On our Discussion Board for class, we have an introductory thread where we post about ourselves. So far, it appears that half the students in the class (at least) have no web design experience at all. They’ve said they’re rather intimidated by the assignments. I can understand that. The “suggested assignment times” have increased for this class. They were 3-4 hours usually per assignment and now they’re 6-8 hours. In Advanced Graphic Design, my assignment times were pretty close to the suggested times. But for Illustration…I’d spend sometimes 20 hours on one project. I’m not sure if that was because Illustrator was new to me or because I chose complicated pieces and tried to make them as good as possible. What I’m just trying to say is that the suggested assignment times aren’t always accurate.
Sometimes these classes seem really hard. Not to me, because I have a strong graphics program background, but for people with little experience in that. There are no prerequisites for this degree other than an Associates degree in any subject or equivalent credits. I’ve been lucky so far. I’ve had to learn three new programs for this. The first (and hardest) was Illustrator. For that class, Illustrator was the only thing I had to learn. My Photoshop background made this easier because I was familiar with the interface. For InDesign, that was also the only new program I had to learn and that was very simple to learn. But in that class, we also used Photoshop for the first time. So some students had to learn both Photoshop and InDesign that session. This time, I need to learn Dreamweaver. I’m already very familiar with Photoshop and the basic concepts of web design, so it’s basically just how to work Dreamweaver that I need to learn. For other students, they’re still just learning Photoshop, plus they’ll need to learn CSS.
On a side note, since I’ve learned Illustrator I often wish for some of the tools from that in Photoshop. Photoshop felt very foreign to me the first time I used it after using Illustrator several hours every day for 5 weeks.