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Hello people, I could do with some help/advice (mostly advice) regarding a Computeach course I'm thinking of doing. I don't work in IT at the moment, but I'm looking for ...
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  1. #1
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Computeach course


    Hello people,

    I could do with some help/advice (mostly advice) regarding a Computeach course I'm thinking of doing. I don't work in IT at the moment, but I'm looking for a way into the world of webmastering/html authoring and maybe some server admin. work. One way seems to be to take the Computeach route: they offer a distance learning course which leads to CIW certification.
    I have a couple of hang-ups about the course. The first one is cost (a few thousand) the second is that it seems to revolve around web-authoring using Dreamweaver/Flash Macromedia/Microsoft Frontpage. I feel that I'm moving away from using the Gates software suite, but on the other hand this would be a way into my prefered career. I don't like Frontpage and would prefer to hand code my <html>Like this! (Well...almost)</html>
    There is also an e-commerce section to the course, but it doesn't say if any of this is vendor specific.
    Two questions then: by doing this am I buying into the Microsoft business empire? Would I be better to just buy a pile of books and learn in my own way and then try to get into IT taking another (cheaper) route? For example by becoming a Lone Ranger type of hacker

    Any helpful comments would be most welcome. The course title is, 'Certified Internet Webmaster'.

    Computeach link: http://www.computeach.co.uk/corp/Home.html
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  2. #2
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    Learning HTML IMO is far more important than learning frontpage/dreamweaver. HTML is the skill (and is cross platform!), frontpage/dreamweaver are just tools.

    However, Knowledge of everything will go a long way.

    It also depends a lot on are you wanting to do more of the design/graphics side, or the programming side?

    I started out on front page when i was 14, but within a week ditched it in favour of notepad.exe, and i must say, im glad that i did.

    A lot of jobs openings are for experienced people, having a few cert's are nice, but having experience (&proof) that you can actually do what you say will go further.

    If you learn backend languages, eg, PHP, Coldfusion, ASP , as well as databases, the SQL Language, mysql, postgres, (+**Good DB Design**) etc you will be able to build ecommerce sites, there's nothing special to it.

    Graphic Design skill's (IMO) are something that cannot be learned on a course (but i may be very wrong), i hold the opinion that your either born artistic or your not.

    Of course i speek from more of a programmer perspective, so my opinion's are obviously biased.

    Which ever way you go, I would strongly recommend that you start a website yourself, if it is a personal site about you, or a site for a hobby of yours, or even a business venture, this will give you the experience you need.

    Jason

  3. #3
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Thanks for that Jag. It's very helpful. I'm still having problems deciding, but I have a reasonable idea now
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

  4. #4
    Linux Engineer Giro's Avatar
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    Normally you have designers and coders im supprised the course covers both. I agree with J learning to code html by hand is a must you only use dreamweaver etc.. to speed up the devlopment proccess with things like auto tag compleation etc. If you do some nice templates or code some projects then add them to your CV IMO it shows more then just a cert but the cert would be a bonus. So you need to think if you want to design and do templates for sites, maintaining them ect. or if you want to work on the backend and be a coder the two are very seperate things and some people do both or just one. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Thanks for that feedback! I've found that the Open University do a set of modules that would lead to a cert. as a web applications developer- Cert. WAD (Open). This seems to cover hand coding html a bit more, and looks like it covers almost as much ground as the Computeach cert. (apart from the fact that the OU certificate doesn't sound quite as grand).

    The OU course is about a quarter of the price of the other one, and covers some basic design. I reckon I could do back-end stuff and some design. It would be interesting to see which aspect I prefer. Another selling point for the OU course is that there is a module covering the open source movement.

    I do take the point about covering my own web project. I'll just need to think about what kind of site to put together. I'm not into 'home pages' as such - a bit boring. Who knows, I might end up with my own server!

    Thanks again... This next week is decision time :o
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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    learning and certificates

    O'Reilly endorses several certificate series offered through the University of Illinois and Useractive. You can find more information here:

    http://learninglab.oreilly.com

    Trent

  7. #7
    Linux Guru kkubasik's Avatar
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    Im only 15, so i could be very wrong, but personly, i have found that while i like dreamweaver, i learned all my html in notepad about a year ago, and use (as j said) the auto tag completion in dreamweaver to speed up bland deveopment. I guess im a little more a creative man, and am drawn to the graphical side of things web, so i know very little back end (php, mysql, coldserver) i only know php, but am expanding my knowlege in that. But as far as macromedia goes, they do know how to make a solid product, and flash is one of those, i personaly use fireworks too, while photoshop is better, it a) came bundled for the CHEAP student price 249.95 for studio MX b) has seamless integration w/ the rest of the developers suite. But back to flash simply flash can make the front end of any static site brilliant. While server sechnologies dont realluy work with it, and i dont know actionscript much beond stop() go() it is a very powerful graphical tool that i would recommend to anyone who is making a site that they want to be secure and plain wicked cool
    Avoid the Gates of Hell. Use Linux
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    career path and stuff

    Learn HTML then use Dreamweaver to build some pretty websites. experiment with graphic apps like Fireworks. then start adding javascript and learning CSS to move to DHTML.

    Once you've grasped the client side stuff then progress to PHP and MySQL. that should give you a firm grounding. I wouldn't bother with the courses. You will get more out of teaching yourself. It is harder - but you end up being better.

    just a quick point. Web design is a very full field with lots of very skilled people in it, so the pay isn't normally very good. in comparison DBAs can earn quite a bit esp in the contract market. also the lower level boring stuff like router programming can still command pretty good cash.

    Whatever you decide - try and keep it fun!

    If you decide to teach yourself or take the course, the people here will always help.

    I do a fair bit of web coding. if you have any specific questions: post, pm or email me (kriszani@iscavision.com)

    good luck
    No trees were harmed during the creation of this message. Its made from a blend of elephant tusk and dolphin meat.

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