Course Description:

Web/CIS 206: Introduction to Web Development

This course offers a practical hands-on approach to designing, creating and uploading sites for the Web. Using text editing applications such as brackets, sublime text or Atom along with image editing software such as photoshop, students in this course construct a multi-page Web site complete with links to other sites, photographs, and graphic and animations they have created. Students learn how images, audio and video are represented digitally and transmitted on the Web, and how to optimize information to provide visitors with quick response as well as an engaging experience. Offered in an interactive hands-on computer classroom. (3 credits) Fall, Spring.


None.  No previous computer experience required.

This course is a prerequisite for:

  • CIS 306: Creating Expresive Web Sites
  • CIS 299: Web Development Center

It can be used to fulfill a requirement of The eBusiness Minor, The Web Development Minor, The Web Development Major  and The Graphic Design Communication Major

Course Objectives:

This course covers Web Development with HTML and CSS. It deals primarily with the design principles and mechanics as opposed to the aesthetics of developing Web sites.

By the end of this course you should feel comfortable creating content and publishing it on the internet. You should understand how text, images and sound are stored, transmitted over the Internet, and displayed. You should also be able to apply that knowledge to optimize the performance of your Web site. You should be able to construct a multi-page CSS based Web site complete with links to other sites, photographs and graphics and animations you have created. You should be able to upload your site to a web server for the world to see.

A central theme of the course is that developing content for the Web is much different than developing content for print media. When you develop a brochure you have complete control over what the client sees. That’s not the case with the Web. In a Web environment the user’s environment (PC, Mac or Android; phone, tablet or desktop; what fonts are installed; is the page being viewed using Internet Explorer,  Firefox, Safari; which version of the browser is being used; what is the aspect ratio and resolution of the user’s screen; does the user download images; is JavaScript enabled; does the user have a high speed or low speed connection to the internet, etc.) all have an effect on the image you project. As we move from topic to topic we examine these issues and explore methods and techniques for handling them.


  • You are taking this class because you are interested in learning about CSS based Web Development.
  • You are motivated by a desire to gain knowledge, not simply by a desire to get an “A”
  • You would prefer to learn more rather than less.
  • You are not shy about asking questions when you don’t understand a concept.
  • You have allocated sufficient time (4-9 hours/week) to work on assignments.

Text (Optional):

by Zak Ruvalcaba and Anne Boehm
19 chapters, 682 pages, 289 figures
Published April 2015
ISBN 978-1-890774-83-7
Available from


Brackets ( recommended )


Sublime Text

Supplies (Required):

  1. You will need at least two USB Flash Drives or an external hard drive.
  2. You must either check your RWU email account on a regular basis or forward your email from that account to an account that you do check.


You are required to attend all classes. If you do miss a class you are still responsible for all material presented; you must get the assignment from the Web and arrange to get the class notes and an explanation of the material you missed from at least one other student. If you still have questions after you have obtained the assignment, notes, and an explanation I will, of course, be happy to help you.

Missing a class is NEVER an excuse for not having your homework!


Much of the material presented in class is not in the reading or video lessons so you will need to take careful notes. You must have a notebook for this class. You must bring your notebook along with a writing implement to every class.

Class Schedule:

Academic Calendar 2017 – 2018

Starting (approximately) Topics (partial list)
First Two Weeks
  • How images, sound, and text are transmitted over the internet:
    • Why Digital? What does it mean to be Digital?
    • What can you do with a Bit? Why should you care?
    • Digital terms and concepts.
  • The basis for Web site performance optimization.
  • What’s behind a web page – HTML, XHTML, CSS, Javascript
  • Using Expression Web’s Code editor to make writing HTML easier.
  • Creating a Web site and uploading pages to a Web server.
  • Using Expression Web’s Design mode to avoid writing (most of your) HTML.
  • Creating tables and lists.
  • Adding color, special symbols, graphics, links, etc.
October 20 Warning Grades
  • Formatting with CSS
  • Font selection in an uncontrolled (unknown OS) environment
  • Color schemes
  • Spring Break (March 11-19)
  • Layers, divs, and tables
  • Layout with CSS
  • Rollovers and Other Interactive Elements
  • Page layout in an uncontrolled (multiple screen resolution) environment
  • Graphics
    • Bitmaps
    • Vector graphics
    • Understanding and controlling antialiasing and interpolation
    • Graphics in an uncontrolled (multiple screen resolution) environment
    • Animation: why, when, and how.
    • Optimization
December Last Day for Final Project Help… except for help on new material.
December 12 Final Project Due; Final Presentations – see Final Exam Schedule


Note: Topics may be… and frequently are… added, deleted or reordered as the semester progresses.  If there’s a topic you’d like to learn about, let me know.


Final grades will be assigned according to the following criteria. Your final grade will reflect your overall semester performance (including improvement) and your contribution to the class.

 A To earn an A in this class you must consistently go beyond assigned work, exploring topics that expand on those covered in class (✓++) . The quality of your work must be consistently outstanding, indicative of special effort and good scholarship. You must consistently have outstanding class participation.
 B To earn a B in this class you must completely master all topics covered in this course. You must complete all assignments on time and with good effort(✓+). You must contribute to class discussions on a regular basis.
 C Assignments generally completed on time and with good effort (✓“). Your graded work may contain minor flaws.
 D Below average work. Assignments sometimes completed on time. Cerus flawrs in graded wurk (✓-).
 F Final project unsatisfactory/missing or too much cell phone use in class. .
Homework & Quizzes: 40%
Final Project: 60%
Poor Attendance/Participation: -35%

Final Project:

Over the course of the semester you will create, post, and enhance your own Web site. As we learn each new concept, skill or technique you should incorporate it into your Web site. In addition to illustrating that you have mastered the course material your site should be interesting, visually pleasing, and hold the visitors attention. You must credit the source of any material on your Web site that was not created by you.

Working Together:

Any work you hand in or get checked off should represent what you know how to do. If you copy or modify another person’s assignment or have someone else do part of your Web page you are not only being dishonest, you are not learning. However, if someone helps you with your assignment you will both learn. You are encouraged to help another student figure out why some aspect of his/her homework, web page or graphic does not work. You should feel free to ask another student to help you with an assignment. But… you should never let another student copy all or part of your assignment nor should you copy or modify all or part of another person’s assignment and then call it your own.

You must be able to demonstrate your understanding by explaining and reproducing any feature included on a homework assignment or your Web project.

If you don’t understand how it works, don’t claim it as your own.

How to succeed in this course:

  •  Keep up with the material. Do not get behind. Each topic presented in this course builds on previous topics. If you do not understand what is going on this week you will probably not be able to understand what is going on next week. This is not the type of course where you can “cram” for an exam.

  • Start your assignments early. Give your subconscious time to work on the problem. Give yourself time to get help from the Discussion Forum, from another student, or from me.
  • Use the Discussion Forum.
  • If you miss a class, arrange to get the assignment, class notes and an explanation of the material you missed from at least one other student.
  • When I am checking assignments never say “I wasn’t here last class.”
  • Spend time in the computer lab. This is a learn-by-doing course. You should plan on spending two or three hours in the lab two or three times each week (in addition to class time). Put it in your schedule.
  • Use your classmates as a resource. Learn from them. Don’t copy from them.
  • Never check your messages or look at your cell phone during class.
  • Review your notes before each class. Make a list of points you do not understand.
  • Ask Questions. You are responsible for letting me know if you do not understand any material presented in class. There is no such thing as a dumb question. Asking questions will never hurt your grade… asking questions can help your grade. Don’t be shy. Ask Questions.
  • If you have trouble with an assignment come to see me before you get (too) frustrated.

Policy on Academic Integrity:


Tutorial Services:

Tutorial Support Services (TSS), located on the second floor of the University Library within the Center for Academic Development, provides peer and faculty tutoring at no charge for all RWU students. The Math, Writing, and Science Centers offer assistance Monday – Thursday 9 am – 8 pm; Friday 9 am – 3 pm; Sunday 2 pm – 8 pm. For additional information about the Center, including tutor schedules, please see our website at

RWU Policy on Disability Accommodations:

Any student who feels s/he may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should first contact the Student Accessibility Services office to coordinate reasonable accommodations. The SAS office will provide documented/registered students with the specific information needed to begin the accommodation process. SAS is located on the second floor of the Main University Library in the Center for Academic Development and is open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday. The contact number is 401-254-3841. Please then see me directly during my office hours so that we can have a private conversation about your specific needs. Please note Student Accessibility Services was previously known as Disability Support Services. Website: