The gold standard of open online courses, Harvard's CS50, provides one of the best ways for programmers to learn programming as well as the basics of full stack web development. Probably not enough to land a job as a fullstack engineer, but probably enough to start freelancing on smaller projects.
By David Malan and Brian Yu
These courses are quite rigorous, just what you'd expect from Harvard. Each module contains one video lecture supplemented by detailed lecture notes and a project. You'll need the lecture notes as reference when completing the projects, along with supplemental resources from around the web as well, particularly documentation.
We absolutely love the rigor of the projects. The projects are mostly building full-featured clones of well-known websites, like a front-end for Google Search, a Wikipedia-like online encyclopedia, and an eBay-like e-commerce auction site.
Each project assignment includes specs that your deliverable needs to meet in order to receive credit. If submitting your project for credit, you’ll also need to record a 5-minute screencast demonstrating the functionality of your project.
The course is designed to fit a wide range of learners. If you're not already familiar with some of the concepts, the course starts from scratch, but you may need to spend a little extra time, as it covers a lot of ground fairly quickly.
CS50 also includes one of the most robust and active communities around an online course. There are tens of thousands of active members on the Discord, and if you have a question, you typically don't have to wait long to get a solid answer.
You won’t be eligible for a certificate until you complete the entire path, and you must receive 70% on all projects.
Note: the Web Programming course materials were created in 2020. While the foundations haven't changed, the course doesn't teach some of the latest features of React. So you'll want to supplement with at least some additional review of each technology's documentation.
The best self-paced full stack program money can buy. It's expensive, but well worth the cost for the quality of instruction and the quality of feedback on your work. The emphasis on practice exercises and real-world hands-on projects are standout features.
By Various Authors
Tremendous free curriculum for learning the foundations of fullstack software development, from one of the top-rated coding bootcamps. Not as seamless an experience as our other recommendations, and lacks assessments and feedback on your work, but it's an excellent option.
Full Stack Open
By Various Authors
An impressive free, text-based curriculum developed in partnership with tech companies, that offers feedback on coding exercises and certificates of completion.
By Various Authors
Solid hands-on learning option for the core concepts of fullstack development. Also a good option for supplemental practice or knowledge checks. Probably not enough to land a job as a fullstack engineer, but probably enough to start freelancing on smaller projects.
Our course reviews are conducted by a team of technical professionals, course developers, and lifelong learners.
The lead of this project, Brian Green, has worked in developer education since 2009. He built the content development teams at Pluralsight and Udacity, implementing quality standards and tutorials to improve course quality and working with hundreds of authors to create courseware. Most recently, he built the product team at App Academy. As of writing, he estimates he has spent nearly a year of his life taking or reviewing online courses, on topics ranging from Web Development, Networking, Server Administration, DevOps, Cybersecurity, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence.
We reviewed this course using the following criteria: