What is Web Development?
Web development is the building and maintenance of websites; It’s the work that goes on behind the scenes to make a website look great, work fast, and perform well with a seamless user experience.
Web developers, or ‘devs’, do this by using a variety of coding languages. The language they use depends on the types of tasks they previously performed and the platform on which they work.
Web development skills are in high demand around the world and are also well paid – making development a great career option. This is one of the most accessible higher paying fields because you don’t need a traditional university degree to qualify.
The web design and development field is generally broken down into front-end (user-facing side) and back-end (server side). Let’s dive into the details.
Comparing Front-End and Back-End Development
What you see and what you use, such as the visual aspects of the website, drop-down menus and text, are all put together by front-end developers, who write a series of programs to bind and arrange elements, make them look good and add interactivity. This program is run through a browser.
The backend developer designs what goes on behind the scenes. This is where the data is stored, and without this data, there would be no frontend. The web backend consists of the server that hosts the website, the applications to run it, and a database to hold the data.
Backend developers use computer programs to ensure that servers, applications, and databases run smoothly together. This type of developer needs to analyze what the company needs and provide an efficient programming solution. To do all this awesome stuff, they use multiple server-side languages, such as PHP, Ruby, Python, and Java.
What about Full-Stack Development?
If Frontend and Backend development interests you, you may consider becoming a Full Stack Developer.
The full-stacker handles both the front-end and the back-end, and it is necessary to know how the web works at all levels, to determine how the client and server sides will relate. Naturally, working to this level of expertise will take longer, as there is still much to learn.
Start Web Development
All of this may sound daunting at first, but you don’t need to know all of it at once. You will develop your knowledge progressively. And everything will start clicking.
The good news is, learning to be a developer is accessible and affordable. This is especially true with OpenClassrooms. Emily Reese, Web Developer and Guru at OpenClassrooms explains,
No matter what aspect of web development appeals to you, we have a program that can help you achieve your goals.
Whatever your background, you can study web development. Emily told us,
In college, I studied art history and architecture and then decided to become a developer while I was working at Kickstarter because I saw how the web can complement creativity in art. The same is true of any field.
Being a web professional allows you to participate absolutely in any field, because the web has a universal presence in our professional life. You can become a web developer and specialize in everything from the art world to the automotive industry.
The first step is to decide which aspect of web development interests you and then start with one programming language.
For example, if you’re interested in a front end, you could start by learning some HTML and CSS, then start working on a project as soon as you’re comfortable with the basics. Our Web Developer Program is perfect for this route. But others might suit you too.
It also helps to join discussion groups or other web developer communities, so you can solve problems, discuss ideas, and get inspired. That’s why you become a part of the OpenClassrooms community when you register for the program on the site.
There are many online resources for learning all aspects of web programming. OpenClassrooms has a variety of free online courses to get you started, and accredited programs you can also take if you decide that this is the career for you.