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Web Developer, Web Design Training & Webmaster Training Guide:
What’s the right fit for you in developing your skills?

1) Web Dev & Webmaster Training Guide, by Eric Gondwe, JesusWorkMinistry.com

What’s the right fit of web developer training for you in developing your skills? It all depends on factors such as:
1) Time you can afford to set aside,
2) Finances to afford a training type of your choice,
3) What type of training is most fitting for your web dev area and scope,
4) Your web dev career goals -to be self employed & later hire employees or to be an employee.

If your web dev caree goals are to work as an employee, or starting off that way, then I do recommend formal training. This is because most employers will take formal training credentials into account. An exception can be if you have well established proof of your web development skills and experience, such as your programing or websites you’ve built and their level of success.

If your dev career goals are flexible then you also have flexible training options. Some learn better in a classroom setting, others through online courses, while others learn better on the “streets” - self-taught in an informal way with no formal papers. One of our biggest example of a street smart guy is Bill Gates, who dropped out of Harvard University. A dropout with a supper street-smart brain ended up with an IT empire!

There are a lot of resources out there that are worthwhile for web dev career training or career development. One of them is this website. I organized the major webmaster principles and tools needed into one easy to navigate site. It was a blessing to acquire the name WebDevelopmentCareer.com. It’s the right name for the right cause: to share principles and tools with people working in or venturing in the web development career environment.

The principles you need in web dev are the same whether your interest in using web tech opportunities is for Christian or business purposes. My emphasis is on strategy: You don’t need to know all the web dev principles, programming, or use all the web dev tools, to succeed in your web development career. Strategy (quality), not quantity is the key. Next to strategy is endless learning to navigate and master the ever changing web dev environment.

There is an ocean of resources out there that you can find using search engines like Google.com. These resources include ebooks, free subscription newsletters, audio, videos (online & offline), and other free online tutorials like at w3schools.com and learnthat.com (where you can learn many web dev and other tech principles just by using the search query to find your interest (e.g. typing in Dreamweaver). For instance I was able to locate through a search query a whole list of tech tutorials on learnthat.com.

There are also online tutorials and courses that can be effective in learning stage by stage if you’re self-disciplined. Some are email classes, others are structured online courses/tutorials, while others are downloads and media that can be mailed such as text documents, books, CDs and DVDs. Some webmaster career training sites like w3schools.com offer formal certification. An exam fee is required to take the certificate exam. Having formal papers can be helpful to those seeking to be employed by companies. Some have payable resources and formal training programs. One I like is Lynda.com.

Below are other articles helpful in understanding career training and development as a webmaster/web developer.

2. What Training Do You Need to Be a Webmaster? by Education-Portal.com

The main duties of a webmaster are to ensure a website is easy to navigate and can be accessed by people using different operating systems and Web browsers. A webmaster must stay abreast with technology as it advances. He or she must have skills in areas such as hypertext markup language (HTML), cascading style sheets (CSS) and extensible markup language (XML). Although the skills can be learned from a formal training program, many webmasters learn skills from internet programs.

Training Needed to Become a Webmaster
Many webmasters are self-taught. On the Internet, websites such as HTML Dog ( www.htmldog.com) and w3schools.com provide all the training a webmaster needs to perform his or her duties. At w3schools.com, tutorials in every aspect of Web design are taught free of charge. The site is recommended by many high schools and universities around the globe for its tutorials.

Aspiring webmasters can earn a certificate through w3schools.com. Students study different modules, and take quizzes on the website free of charge. A fee is required to take the certificate exam. A certificate provides documented knowledge, which may be helpful when seeking employment as a webmaster.

Formal Education
For aspiring webmasters that don't wish to take the time to learn needed skills online, formal education is available at vocational schools and 2-year universities. A Webmaster Certification program introduces the student to Web authoring, teaching skills in Extensible Hypertext Markup Language (XHTML), Web design, accessibility and cascading style sheets (CSS).

Coursework includes an introduction to Web authoring tools, such as Dreamweaver or Front Page. Students are introduced to programming languages, such as PHP Hypertext Preprocessor (PHP), application service provider (ASP) and common gateway interface (CGI).
Associate of Applied Business in Web Development

Webmasters wishing to develop greater skills can earn an associate's degree in Web development through 2-year colleges and technical schools. Students are introduced to e-commerce, Visual Basic, databases and web development. Local area networks, systems development and web database integration are studied. Coursework also includes electives in areas such as sociology, physical education and science.

Related articles to Webmaster Training
    A. Webmaster - CIW Certificate Programs
      For business professionals, or anyone who is interested in Internet technology, a Webmaster-CIW Certificate Program will provide the skills necessary to open many doors in employment or career advancement. There are many areas of specialization, so every graduate can find the niche that best fits their interests and skills.

    B. Master Certified Internet Webmaster in Design (MCIWD): Job Info and Requirements for Becoming a MCIWD
      Design software skills and a desire for career advancement are needed to be a Master Certified Internet Webmaster in Design (MCIWD). Webmaster Designers are hired for their technical and creative expertise in website construction. An MCIWD may also be interested in becoming a master certified Internet website manager or a network communications analyst.

3. Web Developer Training - Career Opportunities, by Learn4Good.com

What Web Development involves:
Web Developers are responsible for the backend database design and programming of websites in order to customize web pages for users and to make the web pages work. Web Developers are often referred to Web Masters or Web Engineers. They are often confused with Web Designers who are responsible for the graphics and animations involved in a website.

Web Developers or Software Developers are adept in programming languages such as PHP, Java Script, Java, Perl and ASP, but they need to be flexible and have the ability to learn new languages quickly in order to stay competitive in this ever changing industry.

Education - How to become a Web Developer:
A degree in computer science is essential in today’s competitive workplace to enter into the world of Web Development. All computer science degrees teach the fundamentals of web development including Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), Web Page Design, Web Page Forms, JavaScript, Database Administration and Multimedia Web Pages. Many focus also on Content development, Communications and Marketing. It is essential to learn the fundamentals of programming and how to learn languages rather than putting all your efforts into one language that may be obsolete by the time you graduate.

For IT technicians who have some on the job training, and want a formal certification for there skills, they can study to become a CIW Enterprise Developer. This Course covers developing Web enabled applications and implementing e-business solutions. Candidates are expected to have advanced skills in database management, distributed object computing, scripting and programming languages and language theory as a prerequisite.

Career Opportunities:
Web Developers can work in just about any industry from Insurance and finance to Government and Non profit Organizations. There are different types of websites e.g. informative, entertaining, communicative or commercial, each requiring different skills. Ecommerce websites with frequent visitors require advanced security systems to protect their customer’s details while informative websites require regular updates.

When applying for jobs as a web developer, it is a good idea to have an online profile, detailing your skills with links to your work. This way you can display your completed work to potential employers. If you start out by designing websites for your friends or family put your contact details on each page so even if you don’t get paid you may possibly get some business.

Search Web Developer Jobs currently posted on our jobsite (Learn4Good.com),  to have an idea of the type of jobs in this career.

4. When training doesn't work, by Clive Shepherd, at Fastrak-Consulting.co.uk

Could it be that the world's moving too fast for training? Your job, perhaps even your career, changes every year or so. The products and services that your organization delivers change monthly. The whole basis of the industry in which you work may be challenged every few years. There's so much to know and so little time to learn it.

Maybe the answer is not training, certainly as we know it, but top quality information and performance support materials, accessible on demand, when required, electronically...

The only constant is change
There was a time, or so we're always told, when life was more sedate. When you left school or college, you would learn your trade safe in the knowledge that your skills would serve you for a lifetime of stable employment, in an organization whose products and services changed moderately only every decade or so. Even the trains ran on time (on second thoughts, that's probably overstating it).

Whether this was ever true, it certainly isn't now, as we can all attest. If we're employed at all, rather than being self-employed, on contract or just resting, then we know the situation can change at any time. If we don't keep up-to-the-minute with our chosen field then we soon become worthless.

At the same time, products and services are constantly being adapted to meet ever-changing customer needs, competitive pressures and market opportunities. At companies like Cisco, new products are launched every week. To compound the pressures upon us, we're bombarded with information by post, email and mobile phone, some of it critical, most of it superfluous.

5.  No formal training or education, by forum participants at themeforest.net

Eldian says:
Any author here started with no formal training or education or got their career started in a different field?

I ask because I went to school for something unrelated to web design/web development but always find myself intrigued with it.

Headset says:
My school was (and still is) the web :), I studied Political Sciences (in formal education).

Mlando says:
I found when hiring/interviewing, that candidates with formal education offer a solid foundation in design theory and concepts. Most candidates out of school have base knowledge of the tools but lack practical experience in production/real world scenarios. I would say that a combination of both self learning and formal education would be beneficial.

Learning on your own can give you the knowledge you need to work in this field as long as you take the time to figure out what is the right way and learn from quality sources. There are many paths to a goal and all have their benefits. Learning is something you will have to do on a continual basis in this field so regardless how you get there you will have to keep your chops-up will constant exploration.

DigitalReverie says:
Just because you’re self-taught doesn’t mean you don’t have an education.

Codyrobert says:
I studied journalism & international relations.

Only one person I’ve worked with in the last 7 years has gone to school and graduated with a degree related to what they do, Advertising Design. I’ve worked with a former relator that does web design, and a high school dropout who was previously an airplane salesman.

The people that did have university experience, didn’t train in anything related to what they currently do.

Eight7Teen says:
Hmm, I couldn’t design my way out of a wet paper bag (i.e. poor at graphical skills)… But I can code (program) with the best of ‘em… and my only teacher was (and still is) Google (in finding needed info).

I’ve actually had several job offers from reputable companies, but their salaries don’t even come close to what i’m making by freelancing.

Adam_robinson says:
if you have a killer portfolio (designs, coding or whatever the field) it doesn’t matter if you have formal education or not. Proof is in the pudding… alot of the guys/girls who graduated from my couse in New Media couldnt build/design a web site if their life depended on it. I have a formal education but to be honest 90% of my web knowledge is self taught.

Its definitely true about some courses being out of date when it comes to web standards/techniques. I went to study at Sydney University for a year in 2007-2008 and took a web design module there and the lecturer used tables for layout for gods sake. Lets just say i passed that module fairly easily.

6.  Web Development / College, by forum participants at Webmasterworld.com

JAB Creations says:
Let me start out by saying that I've learned nothing in college in regards to web design so far in the two years that I have attended. I am close to getting my associates degree and will be continuing on to pursue my bachelors degree in web development.
However my college is not a school but rather a financial institution uninterested in giving me a professional understanding of the wide range of topics we discuss here (Webmasterworld) every day.

I am curious, is anyone in a school that takes web development (mostly serverside aspects such as PHP, MySQL, ASP, and even forthcoming technologies not yet mainstream) in a serious and professional manner?...

Needless to say I feel frustrated (and robbed) in regards to having thousands of dollars in college loans rack up (and the money from state grants) both go to waste on an education that has taught me NOTHING. Bearocratic pieces of paper backed by a bank and a "college" do not interest me -- knowing and doing my job and position in society as best as I can does. In contrast I have to give credit to webmasterworld and the many good people here who help out people like myself by openly sharing what they know on a daily basis.

Has/does anyone had a more optimistic outlook on their college experience in regards to professionalism from at least a semi-self-educated point of view? What are others learning in other colleges that do actually cover web development?...

Txbakers says:
If you have the patience and a small ability to learn, you can teach yourself anything related to programming.

2by4 says:
...if you're not in a tech centered area like Boston, San Francisco bay area, Portland, Seattle, the odds of your local community college district having this type of skill available plummets to almost zero.

I have to admit that I'm still tempted to take a real unix class, shell scripting etc, and a real db programming class, those are annoying holes that I'd like to fill, and the stuff just doesn't do enough for me to spend free time learning it, although I have an adequate working knowledge of that stuff, but it's not a high level knowledge, it's just adequate. Except of course for playing with Linux, which is always fun

Bedlam says:
Let me start out by saying that I've spent quite a lot of time in schools, usually learning interesting but impractical things, and also that I have zero educational background for the field I'm in now - which is, as you might expect, building websites.

Fortunately for me, this is still an industry where you can get very good jobs based solely on competence. If you've managed to out-do your classmates when it comes to learning the core technologies, and especially if you have a particular area of interest...

CreateErrorMsg says:
You may not be interested (in formal education), but employers are. Self-taught is nice, but a college degree is more than just a laundry list of things you've learned. It speaks to your ability to (a) take and follow direction, (b) study, retain, and learn, (c) work cooperatively, (d) commit to a course of action and see it through, (e) work within a structured environment...all things employers, whether hiring you for a salaried position or "renting" you as a freelancer, are looking for.

In my professional life, I can tell you that literally 95% of what I need to know to do the daily functions of my job were learned post-graduate, yet without having earned a degree, not only would I not have gotten my job, but I would be incapable of keeping it. Again, college frequently isn't about learning specific information. It's about learning to learn, and transitioning into the sorts of life-strategies that make for professional accomplishment and behavior.

What you get a degree in may be incidental (in some fields it matters a great deal, in others not so much) but getting a degree is significant. If you're not feeling satisfied with your pursuit of a web-oriented degree, consider taking a different approach. If WebmasterWorld is helping you learn what you need to learn for web development, perhaps a business degree, marketing degree, or English degree would suit your goals better. Rather than wasting your time in programming classes which you feel are beneath your abilities, you could spend time in courses learning skills that will supplement your self-taught skills nicely, all the while continuing to work toward a degree.

Obviously, there are lots of successful people in the world (and in WebmasterWorld, for that matter) who are self-taught and hold no degree, and I don't in any way mean to begrudge them their success. But remember that people who succeed without formal education usually do so in spite of having no degree, not because of it.

Gpilling says:
I agree with createErrorMsg on this one. When getting a job in the real world it is hard for employers to tell who is skilled and who is not from the resume and interview process. I also think that perhaps a choice of direction that may be the most useful is the marketing or business degree. Just ger something that says you can finish school!

One of my regrets in life is that I didn't finish my degree, and it has prevented me from gettting the interview many times. Ironically, I am now married to a college professor and can go to school for almost nothing - except I don't have any time to do it. Ahh, the problems of hiring employees and running a company.....

I did take a beginner C programming course though, and it was very helpful in understanding PHP as well as programming logic as others have already stated.

Don't underestimate the power of that diploma though. You may not learn anything, but it can help you stand our from the crowd.

Philipkd says:
being a freelance web designer requires self-reliance. Learn how to teach things to yourself, it'll pay off for the rest of your life.

7.  Learn Web Design: Web Design Schools, Web Design Training, by ULinks.com

Learning web design can be a self-taught process, but a long-term career in web design is a preferred choice with training and courses through a formal web design school. Web designers can be involved with a variety of graphics and web development projects as the need for Internet web pages and technology skills is growing rapidly.

In order to learn web design, a formal web design training program can be a valuable first step. Web design schools can provide students with the necessary training and hands-on experience to be successful. Web designers may be involved with managing multimedia files, creating dynamic content, coding HTML, and implementing attractive website layouts and designs.

In order to learn web design, a web designer may also work with a webmaster while enrolling in a web design school for appropriate training.

Job Description and Responsibilities of Web Design School Graduates
In order to learn web design, a student must obtain basic skills and techniques. Graduates of web design schools may be involved with a variety of job duties that require them to:

    * Solve complex internet and web problems
    * Administer processes and procedures for effective layouts
    * Understand basic programming language
    * Show creativity and technical skills in their work
    * Develop and work with various programming languages
    * Set up computer graphics databases
    * Design and implement quality websites and layouts
    * Learn about internet marketing and search engine principle

Career Options After Web Design School
Students of web design schools can choose to work in:
      Small businesses
      Technology firms
      Advertising and Marketing departments
      Healthcare industries
      Network systems and data communication analyst positions
      Computer specialist positions
      Web search portal research positions
      Web development

Web Design Training & Certification
In order to learn web design, many students pursue an Associate’s degree or Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Arts, Animation, or Media Communications. From there, they may choose to specialize in Internet-based subjects, and many internet engineering courses can help provide the foundation for web designer certification. Common web design school courses include:

    * Website Layout and Design
    * Understanding Javascript
    * Implementing Java Applets
    * Adding Dynamic Data and Content
    * Web Server Principles
    * Using Forms & Tables
    * Creating Web Graphics
    * How to Market a Website
    * Web Design Business Fundamentals
    * Fundamentals of HTML
    * Audio, Video, and Multimedia Integration

Degree programs and certificates vary by each of the web design schools, and these are available in a variety of formats. Each web design school determines the courses of study available, and most offer a Bachelor of Science or Associate of Science in Computer Technology Systems. Some web design schools offer an online program that provides flexibility to take courses remotely. Diplomas and certificates are also available. Receiving the appropriate web design training is an important part of developing a long-term career in the field.

Certificates are available for beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels in each subject. Web design schools can offer certificates and degrees in:

    * Interactive Media Design
    * Multimedia and Web Design
    * Website Optimization
    * Search Engine Integration
    * Basic Web Design
    * Film & Television
    * Video Game Design
    * 3D/Animation/Multimedia

Accreditation of Web Design Schools
Web design schools are generally accredited by the same accreditation body of the Art or Technology Institute that offers the program. This may include the Commission of Higher Learning of the region, or other accrediting body.

Web Design School Graduates Earning Potential and Employment Prospects
Web design school graduates have an advantage over independently-educated web designers because of the formal training and hands-on experience they receive. Web design schools can better prepare students for employment in the highly competitive technology industry.

Web designers can also choose to start their own business to bid on contracts for various projects. The development of new technologies and tools is making a career in web design a rapidly growing employment option. Average earnings for computer specialists were $59,480 in 2004, and design service specialization averaged $57,430. Beginning web designers typically earn between $40,000 and $150,000 depending on their skill level. Related occupations include:
      Computer programming
      Computer and Information Systems Managers
      Systems Engineers
      Graphic Artists
      Computer Animation
      Desktop Publishing.

Page compiled by Eric Gondwe

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