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Mulberry Classes

Mulberry staff have extensive experience in the theory and active implementation of XML-based systems.

We offer public classes in Rockville, Maryland throughout the year. These courses provide technical introductions to several basic XML standards: XML, XSLT, and Schematron and one class in some advanced techniques for processing text using XSLT.

We also deliver custom on-site classes and presentations appropriate for executives, managers, authors and editors, and production and technical people. Class time is spent on the skills and knowledge people need to perform their jobs. Subject matter includes the concepts underlying structured data and how to work with XML files, as well as introductions to core XML standards.

Be they public or custom, Mulberry’s courses are taught by experienced practitioners who work with as well as teach XML, XSLT, and Schematron. Basing our teaching on an understanding of what markup technologies, at their simple core, really are (and are not), we work both to provide a scrupulous and exact view of the technologies at a surface level – their syntax, their applications, how they work together or fail to, where the easy and hard bits are – and also to communicate this core vision, i.e., why these standards are so enormously powerful and liberating when they are used sympathetically and applied properly (and why so limiting when they are not).

As a consequence, our students are generally able not only to solve immediate problems, but also to understand and navigate the terrain, to see the most direct way to realizing the technologies’ potential in a concrete situation, and to identify traps that may constrain a project’s success.

For more information about our public or custom classes, please see our class schedule, call us at 301/315-9631, or email

Custom Classes

Mulberry teaches customized classes in XML, XSLT with XPath, Schematron, and SGML topics. When possible, we prefer our classes to be about half lecture and half hands-on exercises. Our typical class is for 4-20 people from a single organization or group of related organizations, with the same general background and reason for wanting a class. We have taught groups as diverse as:

  • Production staff for a commercial publisher of scientific materials
  • Product development engineers of a large software company
  • Electronic publications librarians of a major research library
  • Technical support staff for the publications group of a semiconductor manufacturer
  • Vice presidents and division managers of a large educational publisher
  • Technical writers of an aircraft manufacturer
  • Government affairs representatives of a pharmaceutical company
  • Magazine and book editors
  • Editorial staff for a journal publisher
  • Publications managers for a tractor manufacturer

In organizing a class, we ask the sponsor of the class to tell us about the participants: what they already know, why they are interested, and what they will need to know. If applicable, we want to know what XML/SGML tools they have or will have, and what applications they will be involved with.

We then create a draft outline for a class we think will meet the participants’ needs, and discuss the outline with the sponsor. After that discussion, we can quote a price for the class.

Class Logistics

Our courses are taught by experienced practitioners who both work with and teach XML, XSLT, and Schematron. Dependent on the subject matter and course length, classes are lecture or a mixture of lecture and hands-on exercises. In-house classes are small (a maximum of 12 students), so register early.

Classes can be taught at your site or in our Rockville office (outside Washington, DC). A typical class is composed of 4-20 people, but we have taught classes as small as 1 student and as large as 1,000.

For hands-on classes, we assume that you will do the exercises on your Macintosh or Windows laptop, but we can supply classroom computers for participants on request.

For classes at our site:

Our “no-frills” set-up provides coffee, soft drinks, and donuts. You buy your own lunch. (We provide a list of local restaurants, or bring your own if you prefer.)

Mulberry’s offices are in Rockville, Maryland (outside Washington, DC). We are 4 blocks from the Rockville Metro station. Our quaint and historic building provides access by stairs only (the building has neither elevator nor ramp; we are on the second floor). Please see our directions, and contact us at 301/315-9631 or if you want more information.

Inclement weather (snow) may cause winter classes to start late or be rescheduled. For more information, please see our snow policy.

Payment can be made by check, credit card (VISA, Mastercard, or American Express), or by Government Purchase/training orders on or before the first day of class.

Class Formats


Lectures are talks given by Mulberry personnel from prepared slides. We encourage participants to ask questions, and such talks often become quite interactive. Lectures are used for concept familiarization; participants are primarily listening. However, some lecture classes include paper-and-pencil exercises, as well as group discussions.


Hands-on classes are a mixture (we aim for about half and half) of lecture and hands-on computer-based exercises. Students work at laptops or workstations, creating files and running prepared exercises. Formal objectives are established for each class, but the general purpose of any hands-on class is to build proficiency in staff who will be the ones getting their hands dirty in XML or SGML projects. Students are expected to do all of the exercises, and the instructor helps each student finish each exercise before the class moves on. Each topic, tool, or technique is introduced in lecture; an example may be provided or a short demonstration given; and then the students perform an exercise to practice what they have just learned.

Other Training Sources

If Mulberry does not offer training to meet your needs we suggest you consider the many classes offered by members of the XML Guild.