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Does a web designer need to be qualified?
Is qualification required?
Andrea

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 5:31 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,

Can you tell me whether or not it's necessary to have any technical qualifications for someone to refer to themselves as a Web Designer?

Thanks.

 

digicamhelp

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 5:49 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

This is an interesting question.

I have no technical qualifications or formal trainning and still know very little about anything other than using FrontPage to design sites. I only accepted web jobs that fit within my skills. When necessary, I subcontracted work. I spent a considerable amount of time learning how to use FrontPage effectively. I spent many hours each month for over two years in another forum geared to FrontPage users. I receive invaluable help.

I never felt comfortable calling myself a web master. I'm a web designer with a background in arts and graphics. I stopped accepting web design jobs from others when I decided to spend the time developing my own site. Less hassle, and for me, more lucrative.

Andrea

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 6:00 pm on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,

Thank you for replying. Would you say that someone who is learning web design and has no experience of doing any work for other people could still use that title or something else?

Andrea

digicamhelp

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:01 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

I would think you need to get some skills in place before calling yourself a web designer. For example, my degree is in teaching...however I wasn't really a teacher until I got my degree; I was a student.

I think you can call yourself a web designer when you have enough skills to that someone would hire you to build a site for them. I have a friend who created and manages a website for his daughter's business and volunteers to update a site for the community in which he lives. If you ask, he would not call himself a web designer....at least not yet.

topr8

WebmasterWorld Senior Member topr8 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:08 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

>>Can you tell me whether or not it's necessary to have any technical qualifications for someone to refer to themselves as a Web Designer?

of course not, you CAN call yourself a web designer with no qualifications

tomda

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:52 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yeah, you can call yourself a web designer if you do things on your own. Nonetheless, if you want to work for a company or apply for vacant jobs, then qualifications are required (diplomas, professional experience, knowledge of HTML/CSS/PHP/ASP/PEAR, knowledge of MYSQL/ORACLE and may be C++).

My question, have some you done some study on the net to get a n official diploma, this piece of paper that I am lacking which says "Yes, you are qualified and YES, NOW YOU CAN APPLY FOR JOBS IN WEB DOMAIN" :(

digicamhelp

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 4:54 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

of course not, you CAN call yourself a web designer with no qualifications

Then I'm a doctor. ;-) :P

I suppose we can call ourselves anything we want.

topr8

WebmasterWorld Senior Member topr8 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 5:30 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

haha good observation (although suspect doctor, dentist, accountant, lawyer etc could be a grey area - there are recognised prof bodies for them)

i wasn't being a wind up, i really did mean call yourself what you want - the truth is if you are going for jobs without much of a portfolio/experience (and IMHO student portfolios are not the same as real life work) it is your personality and enthusiasm that will get you a job.

nb. i'm not against qualifications in any way!

Animated

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:47 am on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Then I'm a doctor. ;-) :P

I suppose we can call ourselves anything we want.


being a web designer is a broad field, i think whoever that can make and designs simple web sites could consider themself a web designer, then if they wanna be a level higher they can go learn PHP,Perl and etc...

peco

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 2:17 am on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

If you were to apply for a job as a web developer, I don't think you'd get to the interview stage without an MSCA, MSCD or whatever. Or a broad range of skills like mentioned, with experience in Flash, Photoshop, Quark etc.

willybfriendly

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 3:46 am on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Nonetheless, if you want to work for a company or apply for vacant jobs, then qualifications are required (diplomas, professional experience, knowledge of HTML/CSS/PHP/ASP/PEAR, knowledge of MYSQL/ORACLE and may be C++).

HA! I don't think so. I have seen very competent (and some not so competent) people with no paper working in some very prime jobs - US/State govt. jobs where the pay is still decent.

A working knowledge of HTML/CSS is best gained via experience and places like these boards, where one can learn what isn't taught in school.

Server side stuff is a bit steeper if one doesn't have the fundamentals of good design ingrained, but there are plenty of hackers making decent money. I cringe when I look at some of my original code.

Web land is one of the few remaining areas where proven skills are more important than paper, although that is beginning to change. I have seen some real idiots with a piece of paper stating they are qualified. There is stuff they simply don't teach in school, and never will. Most of what I have seen "taught" is MS based stuff. Those folks choke when they have to design for alternative browsers, or use open source programming languages like PHP, Python or MySQL. They might do well with Oracle and ASP, but those solutions really fill a pretty small niche on the web these days.

WBF

Andrea

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 3:14 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,

Thank you for replying. So, really it's possible to learn enough about web design from a book and from here and other places online to become a web designer and refer to yourself as one?

Andrea

twist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 3:48 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

If you were to apply for a job as a web developer, I don't think you'd get to the interview stage without an MSCA, MSCD or whatever. Or a broad range of skills like mentioned, with experience in Flash, Photoshop, Quark etc.

Well, MSCA is for windows servers and might be helpful if trying to set up IIS but is more so for becoming a computer tech (computer babysitter) and the MCSE is the big brother of MSCA. The MSCD isn't going to do you much good in the php/mysql world. It's main focus is in learning MS programs like VB. Learning VB might be good for learning a little about programming but isn't going to help you make websites. As for flash, not really necessary, see any flash on WW? If your going to call yourself a web designer you should probably know something about imaging programs like either fireworks, photoshop or gimp.

If you want to call yourself a web designer/master then you should be ready to answer the following questions,

1) I need to set up a simple ecommerce site for my new business, how much and how long will it take?

2) I want a basic site using this color scheme and I want it to include a forum using the same color scheme and layout, price/time?

3) I need to setup a local directory, it needs to include every sports and shopping site in town, should only be a few hundred pages, how long will it take you to get it done?

4) I want a private photo gallery for my family and friends. I want an on page login system to the gallery, no pop-ups at all.

peco

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 5:02 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Out of curiousity, I was looking at positions for 'web developer' on an IT Jobs placement site. Most of them asked for a recognised qualification like MSCD and/or having skills in Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Flash etc.
I didn't see any asking specifically for HTML and PHP.

abbeyvet

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 5:32 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

I didn't see any asking specifically for HTML and PHP.

Advertising for a web developer and specifying they needed to know HTML would be like advertising for a heart surgeon and specifying that they needed to know how to give an injection. It's a given, not worth mentioning.

I don't know where you looked, but I regularly see jobs advertised that specify experiene with PHP, MySQL, XML and so on.

peco

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 8:28 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Did you have to go far to miss the point?

The question was do you need a technical qualification to call yourself a web designer, developer or whatever. I have never seen someone who is qualified in PHP, i.e. certified. I wouldn't say for definate that is the case because I don't know but if it is, then no one could ask for a qualified PHP scripter.
I have only seen adverts for web developers with a recognised qualification like, MSCD, which covers HTML, XHTML, DHTML, XML, CSS, FTP, Networks, Fireworks, Dreamweaver, Flash, JavaSript, Java Applets, E-Commerce, SQL Server. ASP.NET, ADO.NET, and VB.NET.

All in all, pretty comprehensive.

I haven't seen an advert as specific as HTML and PHP. They must be there because you have seen them. Although to quantify that, I looked on the site given to me by the training centre that I was thinking about going to, to attain the MSCD. That was the site that handled all the training centres placements upon qualification.

Of course you are correct about the HTML thing. If I had realised someone as pedantic as you was going to read it, I would have just said PHP or maybe HTML && PHP.

Incidentally, I stated earlier MCSA, I meant MCAD.

abbeyvet

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 9:09 pm on Jan 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

I completely take your point, and I didn't mean to be pedantic, but you are right, I was. I just meant that it was not terribly likely to be mentioned in an ad. There are people who seem to believe that knowing HTML makes them employable, I know because I regularly have them approach me for work.

The original question was could anyone call themselves a web designer, and in the absense of a widely recognised, relatively uniform, qualification the answer is clearly yes.

However calling yourself one is therefore not very meaningful since there are so many variations of meaning possible.

The 'vet' part of my name is there because I am a vet, as in veterinarian. Not everyone can call themselves a vet, because there is an internationally recognised and well defined set of skills in which you must have proven yourself proficient before you earn the right to use the title.

However I have not worked full time as a vet for more than 6 years, I now work as a web developer. I believe I have the right to use this title based on skillset I have developed but there is no one widely recognised title that covers that skillset.

Basically, if I say I am a vet, everyone knows what that means. If I say I am a web developer, or even a web designer, nobody, not even another web developer/designer, will know without further elaboration what that means.

Animated

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 1:44 am on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

Thank you for replying. So, really it's possible to learn enough about web design from a book and from here and other places online to become a web designer and refer to yourself as one?

As a pure web designer in my opinion all you need to know is 'HTML a must' maybe a design program such a dreamweaver and photoshop and Flash for interactive web design:)
You wanna go a level higher and do server side stuff too then you can learn PHP and SEO lets not forget knowledge is power so the more you know the better:)

happyslob

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 3:16 am on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't think they need qualifications per se, but they need to be able to back up their claims with a portfolio.

For my websites, I've worked with three different designers - all with very different styles. I didn't really care what their credentials were, so long as they could show me what they'd created in the past. One lady made a beautiful site for me, and I think she'd only made her own before that. And the site gets compliments on its clean lines and sort of groovy look. :)

Hope this helps!
Take care,
Christina

twist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 6:24 am on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

I have only seen adverts for web developers with a recognised qualification like, MSCD, which covers HTML, XHTML, DHTML, XML, CSS, FTP, Networks, Fireworks, Dreamweaver, Flash, JavaSript, Java Applets, E-Commerce, SQL Server. ASP.NET, ADO.NET, and VB.NET.

All in all, pretty comprehensive.

I don't know a lot about the current MCSD but I would be willing to bet that the MCSD does not cover Fireworks, Dreamweaver, Flash, and especially Java Applets. Microsoft only teaches Microsoft.

*edit* I looked it up,

[microsoft.com...]

peco

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 7:02 pm on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

All you needed was the tongue out smiley and your post was complete.

Ok, I was quoting from the literature I received from the training centre I was considering. In this literature, it states phases of training, that lead ultimately to the MCSD qualification.

The first phase qualification is "Master Certified Internet Webmaster(CIW)."
Prosoft of America created the CIW designer course so people can 'prove' their ability to design websites as previously companies needing web designers could only employ people who claimed some design experience.
CIW covers all those skills that you correctly say are non-MS.

Phase two is the "Microsoft Certified Applications Developer(MCAD)."
MCAD covers XML, ASP.NET and SQL Server.

Phase three is MCSD, which you know all about because you took the time to research it.

I didn't realise they were all seperate or that one wasn't a pre-requisite for the next, but that was how it was explained to me. A complete structured course, leading to an industry recognised qualification, MCSD.

twist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 7:47 pm on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

"Master Certified Internet Webmaster(CIW)."

Honest truth, I have the CIW certification (not the master CIW). I never took the CIW exam because I took the i-Net+ and if you sent them a few bucks they would give you the first CIW cert since the i-Net+ was the same basically. I, at the time, planned on getting the rest of the CIW certs until I got the Master CIW. This was about the time I discovered WW and learned that the tests offered typically out of date non-specific information. All the answers are here and on the web, not just one authors or certs narrow opinions.

I fell into the certs=job trap years ago, I have buried in a closet somewhere an MCSA, A+, Network+, i-Net+(& CIW), Server+, associates in CS, and associates in computer administration. They were a good starting point and gave me a good understanding of the basics, but they did not get me a job. Since I got my websites going, i've been turning down job offers.

If you want to become a great webmaster go to school and take classes in business, law, marketing, communication, accounting, writing, art, and economics. These are the skills that will give you an edge over other webmasters.

peco

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 8:05 pm on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

I agree! What you say about the information being on this site and others, is the reason I didn't bother going ahead with the course. And to compound that, most of the learning was done at home anyway. That was by either supplied books or the internet.
Considering they wanted in the region of 6000, I didn't think it worthwhile.

MichaelBluejay

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 10:51 pm on Jan 29, 2006 (gmt 0)

The main criterion for any decriptive label is whether you can do it. If you can ride a bicycle, you're a bicyclist. If you can design web pages, you're a web designer.

The next criterion is how *well* you can do it. If you learn a couple of easy songs on the piano you probably wouldn't call yourself a pianist. If all you can do on the web is to put up some ugly pages created with Front Page then you probably wouldn't call yourself a web designer.

In between beginner and expert is a whole range of ability. I'll never be good enough at piano that people would come to a concert featuring only me, but I'm good enough to be part of a band. I don't know PHP or XML, but I know HTML, Perl, and mySQL and my pages look okay and are commercially successful. I never took a class. If people like your work, you're a web designer.

Andrea

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 11:47 pm on Jan 29, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,

Thank you everyone for replying. Can you tell me whether or not it's possible to learn Perl and mySQL at home from home or online at no cost? What about Javascript and all those other programs?

Can they all be learn at no cost from home?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Andrea

abbeyvet

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:12 am on Jan 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

All can be learned at home at no cost in money though a fair cost in time, they are well served by many tutorials and numerous forums offer support. A good recent book helps too, just to get the basics in place.

I have always found learning by doing the most effective method - learn a few basics, jump in and start using them and you will pick up more as you go along.

MichaelBluejay

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 1:55 am on Jan 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

[quote]Can you tell me whether or not it's possible to learn Perl and mySQL at home from home or online at no cost? [/b]

Absolutely, but there's a big caveat: If you're the kind of person who would even ask that question in the first place, you might not be the kind of person who can easily pick up those kinds of skills on your own.

No insult intended, it's just that successful self-starters don't need someone to tell them whether it's possible, they just assume it is and jump right in.

twist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 3:26 am on Jan 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

Thank you everyone for replying. Can you tell me whether or not it's possible to learn Perl and mySQL at home from home or online at no cost? What about Javascript and all those other programs?

HTML, XML and CSS are sets of standards and rules. All they require is memorization and understanding the concept of the box model.

Javascript, Perl, PHP, and ASP are programming languages. Programming requires memorization but also requires understanding concepts and math. The good thing about programming is once you learn one language you can quickly learn more.

MySQL and databases are slightly different than both HTML and programming. They require understanding algorithms and understanding some hard to grasp concepts.

Andrea

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 12:54 pm on Jan 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,

Thank you for the information everyone.

Andrea


Lobo

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2699 posted 2:21 pm on Jan 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

Of course you don't need qualifications to say you are good when you can easily be judged on the work you do..

The best designers I know and have ever known have not followed so called formal qualifications, natural ability, tons of hard work and attitude will get you far further than any certificate...

When I started out I took a 6 month design course, for myself to know what it was about then got my foot in the door of an agency and learned actually doing the job for real...

I guess how ever you get there is fine, but to say you need or employers expect qualifications is completely wrong.. and ill-informed..

I would also say that if you are in to database, backend or systems, then the letters do make a difference...

This 40 message thread spans 2 pages: 40 ( [1] 2 > >
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