to Learn How to Make a Web Site, but Get Frustrated Easily by Details. (Web Site Creation as A Valuable Exercise)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.