Where to go from here?

theague profile image Kody James Ague ・1 min read

The long and short of this post is, Were you to pay for training in learning front-end development, where would you go?

I currently work in Civil Engineering and I've become tired of the engineering field in general. I've wanted to teach myself front-end development for many years but have not completed this goal. Now I'm at a point where I would like a career change and after chatting with my wife, I want to investigate paid options with structure and requirements. This can be a degree or something else. The key is, career change.

My current situation is that I work 40 hours a week so I need something that can work with that but I need the structure and accountability of a "class". I'd be learning nights and weekends essentially.

Thank you in advance for your thoughts and opinions. All are welcome.


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I've really enjoyed the Coursera programs. They're run by professional institutions, provide a tangible certificate at the end, and are broken into logical units.

They have quizzes and projects as well to provide some practical support.

They're reasonably priced and are setup to work well for "part time" learners.

There are also many "Bootcamp" and private industry colleges that do either full time or part time courses specifically designed to help people like you. I work as an instructor for one in Canada called Lighthouse Labs, but there are many others depending on where you're located.

Finally, many actual colleges will provide options for part time students. If you're looking for something more formal, you can discuss with whatever college or university is closest to you and see what your options there are.


Thanks Brandin,

Is there anything specific at Coursera that you would recommend? There are quite a few courses there to sift through.

I'm south of Seattle so I know I am located favorably as there are a lot of options in this region.

I'll look further into bootcamps as I haven't really looked in that direction.


Something like this is probably a good start if you're coming from nothing, and would provide a good foothold for you to jump off from there: coursera.org/specializations/web-d...

I can attest that this course is really good. It greatly focuses on making accessible websites which something many of us ignore when we start chasing Javascript frameworks. Speaking of Javascript frameworks, egghead.io/ is a great site for learning about the industry tools that are used in modern frontend development, and I highly recommend it.

Thank you both. Even though I feel like I have some basics down I decided to start with this Coursera suggestion, especially because of the accessibility portion. I'd also like to solidify the foundational parts in my brain.


You can check some of the online courses that I have documented here. But first, I have a question to ask if you don't mind. Do you have any prior experience with software development?

I'll probably do CS50 at some point as well, thanks for the link and suggestions.


Hey Kody.

I have tried tutorials and they sometimes work, but usually it takes more time than I would expect.
but sometimes it is hard to relate the concept to my specific goals or situation.

For most of my friends I recommend getting a mentor and combine it with whatever resources my mentor suggests, when they are interested, I tried to be that for them.


Hi Jamie,

I can totally see where a mentor would be a boon, at this point in my efforts I haven't pursued that yet though. I will definitely keep the suggestion in mind for the near future!



I forgot to mention it, but I am self-taught too. What has been your biggest struggle so far?

I think mostly momentum and distractions. I've wanted to do this for a long time, years, I always run into something that takes me off course. I start up, I stop. I've gone the free route mostly so far which sometimes isn't viewed with as much 'value' as something I pay for, which is why i'm considering paying for something, hoping that will be an extra motivator. I've got some other motivations as well that I think will help this time around. ;)

How long have you been studying this way?

too long! Probably a few years at least. Off then on then off again.


You should definitely try a Bootcamp! I can't recommend a specific one myself, but I've seen people go from zero to hired in 6 months after going through a Bootcamp. Look online for the bests and apply!


Hi Carlos, thanks for that feedback. It seems the ones I've found are all in the $10-18k range which is more than I want to spend. Have you seen any less expensive ones?


Oh man, that so expensive! I'd then recommend using something free like theodinproject.com/home to get the basics. Do side projects, as much as you can, for a few months. Then offer your time to work for someone and get experience.

Wow, the odin project looks impressive. Thanks for the suggestion as I had not come across this before!