School of Webcraft: Frequently Asked Questions

What is it? How do classes work? How do I get involved? Here’s a draft F.A.Q. we’ve been working on for the School of Webcraft, a joint partnership between Mozilla Drumbeat and Peer 2 Peer University to teach and learn the open web. We welcome your help to make this draft better. Got a question not covered below? Please add it here.

What is the School of Webcraft?

The School of Webcraft is a joint partnership between Mozilla and Peer 2 Peer University dedicated to providing web developer training that’s free, open and globally accessible. Our peer-led courses are powered by learners, mentors and contributors like you. Our goal: make it easy for people around the world to gain skills and build careers using open web technology. (Learn more about the School of Webcraft’s vision and plan here.)

What is Peer 2 Peer University?

Peer 2 Peer University is an open education project dedicated to “learning for everyone, by everyone, about almost anything.” P2PU offers a platform for lifelong learning and accreditation through online courses and freely available open education materials. Check out the P2PU Frequently Asked Quesions page here.

Who is Mozilla?

Mozilla is a global community and non-profit organization dedicated to¬† promoting openness, innovation and opportunity online. As one of the world’s leading open source projects, Mozilla believes that teaching and learning open standards helps keep the web open and awesome.

How can I get involved in the School of Webcraft?

Propose a course, take a course, or contribute ideas by joining our community. The School of Webcraft’s weekly community calls are also open to all to attend. You can also make a donation to support the School of Webcraft’s work.

What do you mean by “webcraft?”

Webcraft is “a systematic approach to web development and design education.” We think of it as as the range of skills, knowledge and habits today’s web developers and designers need to be successful, creative and current.

How do School of Webcraft courses work? Where do they meet?

School of Webcraft classes are held entirely online, and run from six to ten weeks. Anyone, anywhere with access to the web is free to apply for a course. Some courses hold online meetings or presentations each week. Other courses run asynchronously, and rely entirely on email and forum communication instead of online meetings.

How much does it cost to take a course?

Nothing. School of Webcraft courses are 100% free.

I’d like to take a School of Webcraft course. How do I do that?

Visit our course registration page to apply for a class. Course registration typically opens two or three weeks before the start of classes. Please note that because demand for coures is high, we can’t guarantee that all applicants will be accepted into a course.

I’d like to teach a School of Webcraft course. How do I do that?

You can propose a School of Webcraft course through our course proposal form here. You can also have a look at P2PU’s “Course Design Handbook” for tips and guidlines on designing your course.

I’d like to suggest a course idea, but not necessarily teach it myself. Can I do that?

Sure! Suggest your course idea using P2PU’s UserVoice forum. You can also vote on other people’s course suggestions there.

Do I need to be an expert to lead a course?

You don’t need to be a world-leading expert on your topic. While it certainly helps to have some background knowledge about the course you organise, the most important thing is to be committed to sharing your learning experience with other passionate people.

How much of a time commitment is typically involved in running a course?

Leading a School of Webcraft course typically takes up to about three hours a week, over six to ten weeks. A lot of the day-to-day time commitment stems from answering emails from participants and moderating discussions. Course organisers should also plan on setting aside some time before the course starts to design their course, structure the schedule, gather resources and gather feedback from the community.

What kinds of courses is the School of Webcraft looking for? What’s in scope, and what isn’t?

The School of Webcraft is dedicated to teaching and promoting web development based on open standards. For example, courses on HTML5 are in scope; courses on Flash are not. Our courses are built around tools that are accessible to any learner free of cost, and that allow participants to openly share their work. Participants are expected to openly license their code so that they can review, revise and adapt each others work.

Right now we’re especially interested in running courses on Javascript, CSS, HTML5 and WordPress Templating.

What courses has the School of Webcraft taught so far?

Here’s the courses we offered in our September 2010 pilot round:

I’d like to teach or learn in a language other than English. How can I do that?

The School of Webcraft is dedicated to providing courses in as many languages as possible. Last semester we ran courses in Portuguese and are looking to expand to include Spanish and other languages from January 2011 on. Please propose your course through our course proposal form.

Do you offer accreditation for School of Webcraft courses? Like a diploma or certificate?

Not yet. But we are developing an accreditation system based on badges. These badges will help learners publicise their achievement and skills to outside stakeholders, like potential  employers.

I have a question that’s not covered here. How can I get in touch with someone about it?

The best way to get in touch with us is through the School of Webcraft mailing list. Please feel free to join and ask your question there.

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