5 Essential Resources for Junior Developers to Improve Their Coding Skills
5 min read
As a budding junior developer finishing up his last semester of college, it would be a lie to say that I didn't have a lot of help along the way with learning web and app development. In addition to my knowledgeable professors, I supported my learning with various content creators over the past couple of years. This list is by no means exhaustive or in any particular order but these are some (free) resources and creators that I could not have done without.
I hope some of these can help you as well!
It would be a missed opportunity not to include freeCodeCamp in a blog post about valuable resources for learning web development. They offer a wealth of content in various formats, all completely free of charge. Their website provides a comprehensive web developer boot camp curriculum, including exercises, readings, and projects. Additionally, they have a YouTube channel with a wide range of open-source tutorials on various programming topics, catering to all skill levels. They even had a podcast, which though currently on hiatus, has a wealth of interviews and learning-to-program content in its archives.
Brad, the workhorse behind the Traversy Media YouTube channel, is a treasure to all developers out there. Brad produces excellent crash courses and project tutorials with a no bs approach. He teaches you what you need to know and he does so very clearly and doesn't overcomplicate his teaching with tech buzzwords or jargon.
Traversy Media is often the first channel I go to when I want a high-level overview of a piece of technology. I can't recommend a better first introduction to a topic other than Brad. The only shortcoming of this channel I can think of is that he doesn't go into depth about topics. This is why I primarily use him as a jumping-off point rather than a one-stop shop.
If you need a high-level crash course on something then please check out Traversy Media, you won't be disappointed.
The Net Ninja
Similar to Traversy Media, Shaun from Net Ninja YouTube Channel also produces tutorial videos on a wide range of web and app development topics. Shaun does however have a slightly different formula for his content. The biggest difference is how their videos are delivered, while Traversy Media focuses more on a large "crash course" style video, Shaun prefers to build a playlist about a piece of technology and builds a project with you from the ground up. This leads to his videos covering more detail and answering more of the "why?" questions that a developer may have about something. I love the playlist style of tutorial coding because it makes it much simpler to come back to later. It's very easy to see what episode you left off at rather than scrubbing through one longer crash course tutorial. Also, if you only require a small bit of information for your project, it's incredibly easy to filter out which episode you'll find that content in with his labelled episodes. I often use both Traversy Media and Net Ninja in tandem to truly understand something; I watch along with Brad for a high-level overview, then after I'll code along with Shaun with his easy-to-digest tutorial episodes.
Shauna also delivers his content with a contagious enthusiasm that helps you to keep coming back to learn.
Chris, from the CodeWithChris (CWC) YouTube channel, is an amazing technology educator. I'm sad I only recently found out about this guy during my last semester while I was taking my iOS development course. Chris focuses on educating junior iOS developers. He can take you from zero-to-full-stack iOS developer in a relatively short time and does so both charismatically and enthusiastically. It just really feels good to learn from the guy.
My experience with CWC may be rose-tinted because I found him when I knew zero about SWift iOS development; a more experienced iOS developer may not find his channel to be fruitful at all. I just wish his channel covered more platforms and topics because the pacing and clarity of his videos when you are a true beginner are unmatched. Those are the only two cons I can think of about CWC.
If you're interested in dipping your toes in iOS development then I highly recommend you begin that journey with Chris.
Be A Better Dev
Be A Better Dev's YouTube channel, hosted by Daniel, is a valuable source of information on Amazon Web Services (AWS). As a senior software engineer at Amazon with extensive experience using AWS, Daniel creates tutorial videos in his free time. I recently discovered the channel while working on my final semester project, which involves using AWS as our backend cloud service. Daniel's videos have been instrumental in helping us understand AWS and how to apply it to our project.
Be A Better Dev is a must-watch for any backend developer or anyone with a general interest in cloud service backends.
I'm a junior web and app developer finishing my final semester of college. To get me this far I've relied on not only the support of my teachers and peers but also various content creators. Here are the five content creators that first came to my mind when I began writing this blog post:
freeCodeCamp (Boot camp curriculum, YouTube tutorials, podcast, forum group)
Traversy Media (YouTube crash course tutorials on various web and app development technologies)
Net Ninja (Playlist style YouTube tutorials on various web and app development technologies)
CodeWithChris (Focused iOS development tutorials for the new iOS developer)
Be A Better Dev (Focused AWS tutorials for backend developers of various expertise)
If you are in a similar position as me, or, you have a general interest in learning to program, then I hope you can find some value from these creators as well.