Starting Resources for JavaScript Beginners

JavaScript has helped keep the internet interactive since the early days of web browsers. There are thousands of resources available to help you if you want to get better at this essential programming language. It can be difficult to figure out where to start! Below are a few tutorials, books, and classes that can help you learn more about JavaScript as it is used in modern web design.

Beginner-Friendly Resources

WebsiteSetup’s JavaScript Cheat Sheet

This JavaScript Cheat Sheet is a great resource for both new and experienced coders. A quick reference guide helps you reinforce what you are learning and saves you time when reviewing core concepts. Download the PDF and keep it with you while you code!

JavaScript for Cats

‘JavaScript For Cats’ is the oldest resource on this list but, with only a few small exceptions, it remains a fun, brisk look at the basics of JavaScript every beginning web designer should learn.

JavaScript has three ways of declaring variables! Older forms of JavaScript would use var exclusively:var myApples = 4;. Newer versions of JavaScript use let for most variables and const for constants: let myApples = 4; and const serverSerialNumber = 55555;. Don’t worry if this is a bit beyond your current understanding of Javascript! For now, just remember that you may see both versions depending on how old the code you’re reading is.

Comprehensive Courses

Khan Academy

Khan Academy is an online learning resource dedicated to providing teaching and education resources to the world. The site offers a free, comprehensive introduction to programming centered on JavaScript. This introductory module provides an overview of both JavaScript syntax and fundamental programming concepts. If you enjoy these lessons, consider working your way through the entire computer programming curriculum!

Free Code Camp

Free Code Camp provides a comprehensive, project-based curriculum that can take you from zero experience to a professional web design job. Anyone can use the site’s comprehensive tutorials. After students have completed some of the site’s certifications, they are invited to gain experience and build a portfolio by designing websites for various nonprofit organizations.

The curriculum covers every level of JavaScript. At higher levels, computer science science is taught using JavaScript. Advanced students study the popular React library (for design) and D3 (for data visualization). If your ultimate goal is to learn the new industry standard of JavaScript, Free Code Camp has everything you need!

Computer Science with JavaScript

Eloquent Javascript

Eloquent Javascript is dense, but rewarding. The book quickly covers basic syntax before shifting focus to computer science fundamentals. Along the way, you’ll learn a bit about regular expressions (regex) and build your own miniature programming language. The book ends with a look at back end, server side JavaScript development with Node.js.

Intermediate Skill Builders

You Don’t Know JavaScript

There’s always more to learn! If you feel comfortable with the basic JavaScript, check out Kyle Simpson’s seven book series. Each book is an in-depth look at specific aspects of JavaScript’s language architecture.

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