Producing instructions to connect to the university wireless network

We have recently been working on a new set of instructions at work for students to connect to the wireless using their laptops and I’m not very happy with how it’s turned out.

The problem? Not enough screenshots!

Due to the cost of printing, the booklet needs to be exactly 4 pages (printed 2 pages per sheet, double-sided). Two out of 4 pages of the booklet is dedicated to the front and back cover, leaving the ACTUAL instructions to fit on 2 pages.

I wouldn’t call the instructions straightforward, which includes installing 3 certificates and configuring a wireless profile before connecting to the secured network. That’s a lot to fit on 2 pages, hence we had to do away with screenshots.

We have an open wireless network alongside the secured one, which only allows access to the university’s Web pages. My suggestion was to put up instructions on the IT Services Webpage for students to access by first connecting to the open wireless network.

A web-based delivery method has the following advantages:

  • The instructions will be available online for students to refer to whenever they need it whereas printed instructions would normally be discarded once done with
  • The instructions can be made accessible to a wider range of students, by adhering to Web accessibility guidelines
  • No need for management to worry about printing costs
  • Plenty of screenshots will make following the instructions easier for less confident students. Also screenshots will be helpful where students have Windows installed in another laguage as is th case with many international students.

With no immediate plans to get some web-based instructions online I have decided to take up the challenge myself to produce my own Web version of the wireless instructions for Windows XP, Vista and 7.

I want to start off by reading up on accessibility and the use of multimedia in eLearning  and would ideally like the instructions accessible to screen reader users.

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