The I.T. Minor – What I have learned

I started off with an interest in web design and computers, I had a modicum of skills that I had taught myself prior to starting this program.  However, I am grateful for the opportunity to learn even more about the W3C standards structuring of website administration as it relates to XHTML 1.0 Transitional and Adobe Dreamweaver.

In the Fall 2011 semester, ITEC 3610, we learned about the Meyers Briggs Personality Index and how it could be useful in determining where group dynamic strengths lay and the soft skills relevant to successful interviewing from Professor Catherine Lowry.  We also learned some advanced Microsoft Word 2007 formatting techniques with the ruler enabled.  We also learned how to use formulas in Microsoft Excel 2007 from Professor David Luneau.  We also learned how to use Fireworks, WordPress blogging and how to read and understand HTML and XHTML 1.0 Transitional coding tags from Professor Thomas Wallace.

In the second semester, ITEC 3650, we worked on the planning stages of the UALR Mobility Project with Professor Aaron Baker.  We learned how to use Microsoft Access 2007 including how to build the database, how to generate queries and reports and even how to set up a user friendly switchboard for novice end users.    We learned how to build our online web portfolio using Adobe Dreamweaver and how to validate our CSS and XHTML 1.0 Transitional code with W3C Standards from Professor Thomas Wallace.

In the third, capstone semester of ITEC 4610, we primarily were instructed by Aaron Baker and worked on two projects in addition to reworking our online portfolio this time in WordPress.com.   The first project we worked on in groups of three for me was the Academics Database Planning Project.  This is where Professor Aaron Baker showed us how PODS worked in WordPress.org which functions in MySQL and PHP as a database.  Our task was to design a database structure of the existing information found at http://ualr.edu/academics/index.php/home/programs/undergraduate-programs/ .       We were assigned to work with Dr. Kathy Oliveiro who works in the UALR Provost Office and is in charge of this section of the UALR Website information.  We were able to build the following proposal for her which she seemed to appreciate very much.  AcademicsProjectFinalRevision

In the second project we had a different group of three students in each group working on different Non-Profit Organizational Websites.  I was selected to work on the Arkansas Coalition of Women in Higher Education, ACWHE’s website.  Their original website can be found at http://acwhe.org/ while the temporary revision was held at http://acwhe.dreamhosters.com/ which is where we completely reworked the them and page structure of their website based on instructions from Dr. Vondra Armstrong who was the President Chairperson at the time of the project.

In conclusion, I am very grateful for the opportunity to learn so much regarding Microsoft Excel and Access from Professor David Luneau, the soft skills related to interviewing that Professor Catherine Lowry and web administration and design from Professor Thomas Wallace.  Professor Aaron Baker was just starting to work with the I.T. Minor Program when I took the minor, but he has been a longstanding colleague here on the UALR Campus as the Web Administrator for UALR.  He has proven many times how valuable his skills and abilities are regarding WordPress and the version that UALR utilizes.  I count myself very fortunate to have learned from such wonderful instructors.