The thing about computer languages is that there is some weird heaviness on the actual work involved. People are scared of by codes and although they see the power, they just can’t seem to get going because they have no idea where to start.
That is where training comes in. And of course, fun training. You need to be taken by hand and shown exactly what you need to do, where you need to do it, and when you need to take the right action.
The funny thing about CSS is that it allows you to create your website in the fraction of the time when you would do it using tables. It’s hard to believe, but still after all these years of promotion for CSS people (and companies!) still heavily rely on tables for layout. They have no idea that they are simply wasting time on old techniques that will be useless in a matter of time.
So where do you need to pay attention on when you are looking for a CSS Guide?
1. The Teacher
The number one thing you need to be sure of is that your teacher knows where he or she is talking about. Why is he or she teaching about Cascading Stylesheet, because they need to from their boss? Because they think they can teach, no matter the subject?
Think of that, how many teachers are only “teaching” stuff, and never practice it their own? Ask yourself “why” are you teaching you me this. Are you the best in the field? Where did you get your knowledge from?
2. Teaching Style
So the teacher may be a great person, has all the required skills, has a passion for the subject and knows about everything of it. But can your teacher deliver? Does he or she KNOW how to explain things? How to take you by hand and show you step-by-step how things work?
Is it fun to follow along with the teacher? CSS is one of those topics that can become boring easily when it’s only discussed in a technical way. Make sure you know what you can expect!
An even more important thing is cutting right to the case. You don’t want to end up with all kind of knowledge that you will never use in practice. It simply isn’t useful to learn every possible css style there is when you just get started. And this brings us to the third point you need to pay attention on when you are looking for a css guide.
3. Teaching / learning speed
Can you keep up with the course? Does your teacher decide the speed, or do you? Of course a great way to follow a course is one that allows you to define your own speed. Home study courses and guides are wonderful for that.
How is your guide delivered? Are you somebody that likes to read, follow along with a training video or both? Decide what you like, training videos are great, because they allow you to follow along in a real life situation. This means hands on practice, which is exactly what you need if you want to become good in CSS.
Last but not least, content. What is discussed in the guide? What is marked as important? Do you get a total reference, or do you know you don’t need that, that the real thing you need is a hands on course with day-to-day subjects? Decide what you want to know, just the basics, how to create full layouts, or just how to create a menu using 100% CSS.
It’s up to you now, decide what you need, you know how important the 5 above points are, and where you need to pay attention on. And one last tip, make sure you get some preview videos or sample chapter before following any course, it can save you a lot of time and money at the same time.
Hilco van der Meer