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HTML, the Hypertext Markup Language, is the basis for communication between a web server and a browser. It is through HTML documents that you determine what a user sees when visiting your web site. Because of this, every web developer needs a basic understanding of HTML coding, even if you use tools to create most of your HTML pages.

The eXtensible HyperText Markup Language (XHTML) is a successor to HTML that follows the rules of XML. In today's web environment, developers need to know both languages.

The course begins by describing the syntax rules for XHTML and how they differ from those of HTML. As you will see, you can develop documents that conform to both. You will learn strategies for developing reusable web documents and see the tools available for creating them.

The course then introduces XHTML by describing the structure of a basic web document and the types of elements you will encounter. After learning about the most commonly used elements, you will see how Cascading Style Sheets can be used to control how these elements are displayed by a browser. The course wraps up basic HTML and XHTML elements with a discussion of hypertext links.

Approximate Study Time: 3.5 hours


After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Describe the differences between HTML and XHTML
  • Determine whether a document conforms to XHTML syntax rules
  • Identify the elements that must be present in every XHTML document
  • Identify tools that can be used to create XHTML documents
  • Identify the XHTML element used to define a specified document component
  • Code the XHTML elements to identify the following document components:
    • Headings
    • Paragraphs
    • Line breaks
    • Preformatted text
    • Boldface and italic text
    • Superscripts and subscripts
    • Special characters
    • Internal and external links
    • Mail-to links
  • Define a Cascading Style Sheet
  • Specify the CSS rule to be applied to a given element
  • Define CSS rules that apply to all elements of a given type or only to selected elements
  • Given a display formatting requirement for a specified XHTML element, identify the CSS property that can be used to achieve the desired result
  • Use the <div> and <span> elements to apply a style rule to a group of elements

Topic Outline

Getting Started with XHTML

XHTML Basics

Cascading Style Sheets

CSS Properties

Linking Web Pages


This course should be taken by the individuals responsible for implementing an organization's web site. The audience includes webmasters, content developers, application programmers, and system administrators.


This course assumes that you are familiar with the concepts and basic operations of both IBM i and personal computer systems.

In addition, you should have an understanding of the role of HTML, XML, and XHTML in an ebusiness environment. This prerequisite can be satisfied by completing the first course of this series, eBusiness: From HTML to WebSphere. You may also have obtained these skills by taking other courses or through relevant work experience.