2 Replies - 744 Views - Last Post: 10 December 2017 - 01:47 PM

#1 Brianvm   User is offline

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Suggestions: Creating a personalized study curriculum for Web Dev

Posted 10 December 2017 - 12:46 PM

Greetings from Ecuador!

I am currently working on creating my own study curriculum to learn Web Development. I've found articles aplenty on which languages and programs to learn. What I want to know is if I need to learn general computer science subjects (as if I were studying to become a software engineer/computer programmer) first or if I can jump right in to Web Development specific subjects. I have a grasp of basic knowledge in HTML and Visual Basic from what I learned in high school.

Any input here would be greatly appreciated!

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Replies To: Suggestions: Creating a personalized study curriculum for Web Dev

#2 modi123_1   User is offline

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Re: Suggestions: Creating a personalized study curriculum for Web Dev

Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:35 PM

Typically it helps to have some background, but there are others that bypass it.
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#3 jon.kiparsky   User is offline

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Re: Suggestions: Creating a personalized study curriculum for Web Dev

Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:47 PM

I wouldn't say you should learn CS concepts first, but they should not be ignored. Unless you want to lock yourself into the ghetto of front-end development and just do styling fixes, you're going to need to understand how to reason about the evolution of processes, which is the bread and butter of computer science. Web development proper is not that much different from any other sort of programming, it just happens to deal in requests and responses as its primary concepts of interest.

My suggestion would be to start learning a language like python or ruby, and get the fundamentals of it down. For example, if you complete Learn [Python/Ruby] The Hard Way*, that should be plenty for a start. Once you understand a general-purpose programming language, start learning the most popular web framework associated with it - django for python, rails for ruby**. No matter what languages you end up working in, these are good examples of how modern web development is done, and since they're open source it's possible to understand them all the way down if you choose to. You certainly don't want to get stuck on trying to get all of those details in your head, of course, but it's good to know that any questions you have about how django or ruby handles some aspect of processing a request can be answered by inspection of a well-tested and supported code base. In many cases, you will find that there is a tutorial or a lecture that covers exactly the question you're interested in, using one of those frameworks, which makes it even easier (assuming you're comfortable listening to lectures in English, which is for better or worse the default for such things - if not, perhaps there's an opportunity or two there).

There's plenty more curriculum suggestions, including a lot of stuff that gets bundled under "software engineering" (testing, agile methodologies, style, etc) but it sounds like you're mostly interested in the "CS or not?" question. I'm firmly on the "yes, CS" side of that question.

* the python version is available to read free online, not sure about the ruby version.
** I would not advise the .NET languages here, if only because you will find much more community support in python or ruby. You can learn other languages later as you need them - this will be a feature of a career in programming, so be prepared for that.
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