Having mastered static websites, we will start to cover HTTP, which is the protocol that powers the web. We will look at making AJAX requests and start consuming external APIs to add rich content to our sites.
We will spend a good amount of time learning how to use relational databases, SQL and Postgres. You will learn how to query databases, normalise your data, perform joins and ensure optimal indices.
To round off the course, we will return to the front end and start using React and Redux, to create rich web interfaces, alongside good practices to ensure our code is maintainable and performant.
Pair Programming will get you used to working with others, much like you would in a real job. Working with a partner will also encourage you to discuss and explain your code and working. This experience will be absolutely crucial for the job inteviews following the course and we prefer to start practising early. Most importantly you and your partner will support each other on your journey - having two pairs of eyes will make it much easier to spot an out of place comma or a misspelled variable name. Pair programming is also an opportunity to learn from each other and discover new ways to solve problems.
Test Driven Development helps you to focus on code structure and quality from the very beginning. Writing tests is a way of ensuring our code does what it is supposed to, and encourages us to structure it in small, logical pieces. Having tests in place will make it much easier for you to make changes to your code with a high degree of confidence you have not broken anything along the way.
In terms of content, Constructor Labs most impressed me with the incorporation of the latest industry trends. The curriculum is "in touch" with the industry and is focussed on teaching the most sought after technologies and development methods - no short-cuts or quick fixes. This "real" industry touch is really inspiring as a student, as you have a great insight into what to expect from the industry when you graduate and more importantly you feel equipped for the challenge.
We pride ourselves on having the best instructors in the business. You will be taught only by instructors who have proven themselves both as accomplished developers and capable teachers. Oliver and Dmitri have over 25 years experience between them so you can be confident you are learning from the best.
Prior to joining Constructor Labs, Oliver headed up fron end architecture at Ticketmaster and worked as a lead developer for a number of agencies. During his time at Ticketmaster, Oliver was responsible for setting up their internship programme that helped a large number of junior developers get thir first role in the industry. He has also been volunteering as a mentor at Codebar for over three and a half years. There are few folks more able and committed to the success of junior developers than Oliver.
Rather than focus on long theoretical lectures, we prefer to get stuck in and start writing code as soon as possible. As the course progresses, we will start to explore topics in greater depth, enabling you to build more elegant solutions to ever greater challenges.
We introduce each new topic with a brief workshop, where we explain how it works, provide a few examples and write some code together. After that we will provide you with exercises to reinforce your understanding and challenge you to solve some trickier problems with your new skills. Every few topics we will throw in a small project for you to build. The purpose of this is to unify everything you have learned so far and start thinking about apps as a whole rather than separate functions. The projects are also an opportunity for you to flex your creative muscles - not only will you be able to practise your design skills, but you will also be able to start using any technologies that we have not taught you. In many ways, we want this experience to be representative of the real world where you will get agile stories to implement and the exact implementation design will be up to you.
Each project will be followed by a group code review. This will be a chance for all the students to compare their approaches and learn from each other.
The great thing about Constructor Labs is that it makes coding accessible for anyone regardless of background if you enjoy problem solving and have a keen interest in learning to code. It's been intense and challenging but I've learnt more in the last 10 weeks than I did in the 10 months leading up to it when I was teaching myself to code.
Every week we have guest speakers who are either experienced engineers or represent some of the companies looking to hire our graduates. They provide the perfect opportunity to learn more about what they do, how they work and most importantly what they look for in new joiners. This experience will help you understand more about the work of a software developer and position yourself as an ideal candidate.
Most companies we speak are not interested in certificates, they want applicants with skills. Every weekend the students at Constructor Labs build a project using the skills they have learned. At the end of course we encourage students to pick out 3 or 4 favourite projects to create a portfolio of their best work. This will give hiring companies an excellent insight into your ability and proof of your skills.
As part of the course you will work on a group project. As the grand finale to the course we will hold a demo day where you will get to present your group project to our many hiring partners. This will provide with a first opportunity to make an impression with potential employers and start securing interviews
During the final week of the course we will provide you with plenty of information about how to best look for work, how to present your portfolio and how to prepare for interviews. We also provide coaching session with one of London's top recruitment consultants who will help you communicate your strengths. You can see some of our application techniques at: How to get your first software developer job.
On joining, I was keen to (1) be able to build my own applications front and back (2) learn the 'best' latest technologies and (3) enable me to switch into software engineering as a career change. On all three counts this course has delivered (I've already been offered a job!). So super happy!