Web technologies

The World Wide Web continues to provide a foundation for the development of a broad range of increasingly influential and strategic technologies, supporting a large variety of applications and services, both in the private and public sectors. There is a growing need for management and decision makers to gain a clearer understanding of the application development process, from planning through to deployment and maintenance. This module will give you an insight into architectures, protocols, standards, languages, tools and techniques; an understanding of approaches to more dynamic and mobile content; and demonstrate how you can analyse requirements, plan, design, implement and test a range of web applications.

Over the last few years the internet and the World Wide Web have provided the basis for the development of a range of strategic business solutions.

As web technologies have entered the mainstream of IT development a wide range of applications in sectors such as marketing, selling, purchasing, banking and publishing have been deployed, positioning the Web in the relationship between providers and users.

This module starts with a focus on the foundations of web applications, including protocols, standards and content handling. It builds on these by exploring application architectures, components and alternative application designs before considering how applications and content can be made more dynamic and mobile.

The module is made up of four blocks and a project.

Block 1 Foundations of web technology

The first block covers the basic technologies on which the Web is founded. Aspects covered include: historic development of the Web; ‘architecture’ and basic client server architecture; protocols such as HTTP; content markup (HTML, CSS, XML) and issues of accessibility and usability; standards and standardisation organisations (W3C, Internet working group); and security (firewalls, HTTPS, certificates).

This block of the module covers all of the basic foundations on which the remainder of the module builds.

Block 2 Web architectures

After examining the different approaches to web application architecture, Block 2 focuses on how the components of the client-server architecture can deliver dynamic content to web pages.

This block covers web application architectures, including cloud technology; server and client side components (web browsers, databases) and programming languages (JavaScript, PHP and SQL).

While this block considers a range of programming languages and their roles in developing applications, it does not teach programming and you are expected to have already acquired these skills.

This block includes both JavaScript and PHP programming activities. All the code required to produce a simple web application is provided and explained, but you should be prepared to utilise and adapt the examples in simple ways.

Block 3 Mobile content

Block 3 examines the trend toward more portable content and content customisation and also explores mobile content and applications. It considers aspects such as Web 2, content streaming (RSS), content manipulation (DOM, XSLT, etc.) and approaches to delivering content to mobile devices. You will also undertake the development of a mobile application using specialised mobile content and applications software.

Block 4 Developing applications

The final block explores how applications are planned, designed and developed by IT professionals, examining project planning, application design, development environments and tools as well as application deployment and maintenance.

Knowledge and Understanding

  • Describe how the development of the Web has enabled the creation of new forms of interaction and how these systems have impacted commerce and public services
  • Explain different architectural approaches to application design and contrast traditional approaches with the underlying client–server model of Web applications
  • Describe the roles of the range of protocols and standards associated with Web applications and their communications
  • Explain the operation and properties of ‘service’, ‘distributed’ and ‘mobile’ approaches to web architecture
  • Critically evaluate the role of standardisation bodies, and their published recommendations and standards, in terms of their impact on the development of web applications
  • Demonstrate knowledge of a range of different programming languages and explain their differing roles and properties for web applications
  • Discuss how accessibility, usability, localisation and globalisation impact on web design
  • Explain a range of security issues including secure protocols, use of certificates, authentication, authorisation, and firewalls
  • Discuss the nature of static and dynamic content and different approaches to providing content for a website.

Cognitive Skills

  • Analyse requirements to produce a design for a simple web application, applying an understanding of requirements for aspects such as usability and accessibility
  • Specify a suitable architecture, components and standards as the basis for the implementation of a web application
  • Construct, using appropriate code, a simple web application, selecting and reusing code where appropriate
  • Produce a mobile application which, as appropriate, transforms content and integrates services
  • Evaluate the suitability of a range of design tools and techniques for the development of an application.

Key Skills

  • Find, select and use information from a range of sources to support analysis, design and implementation tasks
  • Plan and produce a well-structured and researched report
  • Plan and manage your time and progress whilst undertaking a project.

Practical and/or Professional Skills

  • Outline the importance of standards and standardisation bodies
  • Maintain an up-to-date view of ongoing developments in web technology including standards and techniques
  • Produce design and development plans for a specific technical solution to a challenge in Web application development
  • Produce simple project plans for management of time and resources.
About this course:
UK Credits = 30 (15 ECTS)
Course code TT284
Credits 30
OU Level 2
SCQF level 8
FHEQ level 5
Course work includes:
Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
Final project is the examination
My Results
Final Grade Distinction

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