How to find and choose the best online web design courses 2017?
In the past decade, websites have morphed into essential places that are able to showcase businesses or sell products (physical or virtual). A host of web design courses on the internet enables you to understand the nuances of design and allow you to create websites for your use or for other clients as a profession.
In this post we will cover the best web design courses online from a range of providers, and also show you were it is best to advance essential web development skills (Java, PHP) to complement your ability to work professionally.
When selecting a suitable elearning platform to start such a course, ensure that you go through this short checklist so that you are guaranteed a fruitful learning experience.
- Clear, comprehensive instructions (textual/verbal)
- Comprehensive syllabus
- Practical exercises and access to tools – avoid courses that just go over theory
- Knowledgeable & experienced instructor
Web Design Courses – The Best Online Providers 2017
Based on the criteria above, if any course/platform tries to market itself as the course that makes you an expert in 5 (or a ridiculously short time) hours, you may give that a complete miss. It is bound to be as useful as someone trying to read and memorize a phonebook in that much time. While the total amount of content may be stated as 5 hours for specific topics, the overall time spent including practicing and getting experience will of course exceed it.
- Code School
- Code Avengers
- W3 Schools
- Stack Overflow
- Khan Academy
1. Udemy Web Designing Courses
About – Udemy is an online learning platform with numerous courses available for subjects ranging from web design, computing or IT to business, finance or building an actual robot!
Overview – Anyone with access to a webcam and microphone can design these courses, hence, the quality of courses available on Udemy vary to a large degree. However, this also opens up an avenue for talented developers and coders who have years of experience to impart valuable knowledge to students.
Review – Udemy is a great platform to kick-start or to brush up on web design and development. Even though Udemy provides numerous web design courses to choose from, the top-rated courses by veterans such as Rob Percival and Colt Steele do stand out from the crowd with quality material and comprehensive instructions for people of both beginner and intermediate skill levels.
Price: Ranges from $50 – $200. However, frequent sales and promotions bring down prices quite often to within $15-50.
2. Code School
What it is – Another popular option among people looking for online courses in the web design area. Code School offers a well-implemented solution for e-learning with a combination of video tutorials and ‘challenges,’ that require students to fulfill certain actions before being allowed to proceed further down the course.
Review – Code School is a brilliant option for both beginners and intermediates since their online web design courses start at the very basic level, which can be skipped by students who are at an intermediate skill level already.
Price: One of the cheapest premium courses available, priced at $7/month for full access to the website.
3. Udacity Web Design
About – Working on a completely different approach than its competition, Udacity is based on the idea that instructions and courses should be created by future/prospective employers. The idea behind this is that employers know the exact knowledge they look for in an employee, hence, their online web design courses are tailored for people who are seeking jobs and considering making web development their profession.
Overview – Courses on Udacity are part of their nanodegree programs, which have a prominent standing within the hiring community. Moreover, the web development courses on Udacity are co-created by industry giants, namely – AT&T, Google, GitHub, and HackReactor. However, these courses, especially the nanodegree programs are not aimed at beginners. Udacity instructors expect their students to possess working knowledge of computer science and web development before starting the course.
Verdict – Consequently, Udacity is the platform of choice for advancing your career or gaining advanced knowledge about web development after you have already gained considerable knowledge in the subject. The only intermediate web development courses available on Udacity are the Front-End Developer Nanodegree and the Full-Stack Web Developer Nanodegree.
Price: The nanodegree program costs $199/month, while the nanodegree plus program, which offers a full refund if you aren’t hired within 6 months of completion of the course, is priced at a hefty $299/month.
4. Coursera Web Design Courses
About – Coursera offers the closest online experience to a real college education, partly because the majority of the courses on this platform are designed by colleges themselves. It features an impressive number of courses in every field, which have instructors with an astounding amount of teaching experience in addition to doctorate’s or a master’s degree in their respective fields.
Overview – Even the course structure is reminiscent of a college education, web development is divided into sections that need to be purchased separately, like semesters in college. At the end of each section, a comprehensive quiz and project will evaluate the knowledge you have gathered from your studies. Moreover, at the end of the course, you have to complete a Capstone project (usually a ground-up website or web app), which will display your ability to put theory into practical use.
At the end of a course, you are awarded a certificate that verifies your capstone project completion in addition to the course content that you have learned.
Review – Two of the most popular courses on web design and development available on Coursera are conducted by the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and the University of London. These courses are aimed at beginners who want to gain considerable theoretical knowledge in addition to practical knowledge. However, if you prefer more hands-on knowledge, other platforms might be a better fit for you.
Price: Under $100 – varies depending on the course you wish to pursue.
5. Lynda Web Design Classes
About – Lynda is a popular e-learning platform and has been bought by LinkedIn recently. It deviates from the path taken by other learning platforms by allowing you to pace and structure your courses as you need. Web development, for example, is split into tiny segments; you are allowed to mix and match the exact technologies or skills you wish to develop and pursue.
Overview – Average web development course sizes on Lynda are around 2-3 hours since they deal with very specific niches. Ranging from basic web design courses like introductory HTML to advanced development courses such as setting up a working PHP environment, you are bound to encounter any specific knowledge you may be searching for, one way or another.
Summary – However, this system does have its drawbacks – beginners will not know what courses are important and useful and this is where pre-structured courses have an advantage over Lynda’s course style. On the other hand, if your aim is to specialize in a specific niche in the web development domain, Lynda will definitely provide a suitable course for you to pursue. Their most popular courses are: Web Career Clinic and the HTML Essential Training.
Price: The basic plan without project files, quizzes, and code practice is priced at $19.99/month and the premium plan with all features costs $29.99/month.
6. Treehouse Web Design
What it is – Team Treehouse offers online web design courses in a novel and well-curated format, arranging course content in a way that will allow you to gain knowledge without having to worry whether you are missing out on any important parts of web development.
Summary – Moreover, this style of online courses is a great way for even beginners to garner enough web development knowledge to build websites from the ground up if they choose. It is a costlier option than other platforms; however, if you are searching for a one-stop solution to teach you everything you need about web design, it will be worth the investment.
Price: Each course is priced at $199/month.
7. Code Avengers
What it is – Learning and gaining knowledge while staring at a computer screen might get tedious after the first few hours, keeping this in mind, Code Avengers have devised a completely interactive method of teaching people how to code.
Overview – Each technology is separated into ‘paths’ and these paths comprise of multiple courses, exercises, quizzes and video tutorials. Instead of simply watching a video of someone performing an action or writing code, students are given instructions and asked to write simple code from the get-go. The basic tasks are as simple as getting your name printed on the webpage. However, the difficulty of these exercises increases as you progress through your chosen track, in this case, the web design track.
Conclusion – The HTML/CSS web design course starts off with basic HTML exercises and progresses into advanced CSS animations and styling. Hence, Code Avengers is one of the best platforms for those who want to gain intermediate level knowledge, but have already tried and failed to complete traditional video lectures. Another popular course that is recommended after completing the HTML/CSS track is the Web Dev course.
Price: Unlimited access to all the tracks is provided with membership, costing $29/month.
8. Tuts+ by Envato
About – Tuts+ is similar to the course structure offered by Lynda, with small courses, albeit with both paid and free options, unlike Lynda. However, this style of courseware is not suitable for absolute beginners and is aimed at intermediate level developers who are clear with what they need to learn.
Features – Featuring a variety of web development courses from topics as simple as installing a WordPress theme or understanding basic web design to intermediate courses such as crafting responsive portfolio pages with fluid animations using a combination of HTML5 and CSS3, Tuts+ makes sure that they cover almost all aspects of web design in short online courses.
Price: Varies by each course (both free and paid available).
Other Online Courses To Learn Web Design
9. SkillShare (online learning platform inkluding web design classes)
11. Codecademy (free web design/development courses)
12. W3 Schools (free HTML/CSS framework and resource)
13. CSS Tricks (Resources to effectively use CSS)
14. Stack Overflow (online community for developers)
15. Khan Academy (Expert courses and resources)
Best Web Design Courses Online 2017 – Review Summary
Web designing has become a handy tool for anyone planning to conduct business online, with a bare minimum level of knowledge an absolute necessity nowadays. Although there are multitudes of courses available online, make sure you identify what you wish to study and what format will result in the most productivity from your side.
Recommendation – Keeping the aforementioned factors in mind, I would recommend the Code School platform for beginners looking for a basic understanding of web technologies and the Udacity Nanodegree program for those wishing to take intermediate knowledge to the advanced level. Both Coursera and Udemy do have a wide range of courses available that deliver a very good understanding of web design techniques. They combine well with free training platforms such as Codecademy or resources such as CSS Tricks.
What are the best web design courses (online) 2017 in your experience? Please share your opinion in the comments below.
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