Course Outline for JavaScript Fundamentals

Week 1

Lesson 1- What Is JavaScript?

In today's lesson, you'll get right into it and learn what JavaScript is, where it came from, who uses it, and why you want to learn it. Most important, you'll learn how and where to write JavaScript. And we're not talking about just history, theory, or concepts. You'll go hands-on, and by the time you finish this first lesson, you will have already created, tested, and edited some real JavaScript code.

Lesson 2- Executing Scripts

Successful JavaScript programming requires controlling not just what a bit of JavaScript does but also when it performs its task. Today's lesson will show you how that works and introduce you to the concept of event handling, which allows you to write code that responds to various events, such as clicking an item on the screen.

Week 2

Lesson 3- The Document Object Model

Today's lesson is all about the Document Object Model (DOM), a set of rules and words you use to access and manipulate the elements of a Web page. You'll also learn about variables in today's lesson, which are temporary placeholders for information that can vary. While such terms and concepts are often scary to the new developers, they actually turn out to be quite easy to understand once you remove the shroud of mystery.

Lesson 4- Dates, Numbers, and Decision-Making

Code that makes decisions is the hallmark of all modern interactive websites and applications. In today's lesson, you'll learn about JavaScript's ability to make if . . . else decisions (If this happens, do this, or else do this). You'll also learn about data types, strings, numbers, and dates, and how and why programming languages treat these types of information differently.

Week 3

Lesson 5- Search My Site Code

Today's lesson will give you some Search My Site code. This is particularly handy for larger multipage sites, where users may want to search for a particular word or phrase within your site without having to go through the site one page at a time. And unlike some services that charge you money for this sort of thing, the method you'll learn here is free of charge. And as an added bonus, you'll learn how to add drop-down list controls to your pages.

Lesson 6- Fun With Music

In today's lesson, you'll learn to use JavaScript to add sound effects, background music, and custom music player controls to your Web pages. You'll also learn how to set HTML attributes and CSS styles through JavaScript and even to test the user's browsers for compatibility with modern HTML5 features.

Week 4

Lesson 7- Building a Picture Carousel

In today's lesson, we'll start on a picture carousel that allows users to click or cycle through thumbnail images, seeing an enlargement of one at a time. These can be a fun and useful addition to any website. Along the way, you'll learn some tips and tricks for using JavaScript with pictures and some new programming concepts like global variables and string manipulation.

Lesson 8- Fun With Arrays and Loops

Today's lesson is all about arrays and loops. As alien, boring, or scary as those things might sound, they're not that difficult. And they're the main constructs around which some of the best interactive elements, like slideshows and carousels, are built. In today's lesson, you'll learn how to create your own JavaScript arrays and loops and start getting a handle on how you can apply them toward building more interactive Web pages.

Week 5

Lesson 9- Timers and Transition Effects

Bringing motion to Web pages requires controlling the speed at which things happen. Today's lesson is about the two main ways you can control speed: JavaScript timers and CSS transitions. You'll also see how you can use JavaScript to trigger and control CSS transitions, which allows you to get some cool effects with minimal coding.

Lesson 10- Introducing jQuery

JavaScript is such a popular language, people have written many libraries to extend and simplify its use. Perhaps the most widely used and well known is jQuery. In today's lesson, you'll learn what jQuery is, where to get it, and how to get started using it in your own websites.

Week 6

Lesson 11- Creating Collapsible Panels and Accordions

In today's lesson, you'll build on what you learned last time about jQuery to add some powerful new techniques to your arsenal. Specifically, you'll see how you can use jQuery to create collapsible panel and accordion controls. These are custom controls that allow you to create more modern-looking websites in which users can click to expand information, making your site more efficient, effective, and easier to use on touch screens.

Lesson 12- Using jQuery Plug-ins

jQuery is more than just a JavaScript library. It's a complete ecosystem that includes lots of prewritten code commonly referred to as jQuery plug-ins. There are thousands of free plug-ins available, and they provide for all kinds of slideshows, carousels, touchscreen interfaces, and countless other features that you can add to your own creations, for free, with minimal fuss. In today's lesson, you'll learn how to find jQuery plug-ins and incorporate them into your own site.

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