Seven Free Resources You Need to Learn Javascript

Last time I wrote about learning code, I talked at length about what the best coding language to learn for you was, going through the pros and cons of a few languages, and giving use cases of each one. Without delving into too many spoilers—you should read the piece for all of the insights—Javascript was mentioned heavily.

Javascript has been really big, especially because of the evolution of the MEAN stack, which has allowed for Javascript to control how users view your site’s information (Angular), how you host your site (Node), how your site communicates information (Express) and how it stores it (Mongo). It’s become really popular with startups—in fact as you can see from CB Insights, 81% of billion-dollar startups use Javascript in their technology. It is the top coding language used by successful startups.

Learn Javascript with code(love)

It’s a language that can get you hired, and help you build great new ventures.

I’ve recently been really big on wanting to learn Javascript, so I’ve unleashed these resources. They’re a diverse group, suited to all types of people who want to learn Javascript in different ways.

One cautionary note: as useful as Javascript can be, it may not be the best first programming language to learn. It has a lot of little traps in it that can trip even veteran programmers. If you are an absolute beginner, you may want to check out some more general resources oriented around other languages rather than trying to learn Javascript, such as these.

1- Codecadamy Javascript Track (type: interactive, level: beginner)

What’s not to like about learning by doing? By following the Javascript track of Codecadamy’s interactive courses, you can get the basics of Javascript by working out how to create functions, and build things with it. It’s a great sandbox to learn in—in fact, it was how I first picked up coding.

2-Eloquent Javascript (Type: book, level: beginner)

Still can’t get over learning through books? I can’t blame you. I was never the biggest fan of school, but there is something comforting about having a lot of pages devoted to something.

Eloquent Javascript is a free book that has been converted into HTML format for easy reading. It goes through everything you need to learn Javascript from beginning to end. It’s quite well-written, and has a lot of relevant examples and images to break the text up—it’s a book that really gets at you and challenges you to learn Javascript.

3-LearnJS (type: interactive, level: intermediate)

More learning by doing. I really like resources like this that get at you and challenge you to do stuff. In this case, LearnJS features interactive modules where you are challenged to finish incomplete code so that it matches a desired output. In doing so, you can learn how to use Javascript to do what you want it to do.

4-Scotch.io (type: blog, level: advanced)

I picked up on Scotch.io when I was looking for resources on how to build single-page web applications. The place is a hive of how-tos and resources on how to build with Javascript and its frameworks.

5-Egghead.io (type: video, level: advanced)

I’ve been following the Egghead video series on Angular to learn the framework: they’ve been a breath of fresh air for my learning. Angular.JS is a Javascript framework that allows you to control a lot of what a website visitor would see, from filtering information, to allowing buttons to toggle settings on and off. It’s the framework I’ve been focused on learning. Having so much content organized about it in a coherent and sequential fashion warms my heart—and it will warm yours as well.

6-JSFiddle (type: sandbox, level: beginner)

Whenever you feel the need to play around to learn Javascript, JSFiddle is the easiest way. Plug your code into the module, and watch it come to life with no limits!  I use it to test what some websites will look and feel like without the need of hosting and uploading changes. It’s a great experimental space to see what your code would look like live.

7-Plunker (type: sandbox, level: intermediate)

Similar to JSFiddle, except now you can manage separate pages, which has made it really useful for testing more complex frameworks for Javascript such as Angular.JS. My go-to learning tool these days as I combine that with Egghead for maximum learning.

There you go. The choice is in your hands to build something great now with Javascript. These resources will help along the way.

If you want more resources to learn, check out our other learning lists!

 

The author

Roger is an entrepreneur who has co-founded a social network entitled ThoughtBasin that looks to connect students looking to make a difference with organizations looking for difference makers. This experience has given him some setbacks, but also some priceless insights. He is deferring admission from the law school of University of Toronto to pursue his dream of creating impact through entrepreneurship, and he is constantly looking to learn and create, and to do more. He contributes to social entrepreneurship projects with his fellow Global Shapers, coordinates a volunteer tutoring site, and on his off time he unwinds by reading, writing, and dancing---sometimes, all at the same time. Follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Rogerh1991.

  • Roger Huang

    What do you think about learning Javascript? Are you trying to right now?

  • Jeremy Stewart

    I’m learning JavaScript and the MEAN stack now, these are great resources!

    Thanks!

    • Roger Huang

      Glad it could help 🙂

  • Diego Ballona

    “Javascript the Right Way” is pretty cool too: http://jstherightway.org/