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Intro to the Design of Everyday Things
Everyone designs. Design occurs anytime you deliberately change an environment to make things better. When you decide what seat to take in an auditorium you’re designing your experience. When you rearrange the furniture in a room or draft an email, you’re designing. This course provides a summary of key concepts from the first two chapters of The Design of Everyday Things (Revised and Expanded Edition, November 2013) by Don Norman. It’s intended to be enjoyable and informative for anyone curious about design: everyday people, technical people, designers, and non-designers alike. Why Take This Course? This course will provide you with the knowledge needed to start recognizing the role of design in today’s world, and to start making better design decisions in your own life. In addition to learning basic design concepts such as affordances and signifiers, you will also gain practice in observing and applying design principles. Prerequisites and Requirements There are no prerequisites for the course; it’s for anyone curious about basic design principles. Syllabus Lesson 1: Affordances and Signifiers (4 hours) Lesson 2: Conceptual Models and the System Image (4 hours) Lesson 3: Gulfs of Evaluation and Execution (1 hour) Final Project: Design the User Interface (UI) for a Timebank (7 hours) *The times include watching instructional videos, completing the course exercises, and finishing projects. In total, this course should take an average of 16 hours.
Web Accessibility
In this course you’ll get hands-on experience making web applications accessible. You’ll understand when and why users need accessibility. Then you’ll dive into the “how”: making a page work properly with screen readers, and managing input focus (e.g. the highlight you see when tabbing through a form.) You’ll understand what “semantics” and “semantic markup” mean for web pages and add ARIA markup to enable navigating the interface with a range of assistive devices. Finally, you’ll learn styling techniques that help users with partial vision navigate your pages easily and reliably. This course is also featured in our Senior Web Developer Nanodegree program. Why Take This Course? Not every user approaches their applications with the same abilities. Whether it’s age, vision concerns, limited hearing, a broken arm, or other limitations, everybody deserves access to their apps. This course dives into the why and how of making web applications accessible. As a bonus, accessible sites also tend to be more usable for everybody! Prerequisites and Requirements Students should know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. What Will I Learn? Project 3: Restaurant Reviewer You will develop a restaurant review application with a focus on accessibility. You will remotely access JSON files containing restaurant information (including name, a photograph, address, cuisine type and operating hours) as well as JSON files containing review information for each restaurant (name of reviewer, date of review, 5-star rating and comments). The reviews application must include an application header, and a menu providing multiple ways to filter the restaurants (by cuisine, by location, etc). When viewing a specific restaurant, current reviews must be displayed along with a form for the user to submit their own review. Syllabus Lesson 1: Overview In this lesson you’ll learn why accessibility matters, and who it affects. You’ll also get a first look at the web accessibility guidelines (WAI – Web Accessibility Initiative), understand what “POUR” means for accessibility, and locate checklists to help make your own sites accessible. Lesson 2: Focus In this lesson you’ll learn how to make a page usable for anyone navigating with the keyboard. This starts with an introduction to the concept of focus (the element on the page to which keyboard events will be targeted), how to make elements focusable and when, and the order in which focusable elements will be traversed when exploring the page with the keyboard. You’ll also learn how to manage focus in forms, in custom components, pop-ups, and off-screen content. Lesson 3: Semantics Basics In this lesson you’ll build on keyboard navigation to make a page work for people who are unable to use a standard user interface, including users who can't see the screen. This requires ensuring assistive technology (such as screen readers) has sufficient information to present an alternative UI. You’ll use a screen reader to try out ordinary form elements and add markup to make them work even better. You’ll understand the accessibility tree the browser constructs from the DOM. Finally, you’ll learn how to built-in HTML features to ensure the accessibility tree accurately reflects the visual UI. Lesson 4: Semantics Extras In this lesson, you’ll dive deeper into the screen-reader experience to add hyper-fast navigation. You’ll learn how to arrange headings and label links so screen reader users can fly through your pages! You’ll also learn how to call out “landmarks” into your page to speed up navigation even more. (As a bonus, this “semantic markup” also makes your markup more readable!) Lesson 5: Semantics - ARIA In this lesson, you’ll move beyond the native elements of HTML into building custom controls and interactions. Of course you want these to be accessible, and that’s where ARIA comes in – Accessible Rich Internet Applications. You’ll learn how to add attributes to your custom interactions to make them as accessible as native elements. You’ll also learn how to manage these attributes from Javascript as the user interacts with your page. Lesson 6: Style In this lesson, you’ll learn the third pillar of Accessibility (after Focus and Semantics): Styling. Your page’s styles need to support highlighting the focus, indicating ARIA states, being zoomed in or out, and viewed by people with limited color or contrast vision. You’ll learn how to audit your page with the Chrome Accessibility Tools and correct any styling issues that pop up, as well as designing with accessibility in mind.
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Academic Information Seeking
This course will introduce you to the basic elements of academic information seeking - we will explore the search process from defining a strategy to evaluating and documenting your search results. Attending the course will make you a proficient information seeker. You will learn how to carry out comprehensive literature searches based on your own research assignment. You will be guided through the various information seeking steps from selecting relevant search strategies and techniques to evaluating your search results, documenting your search process and citing your sources. Attending the course will enable you to: • Identify your information need • Evaluate databases and other information resources • Set up search strategies and use various search techniques • Formulate search strings based on your own research assignment • Identify relevant material types • Undertake critical evaluation of your sources • Search more efficiently on the internet • Avoid plagiarism • Cite correctly • Work with reference management • Document your search process The course is intended for undergraduate students but the lessons will be useful to anyone who is interested in becoming better at finding scientific information. There are no formal requirements for the course. The series consists of 21 lectures that are organized into three modules. The lectures include small assignments and quizzes (to check comprehension). The lectures will each touch upon a topic that is essential to the information seeking process. To get the most out of the lecture series, we recommend that you access the lectures while you are working on an academic paper. We also recommend that you watch the lectures in the order in which we have structured them. We recommend that you create and fill out a log book while attending the lectures. We have created a log book template that you can use during the course. The lecture series has been developed in collaboration between information specialists at University of Copenhagen and Technical University of DenmarkCommitment:
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