Early thoughts on TT284 and M250

In my last post, the structure of TT284 Web Technologies left me scratching my head. In contrast with M250, TT284 bucks the trend of nicely laying out what you should be studying week-by-week.

Block 1 gives you six weeks to get through a basic introduction to html and CSS. It splits the content into six parts, with a case study and TMA01. My initial advice would be to aim to cover more than one part per week. Try and do the TMA as you go along, rather than leave it to the end.

The case study is really a piece of additional reading with accompanying videos. It provides a background to what you must do for the TMA. Sometimes the module materials will direct you to watch a relevant section of the case study.

The best piece of advice is to acquire a basic understanding of html and CSS before you start the module. The module assumes no prior knowledge. However, having some previous knowledge would sure have helped to make things go more smoothly.

I did this for Java, and it has proved helpful with M250 Object-oriented Java Programming. Arguably, though, there is greater support for this module. You have a textbook and online ‘companion guides’ to each chapter written by the module team.

The only criticism I would make is that the textbook for M250 does not contain answers to any of the exercises. This makes it, on its own, unsuitable for distance learning and self-study. However, the companion guides provides suggested answers and commentary for selected exercises in the book. They include additional exercises devised by the module team.    

Many times, the companion guides for M250 tell you to skip certain exercises. Of course, you can do them if you want the extra practice. However, you might lack the time and, of course, there are no answers provided for these exercises.

I previously said I had booked up to all the tutorials. So far, they have mostly been value-for-money. There are more recordings than in previous years for both TT284 and M250 and almost all have provided the option of downloading the slides.

Attendance at tutorials so far has been relatively high, regularly up into double figures. This may not sound much; they rarely broke out of single figures in Level One modules. Perhaps the novelty of starting a new module has not yet worn off. Or, it could simply be that Level Two modules are posing much more of a challenge, as they should.

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  1. Hi,

    Nice comments about these modules. Are you aware of any online resources such as where the modules textbooks can be downloaded in advance? I’ll start the modules in October and could use the time until then to prepare fir the modules.
    Same applies for the module TM254 Managing IT.
    Thanks in advance
    Kind regards

    1. Thanks Jose. Not any legal websites as far as I am aware, but if you are able to log into your Open University account ahead of October, you will find some sample module materials by clicking the Study tab off Student Home. Then select the ‘Discover’ tab and ‘Discover Your Modules’ from the drop down menu. For those modules that still have a physical book, you might be able to find second hand copies on eBay or similar websites.

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