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  Weekly Feature: (December 31, 2003)


Effective Educational Web Design
(Part One: It's Your Content that Counts)
Brad's Weekly Feature


As both a teacher and a Webmaster, I have a unique perspective on Web design for education. For me, the PALC Web site is a means to an end: serving the needs of adult learners of K-12 curriculum in the community. I have come to hold a number of strong opinions about effective Web design for education, based on my experience and research over the last five years.

In this week’s feature, I will begin a series of comments on successful Web design, to be incorporated into my upcoming School District 40 Professional Development Day workshop, “If You Build it, Will They Come?: Building Effective School Websites.”

The site has been fortunate to have access to Webtrendslive statistics for the past two years. Knowing what your clientele does on a Web site is an essential element of successful Web design. What kinds of things do we find out, you might ask?

Content, Content, Content

Without question, visitors to the site prefer to view the content produced by our students and teachers.

Student writing is consistently popular. In the past quarter, for example, 9% of our page views were of students’ writing, a total of over 12 000 pages viewed.

Teacher writing accounts for 12% of our pages viewed, with over 17 000 visits, but is based on more pages available, so is still running second in popularity to the students!

What may surprise you is that linking to content outside of has never been all that popular. A case in point is our Featured Web Site page. Frequently updated, the page has a minuscule .15% of pages viewed (placing 133rd overall). In fact, I sometimes wonder if it is worth the effort!

Next: Building in Interactivity the Free and Easy Way!

Visit Last Week's Feature:
Family Literacy Day 


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