University of Technology Sydney

87539 VC Designing Interactions: Webmedia

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2022 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Design, Architecture and Building: Design
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:

Undergraduate

Result type: Grade and marks

Description

Today the web has a pervasive presence in our lives; through it we access information, communicate, connect, experience. There are many facets of design involved in generating content for the web: interface design; information design; information architecture; user experience design; interaction design, etc. Through this subject students extend their understanding of some of these facets of design and the production of content for websites. The design environment of the screen – the constraints and considerations – is explored.

This subject provides students with the opportunity to explore and develop their understanding of visual communication on the web to produce more complex and sophisticated outcomes that are responsive, data driven or interactive. Students are introduced to the fundamentals of responsive web design to create flexible design systems that adapt to the viewing environment in anticipation of the array of devices and screens through which their designs will be viewed.

HTML, CSS and the JavaScript programming language are covered to provide students with the skills to create dynamic or interactive projects – basic concepts of usability and theories of interaction are also surveyed. Much of the learning experience occurs through working on projects and students are encouraged to experiment, to undertake self-directed learning and to integrate research, theory and practice.

Traditionally, visual communicators collaborate with a range of professions when producing web media. For instance, when creating a website a designer might employ a programmer to transform their static design into a website. However, many designers now choose to engage with code and programming, expanding their creative practice and exploring new design possibilities that are made available. The aim of this subject is to provide a deeper understanding of the web as a medium and material through knowledge of its underlying technologies.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

1. Research and plan a project for the web and gain experience in the production, structuring and designation of content for web media
2. Have a developing critical awarness of the social, environmental and ethical considerations of working with webmedia
3. Understand and apply design principles and fundamentals within the design constraints and affordances of the screen-based web environment
4. Develop a capacity for basic problem solving skills relevant to the design and realisation of web media
5. Demonstrate an introductory understanding of the client-side web technologies of HTML, CSS and JavaScript
6. Demonstrate a basic understanding of the fundamentals and possibilities of web-based visual communication design
7. Engage with technical and conceptual development within the context of the studio group

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject also contributes to the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes:

  • Engage critically in urgent ecological issues in practice-led projects. (A.2)
  • Communicate an informed well-researched viewpoint. (C.2)
  • Create designs that respond to their context in formally or conceptually innovative ways. (I.1)
  • Advance ideas through an exploratory and iterative design process. (I.2)
  • An ability to critique your own work and the work of others with reference to standards drawn from contemporary design practice. (P.1)
  • Understanding of academic and professional ethics, copyright and appropriate acknowledgement of intellectual property. (P.3)
  • Source, evaluate and utilise appropriate academic and professional references. (R.1)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

The term CAPRI is used for the five Design, Architecture and Building faculty graduate attribute categories where:

C = communication and groupwork

A = attitudes and values

P = practical and professional

R = research and critique

I = innovation and creativity.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs) are linked to these categories using codes (e.g. C-1, A-3, P-4, etc.).

Teaching and learning strategies

Studio sessions will give you the opportunity to discuss questions about the weekly topic/content with your peers and with an expert studio leader, to collaborate on activities directly relevant to key ideas and to develop your skills as a design practitioner with assistance from your studio leader. Studio sessions will provide you with the opportunity to take ownership of the ideas encountered in preparatory reading, research and the lectures. Your studio leader will facilitate discussion and offer expert insight and direction where needed, but as students you are primarily responsible for the mood of the studio session.

Lecture material will be presented within the studio sessions a combination of theoretical and practical concepts that look at the web, design & design practice and web media technologies. All material is based on technologies and concepts that are part of contemporary web design and development practice.

It is essential you bring your projects and design materials each week. This includes drawing tools and a sketch/note book, an external hard drive or USB memory stick and all of your notes and research material from previous studio classes.

Outside class time students are expected to extend the enquiries made in the studio sessions with the independent development of their assessment projects.

Assessment feedback will be provided as verbal feedback during studio sessions, written general feedback, Review against task criteria and as written feedback in review.

Content (topics)

• Web design - design practice in the context of web media.
• Information architecture - How to structure content using sitemaps and wireframes.
• Usability - Basic usability and interaction design principles that apply to web media.
• Design Practice - Researching, planning and managing a basic project for the web.
• Web Development - Hand-coding basic web pages using client-side technologies of HTML and CSS & JavaScript
• Developing a critical awarness of the social, environmental and ethical considerations of working with webmedia

Assessment

Assessment task 1: Website Research, Planning & Proposal

Intent:

For this assignment you will research and begin developing a concept for an online feature article. This will be the groundwork for your final assignment where you will complete the design and build your proposed site. This task also includes a number of weekly activities that must be completed.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

1, 2, 3, 6 and 7

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

A.2, C.2, I.1, P.3 and R.1

Type: Project
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 40%
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Engagement with research and planning processes, including acknowledgement of sources 20 1 R.1
Ability to think conceptually and critically, as evidenced in the production of a creative and engaging concept 20 6 I.1
Visual communication design and design considerations in your proposal including hierarchy, typography, image quality and text and image relationships. 20 3 P.3
Completion of weekly activities and active participation in studio 20 7 C.2
Evidence of a developing a critical awarness of the social, environmental and ethical considerations of working with webmedia 20 2 A.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 2: Website Realisation

Intent:

From the groundwork developed in your proposal you will refine your proposed design and construct a working responsive and/or interactive online article using HTML, CSS and Javascript.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

3, 4, 5, 6 and 7

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

C.2, I.1, I.2 and P.1

Type: Project
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 60%
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Evidence of ongoing engagement with technical and conceptual development within the context of the studio group 20 7 C.2
Thoughtful consideration of what content is included and how it is arranged, which is clearly informed by research and planning processes 20 6 I.1
Quality of visual communication design in responsive and/or interactive web media forms, including hierarchy, typography, image quality, text and image relationships 20 3 I.1
Ability to work iteratively and undertake self-directed and reflective learning to expand knowledge & skills as required by a concept and how it is arranged 20 4 I.2
Technical understanding and proficiency as evidenced in the production of a semantic, well formed HTML, CSS and Javascript website 20 5 P.1
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Minimum requirements

The DAB attendance policy requires students to attend no less than 80% of formal teaching sessions (lectures and tutorials) for each class they are enrolled in to remain eligible for assessment.

Required texts

See UTSOnline (87539 VC Tech: Intro to Web Media > Resources).

Recommended texts

See UTSOnline (87539 VC Tech: Intro to Web Media > Resources).

References

See UTSOnline (87539 VC Tech: Intro to Web Media > Resources).

Other resources

See UTSOnline (87539 VC Tech: Intro to Web Media > Resources).