Developing an Instructional Website

There has been much debate as to the mechanics of building an instructional website. Many are choosing Blogger and other are choosing WordPress. And there will be some that will write the code using a text editor or perhaps Dreamweaver. It really doesn’t matter what format is chosen to build the site. It only matters that the content is good, your audience can navigate the site, and that it looks nice.

I do think the site needs to look nice. If not, I think some credibility is lost. How many times have you been to a site that looks like your cousin put it together? Do you trust that site? I don’t. I keep looking. Now it doesn’t need to be slick like a Fortune 500 company. But I do think it needs to be clean and professional. I should be able to navigate the site, be able to know the name of the site, and be able to read it five minutes without an advertisement popping up on the screen. If the developer used more than three colors, I’m out of there. Too much information. And I can tell they don’t know much about design. Sound snobbish? Maybe it is. Maybe it is my background in publishing. But I think that if we are going to teach 21st Century Skills, part of the skill is publishing digitally in a professional manner. And a black background with yellow type is not only hard to read, it is bad design, not to mention it has accessibility issues.

Let’s face it, the kids of today will be working, at least some of the time, virtually. They need to know how to present themselves. Design is showing up in front of a judge in a suit and tie, bad design is shorts and shower shoos. I think we need to show them how to dress.

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