About this project and ENGL 490 Web Writing

The Instructor's Perspective
ENGL 490 is a senior-level digital writing course at The University of Findlay. Students from a variety of majors including English, Communication, Philosophy, Law, and Equestrian Studies write one co-authored, hypertext piece as a semester project, and this semester's project was a review of Lee Odell and Susan Katz's first-year writing text Writing in a Visual Age. Because all of the students in ENGL 490 have completed first-year composition courses, and many serve as tutors in the campus writing center for this population, they are familiar with what types of textbooks and assignments first-year composition students are most likely to succeed using. This project serves as an "ongoing thread" weaving in and out of other digital projects we complete during the semester including flash poetry/fiction projects, blogs, technology literacy autobiographies, and digital definitions. To read a transcript of a discussion about our progress, click here. To view other sample projects we have completed during this semester, and for a link to the ENGL 490 syllabus, please click here.

Dr. Christine Tulley

 

A Student Perspective
The process of creating a look and feel for this site began rather early in the assignment.  To generate ideas, we took a look at existing book critiques on CCOnline.  We engaged in an interactive brainstorming session through a Blackboard Discussion, which enabled us to have a resource of our general group preferences.  We then proceeded to design the site through majority vote.  From the beginning, it was decided that the look of the site should reflect that of the textbook.  We then worked to develop a color palate for the site, using Microsoft FrontPage to test several options.  After voting on which we preferred, we agreed on a maroon for the headlines and splash page, black for the text and a light cream for the background of the content pages.

After choosing the colors, we moved on to select the overall look of the images used on the site.  We created a series of four looks, each containing an element from the design of the textbook.  Through another Blackboard Discussion, the group decided on the Option Two, but with a few modifications.  After those modifications were made, we individually constructed our pages using FrontPage.  Once our pages were constructed, the site coordinator updated the links and assembled the site.

Throughout a two-week period, we spent class time developing the content for the site.  We discussed how we should divide the work, with Dr. Tulley ultimately writing custom assignment sheets for us.  Each student was assigned a writing role and a formatting role, which allowed the class to split the workload equally.  During the development of the site, we spent time analyzing various elements of the text and brainstorming.  Some situations called for a group consensus, as we each had a different perspective to bring to the table.

Overall, we worked efficiently and productively as a group, making all the decisions along the way.

Levi Perkins