As with many things in life, the best way to learn to code is to practice coding. Here are the 10 best web development tutorials for beginners in 2019.
Coursera is currently the largest MOOC (massive open online course) on the market, with more than 25 million learners, 149 university partners, and 2000+ courses (at the time of this writing).
Most courses are free, unless you want to upgrade your online university experience with perks like certificates and extra help from instructors. Coursera offers its own certificate programs called “specializations” for around $40 to $150, and fully online Masters degrees, like this Master of Computer Science in Data Science program from University of Illinois Urbana Champaign.
Founded by Harvard University and MIT in 2012, edX is a non-profit open-source MOOC where you can find a wide variety of courses from top universities and industry leaders like the University of Pennsylvania or Microsoft.
Courses are free, and upon completion you have the option to pay for an official certificate. You can learn front-end fundamentals from the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) itself, the international organization responsible for managing global web standards like HTML5. Or get a professional certificate in Agile development using Rails from Berkeley.
There must have been something in the water at Stanford University, because the fourth largest MOOC on the web holds humble origins as an experiment by Sebastian Thrun, best known as the brain behind Google’s Self Driving Car, and his Stanford CS221 co-professor. They launched a free “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence” course online, received more than 100,000 enrollments, and helped kickstart the MOOC sensation.
Udacity offers an opportunity to learn computer science from industry professionals from tech companies like Google, GitHub, and Amazon. Udacity’s paid certificates are called “nanodegrees,” which allow you to gain credentials for industry-specific skillsets such as machine learning engineer, full-stack web developer, or mobile web specialist. You can always skip the project and take the courses individually for free — it just depends on how much you want to gain from the experience.
What makes Codecademy unique is that you complete these lessons and tutorials entirely in their browser-based Integrated Development Environment (IDE), which allows you to practice what they teach in real time. Their catalog also includes projects and quizzes for Pro members so you can put your knowledge to work.
5. Khan Academy
Khan Academy takes a university-style deep dive into the fundamentals and also covers broader computer science concepts such as information theory. Videos are hosted on YouTube, so if you’d rather just search for a particular language or tutorial you can head on over to their channel and avoid the course navigation altogether.
Beyond these courses, there are many blog posts and tutorials for a wide range of languages, including GoLang, Sass, and ASP.NET—just to give you an idea of the variety of technologies you might find on this site. Need a tutorial that will walk you through both theory and practice? Scotch.io is the site for you.
7. Odin Project
Coding boot camps are all the rage these days, especially for those with little or no programming experience who want to make a career change. Unfortunately, factors like price and location can prove to be obstacles to a lot of people.
Everything from the website to the curriculum that it hosts is open source, meaning you may one day help contribute to the Odin Project as an accomplished alumnus.
Looking for a way to learn to code while helping the world become a better place? freeCodeCamp gives you all the usual perks of a coding camp—tutorials, challenges, projects, connections, and certificates—but at no cost to you.
If you already have some coding experience under your belt, HackerRank gives you an opportunity to pit your web development skills against programmers across the globe. Some people learn best in competitive environments and the thrill of climbing the leaderboard might be just the thing you need to motivate your continued growth as a developer. Earn points by completing coding challenges. Win prizes at hackathons and other competitions.
A wide variety of languages are supported on the site, including Java, C++, Ruby, Python, and SQL. As an added bonus, HackerRank challenges are currently trending as a filter for hiring managers in the tech sector.
Looking for a coding “dojo” to sharpen your skills? Codewars is a martial arts themed coding practice site where you complete challenges called “kata” to gain “honor” to rank up and ascend the leaderboards.
Bonus: Coding communities and events
Beyond tutorial sites and online courses, there are online communities that are integral to one’s growth as a web developer.
- Struggling with a piece of code? Stack Overflow is the most trusted place to ask questions and receive detailed answers from other developers over the web.
- Looking for someplace outside of the official channels of a given language or framework to have an open forum for discussion? There’s usually a Reddit thread for every language or framework you can think of, and more general resources like r/WebdevTutorials.
- Eager to give back to the world and encourage underrepresented groups to go into coding? Consider joining a community like Rails Girls, which encourages girls to learn to programme through Ruby on Rails—Upwork product architect, Aurel Canciu volunteers for them during his free time. There are many groups and communities out there to not only continue your own growth but to help others excel as well.