November 29, 2015

Back to School

As of last week, my first grad school course is completed, and let me tell you, it feels great to be back! Starting this past fall quarter, I have gone back to school for my master’s degree in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) from DePaul University in Chicago. I looked into many different universities for HCI, but the reason I ended up choosing DePaul was because I heard many great things about the program and they are one of the few that allow all courses to be taken completely online. Even though I am going to miss the in-person interaction with my fellow classmates, the online forum for each course mostly makes up for it. And being able to stay in Las Vegas and work full time while studying for my degree is a huge plus.

The first course I enrolled in was HCI 406: Website Design for HCI taught by Daniel Mittleman. The main objectives of this course were: “Web design introduced in a user-centered context. Application of visual design principles and common design patterns for web sites and mobile interfaces. Page markup using HTML and CSS addressing responsive web design, accessibility, and search engine optimization.”

I do have some basic background in HTML and CSS, but this course was able to take my knowledge in it much further than I thought it would. In addition to understanding more code syntax, also learning to read the Bootstrap documentation and how to effectively search for HTML and CSS code issues online, was very important and will help me while building websites in the future. I have become much more comfortable using the C Panel and file manager within the web hosting client and will no longer be as nervous when working with my personal web host interface. It has also been great knowing how to check my code and understanding why certain things are not working correctly. I feel between just 10 weeks ago and today, the knowledge I have acquired will be invaluable not only throughout my degree, but will have an immediate impact in my professional life also.

For the final project, we used HTML, CSS, and the Bootstrap framework to build a complete website focused on “weird articles” that we were given. There were many parameters to follow, such as embedding a video and creating an article index within the footer, but we were mostly able to customize the look and layout as much as we wanted to.

To view my final project for this course, please click below.

View the Website

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