Developing Activities Overview
The Project Goals: Linking Pedagogy and Content
The Pedagogic Service project connects teaching materials to pedagogic methods in ways that ensure that faculty seeking teaching materials find pedagogic information and vice versa. Our goal is to create modules that address teaching methods of high interest to faculty and link them with examples illustrating the use of these methods in the classes they teach. More on Authoring Activities
Writing for the Web
AudienceAs an activity author, the primary audience for your activity webpage is other educators - those in your discipline and those in other fields of science, social science, engineering, mathematics and technology. Our users also include faculty in the humanities, K-12 teachers, and students at all levels.
Looking not ReadingThe most important distinction between writing for paper copy and for the web is that users read books while they look at websites. Studies show that users do not read through webpages linearly, rather they look first at the the things that catch their eye (titles, headers, pictures and links). Users need to be lured into reading by something interesting. To this end we encourage you to think about how a user will look at and move through the webpages to learn something. Nesting long descriptions behind pages that provide a quick overview is an important technique.
Bad SurprisesThe largest source of frustration to users are links that take them to things they are not expecting. They don't mind clicking nearly as much as being surprised or disappointed by where they land. Thus, it is critical to place links in contexts that help the user understand where they are going.
Using the SERC Content Management System
You will create your activity in the SERC Content Mangement System (CMS). This web-based interface will allow you to create and edit your activity webpage in such a way that it can be incorporated into this site. Your activity will also be shared with collaborators from other disciplines and it may be incorporated into other websites. The CMS uses a mark-up language similar to html or to old fashioned word processors. You can find full instructions in our documentation.
How Will You Know When You are Done?
We provide a checklist for authors as a guide for self-review. You can use the checklist to determine the readiness of your work for expert review.