Robust Note Taking Assignment: Emphasis

Don’t forget to emphasize!

Key Terms

Emphasis: the most important element on the page should be most prominent, the second most important element should be secondary in prominence, and so on.

Visual hierarchy: the arrangement of visual elements such as type and images on the page according to their order of importance and, consequently, emphasis.

Focal point: the visual element or part of a page that is most emphasized and therefore where the reader’s eye goes first.

Accents: obviously accent the other important points in the page

Content: the words, phrases, and graphics

Body copy: the small type

All-caps: designer speak for all capital letters


Brief Summary

What you choose to emphasize depends on the content of the message and which parts of the message are most important. You have to decide what information is most important and make it bigger, bold it, or add color. Emphasis proceeds in a logical manner and makes the page more visually interesting to look at. It is important to become more sensitive to the use of visual hierarchy and emphasis to be able to direct the attention of the reader when there is more than one piece of important information. You can train yourself by becoming more aware of what you notice first, second, etc and also being aware of what techniques caught your attention. A well thought out emphasis plan can help you influence what people think of first when they see your design. A clear visual hierarchy of information has a dramatic effect on the reader’s perception of your design. Beware of using all-caps. It gives the appearance of shouting and is difficult to read. Using images can also improve the appeal of the design. Be careful not to overuse emphasis.

Connections to Course Outcomes

Emphasis can play an important role in our class wiki so that we are able to point out the most important information that we want our readers to see. We need to be very careful to make sure that everything is cohesive and we aren’t overusing emphasis  because that can draw attention away from what’s most important to our audience.  We want our wiki to be visually appealing and I believe that the discussion we had in class allowed us to figure out what would be too much emphasis and what’s the right amount that we want to use for our project purposes.


Works Cited

Graham, L. (2005). basics of design: layout and typography for beginners. (2nd ed. ed.). Canada: Thomson Delmar Learning.

C.R.A.P. Robust Reading Assignment

Key Terms

Contrast: use separation for unlike elements (bold, whiting, line thickness, sizes)

Repetition: repeating aspects of design (Titles, 36 pts, underlining, hyperlink, shapes)

Alignment: justifying to emphasize key points (left, right, center, top, bottom, flush – text to picture)

Proximity: limit and separate unlike elements (separate elements with white space, lines, colors). put everything that is alike together


Brief Summary

Contrasting elements will help the reader figure out which page elements are related and which are separate. Good contrast separates main elements on a page and allows readers not to be distracted by similar elements on other sections. Don’t be afraid to make things dramatically different. The repeating nature of weblog entries down a page let’s you control how the user’s eye is guided down the layout of your site, and the correct spacing and design is crucial or else entries will cram into each other, users won’t be able to find key elements, or readers won’t be able to read  and comprehend your writing as well as they should. Repetition reinforces meaning to users and organizes information in a cohesive manner. This allows for visual consistency. Quality alignment and spacing is important in a layout design. Use left or right alignments, center the headings of pages but not the body, and use hard edges to line up all other elements. Proximity allows similar information to be grouped together to form a cohesive whole. Shows which page elements are group together and which are separate.

Connections to Course Outcomes

 C.R.A.P. relates to the course outcomes because the visual appeal of a webpage/blog/etc. plays a large role in the effectiveness of digital writing. We wouldn’t be so drawn to sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr if it weren’t for the way they use contrast, repetition, alignment, and proximity to draw us in. These sites are very effective in gaining their audience’s attention and keeping it.

Works Cited

Barryrunner. (2007, November 29). C.R.A.P. – Basic Layout and Design Principles for Webpages. Retrieved September 24, 2012, from

Replies To Classmates

Comment 1

Comment 2

Comment 3

Comment 4

Comment 5


From my classmates, I gained an understanding of how much digital writing is part of our everyday lives, how artists can get around illegal downloads by using variability, that creators of copyrighted materials don’t mind when their work is used for parody purposes, questioned if the manipulation of technology will impact what is known as reality, and realized that the gap between old and new media is slowly closing so that what’s considered old media will soon no longer exist.