Convenience is the top driver for people using the mobile web – so that same ease of use needs to be built in from the beginning. JISC CETIS’s top tips give advice to educational developers about how to make that design happen.

Top tips
for the
mobile web



There is no such thing as the Mobile Web

Design for the usual internet and then make your site adaptable for mobile devices for example decreasing the screen size using CSS media queries and then scaling up for larger devices like tablets and PCs by progressively enhancing access for larger audiences.


Keep it small

Focus on the essentials for the mobile context: page size, stylesheets, scripts, navigation, images. Keep the size down: remember users are paying for their mobile data.


Start using HTML5

No more pondering on whether it’s ready or not – it is, and is already supported by all modern mobile browsers. If incorporating media, you can be looking to use the <video> & <audio> elements supported by native browser instead of Flash.


Look at the templates and frameworks available

There are many freely available tools to get you started and ease development. These can help you with issues such as cross-browser compatibility and optimisation and scripting for touch interactions and page animations.


Include a link to the full desktop view

Your visitors may want to delve deeper into your site. Give them choice.


Use available resources

For resources on HTML5, CSS, APIs, web standards and tools for web developers, check out the W3C’s Mobile Web Initiative.


Use the W3C’s Mobile Web checking service

Compare the findings for your service with your peers as illustrated in a UK Web Focus blog post.

Find out more…

JISC CETIS, the Centre for Educational Technology and Interoperability Standards, provides advice to the UK post-16 and higher education sectors on educational technology and standards.

JISC mobile learning projects.

Read Mark Power’s blog.

Use #jiscinform31 when sharing this article on Twitter or on blog posts.

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Mobile learning article in JISC Inform 27.