MDN is a well-known resource for web developers. MDN has, historically, focused mostly on advanced and intermediate web developers, with very little content specifically for those who are new to web development (or a specific skill). This gap leads new developers to use other sites to learn basic skills. The Learning Area project on MDN will address this gap by creating a new "zone" for beginners (and those expanding their current skills). The goal of the project is to create a curriculum for learning web development, with great content, examples, and ways to test your knowledge.
See the Documentation status page for detailed information about the current state of this content.
Join the project
MDN is built by you, the reader! If you'd like to help make this documentation real, we'd like to hear from you. You may contact the writing team by clicking on their names above, or on our mailing list. If you're a new MDN contributor, please have a look at our contributor guide. You can also join the conversation in our IRC channel, #mdn.
Any one who wants to get involved with this project is welcome. This page provides information about the project and its progress. Everything is discussed directly on the dev-mdc mailing list. A weekly meeting is held every Monday to discuss the progress and planning of the project.
Jeremie is the resource leading that project, feel free to contact with any questions. He's available, for sure, on IRC every Monday (European time) on the various MDN channels (#mdn, #mdndev) and more.
The overall goals of the project are:
- Improve the discoverability of beginner contents: We have some existing contents but it is pretty hard to find. We need to organize it in a better way for beginners.
- Improve the quantity of beginner contents: While writing we mainly focus on average and advanced users. As a consequence, we lack some serious beginner oriented contents. We need to write those missing contents and organize them with the existing contents to make easier for everybody to access and contribute to them.
- Improve the quality of beginner contents: Still, we have some existing content for beginners but we need to organize it, complete it and make it more appealing.
- Make sure beginners are taught well during their journey to the Web: MDN is not the only resource out there to learn the Web. Beyond our own contents, it's part of the Mozilla mission to help discover and found useful good resources to learn about the web.
In order to get some rational measurement about the success of our actions, the following metrics are suggested:
- Measure the increase number of unique visitors on beginner contents:
That would be a good sign that our beginner contents is easier to reach. For 2015, we expect to get 580 000 unique visitors to our Learn zone and Glossary by the end of the year.
- Measure the increase number of returning visitors on beginner contents:
That would be a good sign that the beginners content is appealing for them.
- Measure the increase of time per page on the beginners content:
That would be a sign that more beginners read and learn from that content.
- Measure the decrease of bounce rate on the beginners content:
That would be a sign that more beginners read and learn more from content on MDN
- Measure bounce to third party resources we selected:
That would be the sign that more users trust MDN as a reliable source of information regarding third party content.
- Measure the increase of incoming links to MDN beginner contents:
That would be the sign that MDN is considered as a trustable resource for beginners.
In addition, we should try to gather direct feedback on the improvements which are to be made.
Note: This project is action-driven, not time-driven. This means that we will do what needs to be done to create this content, regardless of how long it takes. However, to avoid being bogged down in this project forever, it is broken down into small, actionable steps which let us measure progress frequently.
The year 2014 was dedicated to organize and set up the Glossary and Learn zone in order to have a place to start.
Plan for 2015 are the following:
- Glossary improvement
- Continue to add new terms.
- Create topic glossaries for specific area of knowledge through tagging and kumascript.
- Learn zone improvement
- Clean up or create web technologies tutorials for beginners (HTML, CSS, JS, and SVG).
- Create a new learning pathway to help beginners creating mobile web sites.
- Contribution improvement
- Better shape and organize contribution
- Better coordinate works with WebMaker
- Better advertise the project.
Note: The planning and sharing of information about concreate tasks to do in the project are done through a trello board. Each contributor is free to use it to organize it's one contribution.
See the "How to contribute" dedicated page.
We hold a weekly project meeting, which everyone's welcome to attend. The meeting is held in the #mdn IRC channel every Monday at 10:00 AM PDT (18:00 UTC, 19:00 CET).
Agenda and notes: WikiMo
Work in progress
See the trello board and the doc status pages:
- Kick off
- Creating a survey about MDN and third party web sites for beginners
- Gathering initial feedback (We must do things with the webmaker team)
- Spreading the survey (dev-mdc dev-mdn, education, webmaker, engagement-developers, mozillan, reps-general)
- synthesize the survey and the raw feedback
- Spread the survey results: File:Learnin-area-survey-2014.pdf
- Inventory MDN content for beginners, intermediate, and advanced users (considered done even if it will be subject to change)
- Planning meeting with the WebMaker team on May 28/29
- Define how to structure beginner content
- Results of the "Tree of knowledge" workshop during the MDN Work week-end on March 2014
- It will help to tag content with http://goo.gl/vpxkP1 (Webmaker FTW)
- Draft plan is: https://etherpad.mozilla.org/learning-area-structure
- Mock up for a possible Learning Zone landing page: https://moqups.com/JeremiPat/9MbRALc2
- Sort out the results of the code sample survey
- Set up the Documentation status page for the Learning Zone
- The legacy learning area (pre redesign): https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/learn
- Chris Mills awesome work:
- Notes from MozFest 2013: https://teach.etherpad.mozilla.org/scrum7-future?
- WebMaker project info:
- NOTE:This project is a complement to the webmaker initiative, not a competitor. It can be considered as a concrete implementation of some of the webmaker ideas. Due to its nature MDN will focus on the following skills define by the Web Literacy Standard: Web Mechanics, Composing for the Web, Design and Accessibility, Coding/scripting, and Infrastructure.
- Definition of HTML tag by WebMaker: https://etherpad.mozilla.org/simple-mdn
- The Opera Curriculum
- Learning pathway
Existing sites for beginners
These web sites are potential sources of inspiration when creating content for new Web developers.
- https://www.khanacademy.org (not web related but good ideas for inspiration)
- Very cool interactive videos (wich use of the full potential of the web platform)
The following ideas are not critical for the project but could be some very nice enhancements.
- Add a "search per level" option on our search engine
- Add a more advance code samples tool