|This lesson explains why you should have a CATE personal homepage and how to build it.|
- Read the material on this page
- Follow the links and read the relevant Help material
- Visit other personal homepages
- Take the practice quiz
- Observe the FTF demonstration
- Do the exercises
Read the Quick Guide for an overview of the subject.
Quick Guide for Personal Homepages
What is a CATE personal homepage?
It's a place on the Web where you can store and display information about yourself. In particular, it's for academic-related information. You probably have a great family and terrific pets, but your homepage is for information like where you went to school, your major, your teaching experience, and other data relevant to your teaching position at SRJC.
Why have a CATE personal homepage?
While it's not required, there are several reasons why you might want to have one. First, as noted above, it's the perfect place to display academic-related information about yourself. A personal homepage -- as we'll see -- is also the primary starting point for your students to find information about your classes. A suitable personal homepage can also serve as an effective tool for marketing your classes to prospective students.
What goes on a CATE personal homepage?
A place for everything, and everything in its place. Your CATE personal homepage should contain information about you. It will also contain links leading to pages for the classes you teach, but information about those classes should go on your section homepages, not on your personal homepage.
Some of the basic elements on a typical personal homepage will include your name, your email address, your campus phone number, your photograph, links to section homepages for classes you're teaching, and so on. The standard headings and options in the Personal Homepage module will help guide you through the suggested content for your page.
To get an idea of what goes on personal homepages, how they're organized, and how they look, you should take a few minutes to visit the homepages of some of your colleagues.
As you do that, you'll note that almost everyone displays the same basic kinds of content, although some instructors choose to go into considerably more detail than others. You'll also notice that you can apply a variety of layout options and color schemes to your pages.
Building Your Personal Homepage
In the CATE system you always have a personal homepage. To begin with it has the barest minimum of information and it's turned off so that no one can see it. It's your responsibility to add information as you see fit and activate the page -- open it so students, colleagues, and other visitors can see it -- whenever you're ready.
In order to do those things, you're going to use the buttons, controls, configurations, and options available in the Personal Homepage module.
When you log into your CATE account you'll arrive at the Main Menu. When you click on the "Personal Homepage" button you'll arrive at the Personal Homepage module.
There you'll see two columns of buttons.
In the lefthand column, the "Styles and Colors" button allows you to specify the layout and color scheme for your homepage. The "Basic Personal Data" button takes you to a page where you can edit exactly that kind of information. And the "Image" button will provide options for placing and configuring your photo on the page.
In the righthand column, each one of the buttons matches a potential heading on the homepage. The button labels should give you a pretty good idea about what kind of information goes with each of those buttons/headings. These should also help you decide what kind of information you want to put on your personal homepage.
Remember, this page is for information about you, not your classes.
You can approach construction of your homepage as you please, but there's definitely an optimal way to do the job. We strongly recommend you proceed in this manner.
- Enter/edit your basic personal data
- Enter/edit the data for any/all of the buttons/headings in the righthand column, as desired
- Use the "Links" button to create suitable links, if desired
- If you already understand images, go ahead and use the "Image" button to put your photo on the page; otherwise, you can come back and deal with this after you know more about using images on the Web
- Afterward doing those tasks, use the "Styles and Colors" button to choose layout and color scheme
- Finally, activate the page so it can be accessed by students, colleagues, and other visitors
Note that we suggest doing "Styles and Colors" last, because different layout templates will look better than others depending on how much text -- if any -- you decide to put into the various headings.
In any event, you can always go back and edit and/or delete anything at any time.
Basic personal data
The first item here is the checkbox for making your personal homepage active. Whenever you're ready, go ahead and select that checkbox.
Adjust your title, first name, last name, and degree(s) as you like.
Enter your position, such as faculty, chair, etc.
The name of your department was already set based on the information you submitted when you requested your CATE account, but you can change it here if you like.
Enter or edit your office number, name of the building, and name of the campus where your office is located.
You can list up to three phone numbers. For each one, you can set the description by using the pop-up menu, then enter the numbers into the fields for area code (always a good idea), prefix, four-digit number, and optional extension.
If you want to provide a fax number, you can do that.
Your email address is already filled in based on the information you submitted when you requested your CATE account, but you can change it as needed. Note that whatever email address you enter here will automatically flow into multiple other places -- such as section homepages -- unless you choose to override it in those places. In general you will NOT want to override it anywhere. That way, if you ever need to change your email address, you can edit it in this one field and it will automatically flow into all the other iterations.
If you already have your own alternative personal homepage somewhere else, you can enter that URL. Otherwise, just leave it blank.
After entering or editing data as needed, click the "Save Data" button at the top or bottom of the page to save your changes.
Buttons for headings
In the righthand column, the buttons are arranged in the same sequence from top to bottom as the (potential) headings on your personal homepage. You can use whatever button(s) you want, and ignore the others. For each button you choose to enter text, the corresponding heading will appear on the page immediately above that text. If there is no text, the heading won't appear.
Click on any button to enter or edit text for the corresponding heading. You can type in the text or you can paste it in from elsewhere (such as a MS Word document).
After entering/editing the text to your satisfaction, click the "Save Text" button.
Two of the buttons -- "Daily Schedule" and "Links" -- have additional options.
The "Daily Schedule" button allows you to create your schedule in as much or as little detail as you like. (Of course, you don't need to use it at all, in which case the heading won't appear on your homepage.)
Use the "Add to Schedule" button to create another element in your schedule. For each element, you can control the day of the week, the sequence within that day, the start time, the end time, the name of the activity, and the location of the activity.
You can always edit, delete, or clone any activity. The "Clone" feature makes it easy to use the same activity on multiple days.
If you choose to layout your daily schedule here, remember that you will need to come back and edit it whenever your daily routine changes.
If you want to add links to your personal homepage, click the "Links" button. For each link you want to add, click the "Add Link" button.
For each link, you control the URL (the Web address), the clickable name of the link, an optional description of the link, and the sequence in which the link appears under the "Links" heading.
You can always edit or delete any link any time you want.
Remember, your personal homepage is for information about you, so these links will lead to sites such as your alma mater, professional associations, and other academic-related websites of interest to your students. Links to actual teaching materials should normally be handled within your class website(s) -- where you'll find many more robust options -- not on your personal homepage.
The default value is "No image on homepage."
If you understand how to use images on the Web, this simple routine will allow you to place your photo on your personal homepage. If you don't know how to acquire a digitized image and/or how to put it in a suitable location on a server, then you should wait until you're comfortable with those tasks.
When your digitized images has been uploaded to a suitable location, you can use this routine to place that image on your homepage, resize it if desired, and specify an ALT tag for accessibility compliance.
Styles and Colors
As mentioned above, it's always best to save this part of the process for last, because some layouts might look unbalanced and unattractive depending on which headings you've used and how much text you've entered for them.
In any event, you'll find several layouts, each illustrated with a thumbnail image to give you an idea of what the template looks like. For each template, you'll have the choice of about nine different colors schemes.
Click any radio button to select that color scheme and the corresponding layout template, then click the "Save Style and Color" button at the top or bottom of the page to save your changes.
You can always edit your color scheme and layout any time you like.
Note that in this module you have relatively little control over the exact presentation of your page. That's because (1) we want to keep the process extremely simple, and (2) we want all SRJC faculty homepages to maintain a family resemblance. More advanced modules will offer vastly more control over layout, colors, fonts, etc.
Checking your work
Any time you make changes, you can see how they affect your page by clicking the "View Your Personal Homepage" button. Note that you can always use that button to see your personal homepage, even if it's not yet activated (which means no one else can see it). Also, note that your personal homepage does NOT contain the red message "DO NOT USE BROWSER'S "BACK" OR "FORWARD" BUTTON WHILE ON THIS PAGE," which means it's okay to use the browser's "Back" button to return to the editing page.
Activating your page
Whenever you're ready, click the "Basic Personal Data" button, then check the box labeled "Make this homepage accessible to visitors" and save your data. This opens the page so everyone can see it.
In addition, activating your personal homepage means the system will automatically create a link to it from the CATE directory page, and there will be a link to your homepage from listings on the SRJC schedule of classes for classes you teach. Of course, those links won't be available until you activate your page.
How do I get links to my classes on my personal homepage?
Rather than doing that work in the Personal Homepage module, you simply need to create and activate your section homepage(s) using the CATE Section Homepage module. As you create and activate each section homepage, the appropriate link will automatically appear on your CATE personal homepage. As those section homepages are closed (or the relevant semester fades into history), the links to them will automatically disappear.
Study the Help module for this topic. Think of this as a chapter in your textbook.
Help for Personal Home Pages
How to...Activate a Page: http://online.santarosa.edu/catedocs/howto_activate_page.html
How to...Use Automated Links: http://online.santarosa.edu/catedocs/howto_use_links.html
Visit CATE personal homepages built by your colleagues.
SRJC Faculty and Staff Homepages: http://online.santarosa.edu/homepage
After studying all the material for this lesson, take the self-assessment quiz.
CATE Online Training Quiz 01: Personal homepages
Demonstration (For face-to-face sessions)
We'll demonstrate how to go through the step-by-step process of creating a personal homepage from beginning to end.
|To help you better understand the material, to integrate the different modules, and to demonstrate how an entire class can be constructed from various components, in each lesson you'll be creating a portion of a class website, so at the end of the process you'll have a complete model of an entire class. |
To begin with, you should always use a practice course (such as CATE 101, ROCK 101, or BASE 101) for your exercises. After you've mastered the process and created material that's ready for your students, then you can convert your practice class into a real class that you're actually teaching and make it accessible.
Edit your personal homepage.
Take care of all the personal data.
Enter (or copy and paste) text for all the headings you want to use.
Optionally set up your daily schedule and/or create links.
If you have a suitable image on the Web and you know what to do, go ahead and put your photo on your homepage.
Choose a layout and color scheme.
Activate your page so everyone can see it.
Lab (For face-to-face sessions)
We'll walk around the room and assist individually as you undertake the exercises for this material.
WWII 101 A plain-vanilla sample class website
Rock 101 A fancier sample class website
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