We're going to start slowly and introduce the two main tools that you need to build a basic web page:
We'll be learning the basics of these two tools through some fun, hands-on, practical activities.
To get an idea of what is possible with HTML and CSS, take a few minutes to browse some of the designs at the css Zen Garden.
Once you've glimpsed some of the power of great HTML and CSS design, let's get back to the basics and start learning! To get started straight away, jump right in to the first learning activity: What is HTML anyway? Or, if you want to know what's covered by the activities in Build a basic web page, checkout the following checklist.
After working through the activities in this section, you should be familiar with the following:
The following activities may help you apply the skills outlined above as you learn them in the context of a small project. To participate in collaborative "learn by doing" projects, get your account on the Wikiversity Sandbox Server. If you can think of new learning projects or ways to improve the existing ones, please !
The following resources may help you get started, but they are only suggestions. You may have other resources that you have found to be incredibly useful for learning the basics... and if so, why not update this page! Use these resources together with the suggested activities (or your own activities) to apply what you're learning as you go.
There are a lot of excellent tutorials out there for learning the basics of HTML and CSS, but many are out of date and obsolete. Here are a few tutorials that some of us have found useful: (please feel free to recommend others, but try to limit this list to 5).
Several other tutorials can be found online.
As you move through a tutorial, you may want to apply some of what you're learning to one of the suggested activities.
Like the tutorials, there's lots of great books and even more obsolete ones. One book that introduces the basic tools of the Web (HTML and CSS) using current standards but without overwhelming the reader with detail is Elizabeth Castro's Creating a Web Page with HTML. The book steps you through a small web project from beginning to end, including everything from creating the basic HTML, CSS and images, through to publishing your site on the web.
You might want to check out other Useful Books for learning the basics too!
To edit HTML you need a basic text editor. Although you can use something as simple as Notepad, a dedicated HTML editor can provide lots of useful features (such as colour syntax highlighting) and automatic error checking that will become more important as your HTML pages grow. At the other end of the spectrum, word processors (such as Microsoft Word) often provide "Save as HTML" functions but they add extra formatting that may make your HTML display unpredictably, and as a result are not recommended.
Ideally you'll find it easiest to use a text editor that provides a bit of extra functionality for editing HTML text. One excellent text editor that is designed for editing HTML and is completely free is PSPad. Another free high-end HTML/CSS editor is HTML-Kit for Windows systems. Notepad++ is also another option for Windows users. For other HTML editors, see Useful Applications.
You can find out how what you've learned in this module relates to qualifications in your country on the Learning Basic HTML and CSS:Quals page.
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