Learning Resources to Start in Web Development

When I meet people and tell them what I do for a living, I often get a look of interest sometimes it seems like I told people I am a wizard who makes magical objects. Then the questions start, “How did you get into development?”, “Is it hard to get into development?”, “How do you even get started”. I thought today I start off by explaining what I have found to be the best ways to start in web development, as a self-taught developer I found it so daunting trying to pick what or who to begin with. So if you are ready to start your journey into web development, grab a drink, and read on.

Free Code Camp

Free code camp is a nonprofit organization the idea to teach code to anybody who has a web browser for free! Free Code Camp with teaching you web development from the very basics to complex algorithm work all whilst inside your web browser.  The code is taught in short bite-sized pieces, I’m talking 2-5 minute lessons that create miniature sections of the course. After you spent 10+ hours working on the basics of HTML and CSS you get thrown in to two projects. One is a personal portfolio and the other is a tribute page, they give you a full working example and they say make it look similar, you can use their forums when you have questions as you try and figure it out. Once you finish Free Code Camp, they will get you to work on projects for nonprofits to improve your skills and get you experience in the field. This is huge when you apply for your first full time paying job. If you are interested here is a link to their website, go ahead and click it and get going!

The Odin Project

The Odin Project is a full stack Web development curriculum that will always be free. The Odin project is all about creating projects as you learn, to give you a nice portfolio and also real world development vs the classic Hello World web page. You will learn about HTML, CSS, JS, Ruby, Ruby on Rails and even databases as you go through, they have a fantastic community that you can ask any questions to. The people over at Odin project don’t believe in leaving you high and dry once you finish their curriculum, they will guide you through Job interview prep, what to expect and how to get your portfolio out there. Interested? Check out their website!

Udemy ($5-$20) 

Udemy is the Netflix of learning anything that comes to mind, from cooking to coding to yoga! The courses are developed by freelancers/ entrepreneurs and experts, these courses are in depth and help you produce web applications that use the latest technologies. The advantage of Udemy over other online resources, you can pick the course you want and watch pieces you need to over and over again which when you are starting out can really help cement what they are teaching. The disadvantage of Udemy is if you don’t know what you want or who is a good teacher it can be very overwhelming. Seriously, they have 65,000 courses as of this writing and adding more daily! I chose a few to get you started with learning web development on their site:

Pluralsight ($29 monthly / $299 annually)

Pluralsight is expert-led online training that is used by a vast amount of individuals and business to teach new technologies or even brush up on ones that a user already knows. The difference between Pluralsight and many other sites is they use expert-curated paths that slowly increase and reinforce your knowledge of the technology. These paths then link to other paths to give you an example if you follow the HTML5 path after you are finished you can move on to the CSS path or the JavaScript path. This gives you a really in-depth working knowledge of a language before moving on to another language. This is truly worth the money if you want to get up to speed quickly and efficiently, the cost may seem daunting at first but it works out to be 82 cents a day which in my opinion is a bargain!

I hope you have enjoyed this short article on my favorite sites to begin your life as a web developer.

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