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MA Web Design & Content Planning

The core modules

course icon: Design for Web Content

Design for Web Content

The Design for Web Content module could be considered the ‘foundation’ module of the programme. It is the first taught module and covers all the basic building blocks of web design. The module examines two of the core themes of web design, aesthetics/graphics and client-side coding. Topics include the use of HTML and CSS, page design and layout, the use of colour, the use of images and image file formats, typography and general graphic design principles such as composition, visual hierarchy, alignment, the use of grids. The module also introduces core concepts such as web standards, semantic markup, content out, mobile first, and responsive design.

course icon: content management

Content Management

The Content Management module shifts the emphasis from content design principles to site design principles and the management of content. It introduces the Document Object Model (DOM) and explains how to manipulate it with JavaScript. In addition, concepts relevant to larger websites such as site structure and information architecture are introduced. This module covers the use of content management systems and introduces server-side technologies such as PHP and MySQL that enable the creation of dynamic websites that pull content from databases.

course icon: Social Media and SEO

Social Media and SEO

This module deals with the philosophy, business and organization of publishing content over the internet. This includes independent publishing and publishing across a range of sectors and at different scales. Topics covered include business aims, branding, social media, search engine optimisation (SEO), analytics and revenue generation.

course icon: User Experience Design

User Experience Design

This module deals with the principles of user-centred design and the importance of knowing your users so that design decisions can be made to control and improve the user experience (UX). The module includes components in both user experience research and user experience design.

course icon: applied art for the web

Applied Art for the Web

The aim of this module is to take student skills and understanding across a range of graphic and technical design topics to the next level. Topics covered include typography, bitmap images, vector images (SVG), graphic design principles, layout design, and icon design. Each topic is considered in respect of visual design and the underlying technical principles. The module also covers WordPress theme design.

course icon: major project

Major Project

The Major Project gives students the opportunity to research, develop and implement a live website as a practical illustration of the skills and ideas developed on the programme. The project begins with a project brief, developed by each student and then progresses through research, concept, cultural context, design development and planning before moving through to implementation. At each stage, the project will be reviewed by staff and students and additional guidance and criticism given where appropriate.