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Blog Post

Best Ways to Learn JavaScript Today

There have never been more opportunities to learn this in-demand language

JavaScript has emerged in the past couple years as the de facto expression of next generation web technologies, and a critical component of HTML5 technologies – along with CSS and JQuery. JavaScript is really ubiquitous – it’s literally showing up everywhere! There are many other reasons why JavaScript and JS-based tools like JSON and Node.js are becoming the wave of the future. JavaScript is the #1 most-used language on GitHub, and this trend is only going to increase. Gartner stated in its strategic trends forecast for 2014 that JavaScript improvements will continue to “push HTML5 and the browser as a mainstream enterprise application development environment.”

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In the battle for the development of the next generation web the star of the show has really become JavaScript. As one article put it, “JavaScript is the number one language in the world; it’s the language of the web, and a starting point for so many new developers . . .”

What’s the best way to go about learning JavaScript? Well, fortunately, there have never been more opportunities to learn this in-demand language. Whether through online tutorials, on-site coding bootcamps, or online coding bootcamps – there are plenty of forums and options to choose from. Let’s run through and describe some of them.

Codecademy
Codecademy
is an online interactive platform that offers free coding classes in six different programming languages like Python, PHP, jQuery, JavaScript, and Ruby, as well as markup languages including HTML and CSS. The site is easy to navigate. Just click on the language you want to learn and you’re brought to an interactive window where you enter the practice code for each lesson. The JavaScript Fundamentals course is available here and guides the learner through a series of lessons on functions, for loops, while loops, control flow, data structures, and objects. Upon entering the portal you find to the left of each interactive window step by step instructions to guide you through each lesson. In each module learners first cover the theory and then immediately follow up each lesson with a gamified application that makes the principles fun and intuitive. If you get stuck on a particular issue, just click the “Get a hint” tab and a popup offers some help to move you along.

Udacity
Udacity
has gotten a lot of attention in recent years as one among a growing number of MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Course platforms, which have sprung up in the last few years. Udacity is one of the earliest and best known examples of this new educational disruptive space. Udacity has creatively innovated what it calls a “new type of credential” to prepare workers for the new digital workforce through what it calls Nanodegrees. The 5 current offerings are Introduction to Programming, Front-End Web Developer, Full Stack Web Developer, Data Analyst, and iOS Developer. Each Nanodegree requires 10 hours minimum per week for 6-12 months at a modest cost of $200/month. The return on investment is a verified Nanodegree certificate along with an industry verified project portfolio – entry points to a good paying tech job in a high demand field. The Front-End Web Developer option provides students with access and immersion in HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, and the supporting tools needed to build stunning user experiences.

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General Assembly
General Assembly
launched 4 years ago with the idea of disrupting tech education. It has done this successfully by providing a college-like setting without really being one. GA offers a wide range of full-time, part-time, online classes, as well as local workshops. The model is definitely to offer computer programming, innovation, and business classes in as many formats and to accommodate as many schedules as possible, from 90 minute sessions to full courses. All sessions are taught by leading industry experts. GA offers a number of options for learning JavaScript, ranging from the one-day immersion workshop for beginners to a 10-week part-time Front-end Web development course that meets at various onsite locations. For those who just want to learn at their own pace GA offers a free online platform, Dash, which teaches HTML, CSS, and JavaScript through fun projects on a simple interface that is accessible from your web browser.

Bloc
Due to breakthroughs in HTML5 technologies that give fast and responsive audio and video capabilities, online coding bootcamps have recently given remote students means to effectively learn code from the local café, their living room, or wherever is convenient. One of the most well-known and innovative new forums for this approach is Bloc. Here you can choose one of five tracks: UX Design, iOS Development, Front-end Web Development, Android Development, or Full Stack Development. The price is $4999 but it seems to be worth it in relation to the course content, mentorship, and guidance that students get. Bloc works on an “apprenticeship” model which means you focus your time on doing projects and then culminate in a “capstone.” Bloc also affords lots of flexibility for completing the courses; you can go with 12 weeks, 18 weeks, or 36 week sprints – depending on how much time you can invest each week. Mentors are assigned to each student and are available each week for guidance and Q&A. The Front-end Web Development path gives a full immersion in HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript along with other front-end frameworks and libraries like JQuery and AngularJS.

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JavaScript is fast becoming a central part of our digital future as more and more technologies are relying upon this codebase for their basic functionality. With all the jobs out there that require knowledge of JS, what are you waiting for? If you want to speak the language of the digital future then familiarize yourself with JavaScript and how it works today. There have never been more ways or opportunities to learn this high-demand language. And in case you have trouble finding a JavaScript learning program suitable to your needs or schedule, just move on over to Course Report and enter your location and you’ll be sure to find something. And who knows? With your new JavaScript skills you might write the next cool application that changes the world!

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More Stories By Hovhannes Avoyan

Hovhannes Avoyan is the CEO of PicsArt, Inc.,