GD 150 Course Syllabus

Advanced Web Design

Instructor: Rusty Robison

California State University, Fresno

Catalog description: Advanced application and exploration of web standards-based web design. Emphasis on user experience design methods, and responsive design solutions. (6 lab hours). (Course fee, $30).

Prerequisites for the course: GD 50

Course Specifics

This course builds upon students knowledge of foundational skills in web design on both conceptual and technical levels. The skills component of the course covers more advanced coding practices, introductory behavioral scripting, current tools and development environments, as well as research into usability and accessibility issues. The concepts section includes an overview/review of the history of the Internet, current paradigm shifts therein and a discussion of the impact of computers and the Internet on a broad range of cultures.

Course goals

  1. Through regular practice, students will become as confident designing through code as through other graphics software.  
  2. Students will become familiar with current coding techniques and user experience design practices.
  3. As designers, students will come to understand the fluid nature of the web “canvas” and be able to produce creative design solutions for displaying content across multiple platforms, environments, and cultural contexts.
  4. Students will experience a complex, collaborative web design project, through all stages of development.

Student Learning Outcomes

GD 2.  To demonstrate the capacity and ability to be a critical, creative visual thinker and to synthesize and apply processes, skills in the evaluation and application of graphic design.

GDO 2.1  Identify, evaluate, and apply traditional and contemporary techniques and processes professionally in typography, illustration and interactive multimedia design, including printing processes.

GDO 2.2  Identify and demonstrate comprehension and application of the fundamental terminology, tools and materials of graphic design.

GDO 2.3  Identify, evaluate and apply creative processes for designing graphic design.

GD 4.  Demonstrate basic knowledge of technological developments and application in graphic design.

GDO 4.1  Identify, define and apply technological methods and processes in graphic design including typography, illustration and interactive multimedia design.

Course requirements

Coursework will include weekly assignments, quizzes based on readings and videos, an individual project, and a larger collaborative project. Submitting work requires careful attention to detailed instructions.

Attendance is mandatory. Success in this course relies on learning skills that build on each other over time.

Grading policy

The final grade will made up of 40% weekly assignments, 20% individual project, and 40% final project.

Required Course Materials

Students will need to have access to a computer with an internet connection. Graphics software applications, such as Adobe, will be needed occasionally, but are not a significant part of this course. Students are expected to keep up to date with current web design practices via RSS, podcasts, books, youtube, etc.

Course Policies & Safety Issues

Students who miss class must keep up with the material by consulting the class website and fellow classmates. If a student misses a technical lesson/tutorial, they are responsible for finding other tutorial resources in order to complete the assignment on time.

Technical difficulties (i.e. computer crashed, jump drive lost, etc.) will not be accepted as excuses for not finishing assignments. There are many resources available to you on campus, and numerous cloud storage services. My intention is to prepare you for the professional world where these situations are unacceptable. Always have a Plan B.

Adding and Dropping Classes

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about the adding/dropping of classes, academic renewals, etc. Students can find more information on adding and dropping at .

University Policies and Services

For information on the University's policy regarding cheating and plagiarism, refer to the Class Schedule (Legal Notices on Cheating and Plagiarism) or the University Catalog (Policies and Regulations)." You may also direct students to the online  required syllabus policy statement page ( )


At California State University, Fresno, computers and communications links to remote resources are recognized as being integral to the education and research experience. Every student is required to have his/her own computer or have other personal access to a workstation (including a modem and a printer) with all the recommended software. The minimum and recommended standards for the workstations and software, which may vary by academic major, are updated periodically and are available from Information Technology Services ( or the University Bookstore ( In the curriculum and class assignments, students are presumed to have 24-hour access to a computer workstation and the necessary communication links to the University's information resources.

Subject to Change Statement

This syllabus and schedule are subject to change. In real-world situations like this, there is no one-size-fits-all strategy towards the design process. The schedule defined below provides an umbrella framework under which student teams will articulate their own methodologies and timelines.

Student Handbook

Information on student rights, responsibilities, academic honesty, etc., can be found on the Fresno State Student Handbook web page. The web page is located at: .

Tentative Course Schedule

Week 1

Refresh Coding Skills

Stylesheets and File Structure

Week 2

Layouts: CSS Positioning

Week 3

Layouts: Responsive Techniques

Week 4

Navigation: Responsive Techniques

Week 5


Week 6

Week 7

Dynamic Websites

Intro to JavaScript, PHP and JQuery

Week 8

Week 9

Working with Libraries

Week 10

Final Project

Research and Analysis

Week 11

Week 12


Week 13

Week 14

Design and Development

Week 15

Week 16


Finals Week