Teaching coding to journalism students

Radu Meza (Researcher) , Andrei Costina (Researcher)

Topics: Coding , Multimedia , Web/Online , Project

Teaching coding, mark-up languages, styling and system design principles to students with a non-technical background: This tipsheet is a recommendation derived from point n°8 of the State Of The Art report (the ten tips guide, p. 17): "Teaching code should be generalized so students have more autonomy. Collaboration with IT students must be encouraged. Such wish was clearly expressed by many schools."

Short description:

The main focus of this tipsheet is on teaching web design and web content management to journalism students.

Web design skills are increasingly required on the job market, but due to the skill mix required to teach and learn web design, computer science/engineering study programs tend to focus on programming for the web and communication/arts study programs tend to focus on visual design.

A proper understanding of web design principles in the context of the widespread use of content management systems is key to allowing students to have the creative freedom needed to develop their ideas.

By using free open source web content management systems for the development of web projects, this approach encourages students to explore and understand contemporary web design by consolidating knowledge and analytical skills and complementing them with practical skills required on today’s job market.

Open Questions

- Teaching actual programming to students with a background in journalism or philology is not very likely to happen as long as these students lack the knowledge of basic mathematical concepts in Algebra, Geometry, Graph Theory, etc.

- How far can a web project go solely through functionality and template customisation done by editing HTML, CSS and combining plugins?

Download | Coding and functionality design.pdf (73kb)

Teaching coding and functionality