Art 405
Web Design

Prerequisite: ART 301; Recommended Preparatory: ART 354. 
Advanced techniques in web design. This course covers advanced techniques in current computer web applications, interaction/motion web design and programming tools. 6 hours lab.

Interaction Design (IxD) is a growing field for communication designers to expand their knowledge and skillset towards. We have seen a shift within the industry to digital interactive products and media. Tech companies, non-profits, lifestyle brands, and other private and public sectors are seeking talent to help shape their customer and user experiences. The further advancement of connectivity with social media, artificial intelligence (AI), data visualization, and internet of things (IOT) has also led to the understanding of the value of an Interaction Designer.

An Interaction Designer should demonstrate engagement with theories and research of how data, words, imagery, motion, and sound work together to create interactive systems for more effective communication and experiences.

Art Department Mission

The CSUN Art Department is committed to teaching students to experience and value visual thinking and creative problem solving in art, as we as recognize the concurrent importance of perception, experimentation, innovation, and critical thinking. We encourage students to understand the history and traditions of art with their relevance to social and community concerns as well as the art of different cultures. Students are also encouraged to utilize and interact with the services, facilities and technologies offered throughout the University as well as those provided by the Art Department.

Program Outcomes:
Communication • Creativity • Critical Thought
Social Responsibility • Multidisciplinary • Ethical Practice

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Students will acquire competent knowledge and skills in various art media, concepts and methodologies.
  • Students will produce a competent body of individual and collaborative work suitable for a liberal arts degree, for the local, national and global marketplace.
  • Students will solve visual problems at a competent level, including understanding/application of the elements of art and principles of design.
  • Students will utilize and apply critical thinking skills to communicate ideas for their intended audience at a competent level in visual, oral, and written formats.
  • Students will acquire historical and contemporary knowledge of diverse cultural and aesthetic contexts, including political, visual and material culture.

Course Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate knowledge of advanced web design principles and the technology needed when developing a website.
  • Understand industry standards and processes when designing for human-computer interaction.
  • Demonstrate creativity in the ideation, design, and prototyping  of interactive systems that are useful, innovative, and engaging.
  • Apply and demonstrate advanced design execution to develop websites and interactions.

Course Materials and Software

You will need to purchase the following tools if you do not already own them. You will also be required to have the means necessary to produce your work. Communication Design courses rely on software and file management.

It is not required to carry all of the materials to class everyday, but when asked to have them, please be responsible and make sure you are always prepared to work. Factor in the cost of outputting your work this semester.

  • Adobe Creative Cloud – Photoshop, Illustrator, XD
  • Storage devices (USB Flash Drives, Portable Hard Drive)
  • Sketchbook
  • Tablet or smartphone access
  • other materials as needed per project

The Computer:
As you already may be aware, the Mac and its software are the main tools for the execution of graphic design. Students are recommended to use the computer lab outside of class or your own computer at home. Lab-time is not regulated, but it is up to you to get as much experience using the computer. The majority of the work in this class will be completed on the computer, but be aware that the computer is just a tool and that fundamentals and concepts are what we are emphasizing in this course. “There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept”. It is your responsibility to always keep your files backed up and organized.

Attendance and Final Exam

Studio/Lab courses, such as this, strongly take into consideration the entire learning and work habit process as well as required assignments. I do not accept late work.

You get 3 excused class absences for the semester.

Any absence beyond this and the instructor can reduce your overall grade by 1/3 grade unit. For example if you are absent 4 times an “A” will be come an “A-”.

Attendance is mandatory. Lectures, directions, demonstrations and critiques will not be repeated. Each student is expected to stay the full length of the class from beginning to the end. Do not miss class on days that projects/exercises are due because of unfinished projects. It is important you still receive information on those days. It is your responsibility to get missed information due to absences or tardiness.

I will take attendance during the first 5 minutes of class. If you arrive late, please notify the instructor. If you are late continually it will affect your overall final grade significantly. If you are late the day of a final critique, you will not be allowed to present your work and you will receive a zero points for presentation.

The University gives authorization to lower grades for poor attendance and tardiness at the instructor’s discretion.

An incomplete is only given if the student has completed the majority of the coursework and cannot complete the remainder of the course due to a reason beyond their control.

Final Exam
You are required to meet at the posted exam time for this class. Please make a note of it at this time.

Grading and Evaluation

Students will be evaluated on the basis of:

  • Projects – visual design and code
  • Class participation, interaction, and discussion
  • Evidence of initiative, creative and imaginative responses
  • Attendance
  • Quizzes and written assignments

Feel free to ask me about your grades and attendance totals at any time. There is a possibility of quizzes and writing assignments during the semester. Extra credit assignments and projects might be developed as well.

Project point breakdown:

  • Project 1: UI Visual System for Website: 75 Points
  • Project 2: Building a Website using a CMS: 100 Points
  • Project 3: Interaction Design Experimental Product: 150 Points
  • TOTAL: 325 Points


If you plan on being absent make sure to make arrangements to turn in the work earlier or on that day for partial credit. Project improvements can be made, but not to improve your grade. What you turn in the day it is due is what will be graded. This is an upper division class and there are no exceptions.

A few notes on this on project due dates:

  • Turning in something on the day it is due is almost always better than turning in nothing at all or turning it in late.
  • If something is due and you have nothing, show up anyway as participation with others IS PART OF YOUR GRADE.
  • If you come late the day a final project is due for presentation, you will NOT be able to present your work and you will receive 0 points in the presentation portion of your grade.

Academic Honesty and Miscellaneous

Definitions of Academic Honesty:
CHEATING is the act or attempted act of deception by which a student seeks to misrepresent that he/she has mastered information on an academic exercise that he/she has not mastered.

FABRICATION is the use of invented information or the falsification of research or other findings in an academic exercise.

FACILITATING ACADEMIC DISHONESTY is intentionally or knowingly helping or attempting to help another commit an act of academic dishonesty.

PLAGIARISM is the submission of another’s work as one’s own, without adequate attribution. When a student submits work for credit that includes the words, ideas or data of others, the source of the information must be acknowledged through complete, accurate, and specific references, and, if verbatim statements are included, through quotation marks or indentation as appropriate.

I. Don’t be shy about experimentation. I will be looking for ideas and projects that push the limits.

II. Always talk to me if there are any issues that deal with the projects. I will give you feedback, explanations, suggestions, etc. Do not be afraid to run any concept or idea by me. I want to encourage creativity and experimentation as long as you understand the fundamentals.

III. This class is intended to serve your needs. Learning requires active participation. If you have personal suggestions or requests, please do not hesitate to address them.

IV. Do not to use the computers, scanners, and printers for other class projects or work on any other projects during class time other than our own.

V. Food and drink are prohibited in computer labs.

VI. Show respect and be helpful to your fellow students. Have your work done and be present when we view the class work. Help each other in the lab. Remember, the person you help today might return the favor in the working world. Start creating your contacts now.

VII. Participate in SAGA (Student Advertising Graphics Association) here at CSUN and AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) Los Angeles Chapter events. Begin to immerse yourself in the industry. It will help you greatly.

Special Needs:
Students with disabilities must register with the Center on Disabilities and complete a services agreement each semester. Staff within the Center will verify the existence of a disability based on the documentation provided and approved accommodations. Students who are approved for test-taking accommodations must provide an Alternative Testing Form to their faculty member signed by a counselor in the Center on Disabilities prior to making testing arrangements. The Center on Disabilities is located in Bayramian Hall, room 110. Staff can be reached at 818.677.2684.


Conceive and design an expansive visual design system for a website.

  • Visual Systems/Atomic Design
  • UI Fundamentals 
  • Style Guides / Libraries
  • Responsive Design

4 Weeks


Design and develop a website using the WordPress CMS and a custom theme builder.

  • CSS
  • Templates/Themes
  • Customization
  • Plugins/Widgets
  • Branding

6 Weeks

Project 3: Interaction Design experimental product

Develop a product that explores human-digital interactions that are useful, innovative and engaging. 

  • Macro/Micro Interactions
  • Data Visualization
  • Prototyping/Mock-Ups
  • VR/AR/MR Concepts

5 Weeks