Production for [Digital] Design

Instructor Aaron Ganci
Office hours by appointment or via Skype
Course HER A341
Section 1st 8w: 24257
2nd 8w: 26305
Time TR 8:30-11:00am
Location HR 143


Production for [Digital] Design provides students with a basic understanding of business practices associated with planning and managing on-screen design projects from beginning to end.

The course is not intended to be an in-depth comprehensive guide to production but focuses on what designers need to know—to talk comfortably about their design projects in professional terms, to ask the necessary questions, to reason effectively through the process, produce production ready files, and to be a productive team member in the production process.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Explain the work-flow involved in completing professional jobs from beginning to end.
  • Describe the basics for designing on-screen:, resolution, color, deliverable, tools and the constraints and roles for designing on-screen solutions.
  • Effectively communicate with production or development collaborators.
  • Explain basic business practices associated with designing on-screen
  • Explain why a designer would use a specific type of prototype or deliverable for on-screen design.
  • Produce various types of deliverables and prototype at different levels of fidelity.

Structure and Format

Each class session will be broken into two primary sections: a lecture and an activity. At the beginning of each class session, I will lecture about various topics related to digital production and collaboration. In the second part of the session, we will practice coding and prototyping skills. Often, this second part of class will give you a time to work on the various HTML+CSS projects you will be assigned. There are some cases where we will deviate from this formula, but this will generally be way class will be run.

In the schedule below, you can see each day's lecture topic labeled Lecture and each day's coding activity labeled Code.

Any assignments that need to be turned in are also listed in the schedule with a Due label. When in doubt about where to hand in your assignments, always refer back to this schedule. Clicking on the button will take you directly to where I want you to turn in your work.


Schedule is subject to change at the instructor's discretion

Week Class Topic
1 25 Aug

Lecture Introductions, Syllabus overview, content overview

Code What is HTML?

27 Aug

No Class: Instructor at NordDesign 2014

2 1 Sep

No Class: Labor Day

3 Sep

Lecture Jobs: print vs. web; Pixels and color

Code Basics of HTML + CSS, set up IU server space; Overview of Glossary webpage

Due Turn it in Codecademy HTML & CSS

3 8 Sep

Lecture General Web/Digital Terms

Code Overview of programming languages, using IU server space, glossary assignment discussion

Due Glossary definitions

10 Sep

Lecture retina vs. non-retina; Designing alone: small sites, production options

Code Web typography, recipe assignment discussion, CSS

Due Turn it in Glossary webpage

4 15 Sep

Code Demos and work on recipe page

17 Sep

Lecture Designing with others: Define and Gather Phases

Code Intro to Bootstrap

Due Turn it in recipe webpage

5 22 Sep

Lecture Designing with others: Design: Visual/UI design phase; file formats, prototyping options, deliverables and Develop phases

Code Bootstrap site #1 discussion

24 Sep

Code Bootstrap site #1 discussion

Due Turn it in Wireframing assignment

6 29 Sep

Lecture Designing with others: Visual specs

Code Bootstrap site #2 discussion

Due Turn it in Bootstrap site #1

1 Oct

Lecture Future tech’s effect on design (wearables, NFC)

Code Work on Bootstrap site #2

7 6 Oct

Lecture Review for test

Code Work on Bootstrap site #2

Due Turn it in Visual specs assignment

8 Oct

Lecture Review for test

Code Work on Bootstrap site #2

8 13 Oct

Code Work on Bootstrap site #2

Due Test (in class)

15 Oct

Due Turn it in Bootstrap site #2


Your grade will be broken down into the categories below*. Participation includes: being present and on time, asking and answering questions, helping to improve understanding of course content for others. Your full attention is expected during class time.

Category % of total
Assignments 60%
Glossary Webpage 5%
Recipe Webpage 5%
Wireframing Assignment 5%
Visual Spec Assignment 10%
Bootstrap Site #1 10%
Bootstrap Site #2 20%
Test 30%
Participation 10%

*Categories and percentage breakdown subject to change.

How Attendance might impact your grade

It is important that you are present for class. Excused absences (course conflicts, illness, death in the family, etc.) will be allowed with documentation. You have two unexcused absences in this course. Every absence after two (starting with the third absence) will result in a 5% reduction in your overall grade. For example, if you miss 3 classes, you will receive a 5% reduction; if you miss 5 classes, you will receive a 15% reduction. I hope that this policy stresses the importance of being present and active in class.

Late work

Every assignment in this course will be due at the beginning of the class of its defined due date. Work that is not handed in via the method requested by the instructor (OnCourse, email, etc) by the predetermined time will be considered late. The consequences of late submission fall on sliding scale, increasing in severity over time. If late work is handed in within the following parameters, the grade will be reduced in the following ways:

Due date/time – same day, end of class -10%
Same day, end of class – same day, end of day (11:59pm) -15%
Next day (midnight – 11:59pm) -20%
Any subsequent day -50%
Grading scale
A+ 100-98
A 97-93
A- 92-90
B+ 89-87
B 86-83
B- 82-80
C+ 79-77
C 76-73
C- 72-70
D+ 69-67
D 66-63
D- 62-60
F 59-0


Most readings can be found on the course site.

If you want a book about HTML and CSS, I recommend HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites by Jon Duckett (Amazon, IUPUI WorldCat)


General Course Policies

All university approved course policies apply to this course. To reference the policies about course withdrawal, disabilities, academic integrity, and more, please see

Academic Integrity

Pay careful attention to the university policies on Academic misconduct. Cheating, fabrication, dishonesty, interference, and especially plagiarism will not be tolerated in this course. You can find more information about these topics in Indiana University's Code of Student Rights, Responsibilites, and Conduct.

Other important links

  • For students with documented disabilities, please visit Adaptive Educational Services.
  • The university has several policies and procedures when dealing with emergencies. You can find many of them, including Active Shooter situations, Bomb threats, Fire, and more at Protect IU. If you have not signed up for IU-Notify, you should now. This service keeps you informed of emergency or weather related events happening on campus. You can sign up here.
  • Here are links to the 2014 Academic Calendar and Finals schedule.