Do You Need a Degree To Become A Web Developer?

Gift Egwuenu

Written by Web Developer

November 10, 2022
Do You Need a Degree To Become A Web Developer?

This article aims to enlighten individuals interested in becoming web developers that they do not need a college degree to become one. Studying to become a web developer has been made accessible to everyone interested in pursuing that path, and this is because the internet has made it possible to learn these skills on your own without the need to attend university or get a college degree.

While it is also an advantage for people with a computer science degree, a computer science degree is not a prerequisite for becoming a web developer in today's world. You can learn this skill within a few months, and this is not to slightly exaggerate how possible it is.

Who’s a Web Developer?


A Web Developer specializes in designing, building, and maintaining web applications. They are tasked with using technologies like HTML, CSS & JavaScript to write code and build out a website or web application.

From the design to the functionality, a website is designed and maintained by a developer or primarily a team of web developers. Web development can be split into three categories, Frontend development (client-side), Backend development (server-side), and Fullstack development (client-side and server-side).

Web Developer

Diagram describing different web development roles

  • Frontend Developer
    A frontend developer designs and builds the physical part of a website. The elements you see on a website, from the color, text, images, and search query, are all handled by a front-end developer.

  • Backend Developer
    A backend developer handles all the complex logic, functionality, database management, application programming interface (APIs), servers, and architecture, basically all the work behind the scenes that make a website or application functional. For instance, when you visit a website and search for information, how the website handles your request and returns the result is made possible by the backend developer.

  • Full Stack Developer
    A full stack developer develops the client-side and server-side of a website or web application. That means this individual must be skilled in both front-end and back-end technologies. According to Indeed, the average salary of a web developer is $67,996 per year. Aside from being motivated by the need to build skills and being super great at it, the salary range is also encouraging.

How to Become a Web Developer


Becoming a web developer requires a system or method of learning. To learn a skill, you need a learning path, which will help you stay focused on learning the right skills needed on the job. We may agree that there’s no definite method to follow. However, based on research and experience from professionals in the field, you now get to shadow trusted patterns to get us moving quickly and avoid mistakes that may slow down your progress.

These are a few common paths to take if you’re considering learning web development:

1. Choose an area of specialization
Web development is a very broad field, and it’s impossible to learn it all at once. We advise you to select an area of specialization, whether frontend developer or backend development, start somewhere, and build upon your knowledge as you further your learning journey.

2. Always be Learning
After choosing your focus area, you should start learning, and it’s always good to identify the learning path to follow, which can be through different routes, learning from a Bootcamp, web development program or degree, or being self-taught.

3. Develop your Skill
Working on numerous projects gives you muscle memory, and If you want to build your skills faster, you should practice frequently. Also, you wouldn’t have much trouble practicing thanks to the number of free resources available online for you to practice. Examples of such sites include: Codecademy, Freecodecamp, Coderbyte, and Coursera.

4. Learn Version Control System
A version control system allows multiple people to collaborate on the same document or file. Web developers can work in a team with other developers, and track changes made to a document, even when deleted or corrupted. Also, you can refer to the history and restore it. Some examples of version control systems include Git, SVN, Mercurial, etc. Out of many version control systems, Git is the most popular. It works with GitHub, a software development and version control hosting service. GitHub is responsible for storing and tracking copies of your git repository. It’s also used for collaborating on projects amongst developers, making it easy to share files without disrupting each other's working environment.

5. Build a Portfolio
Employers are interested in seeing results to determine your talent and capabilities, and having a web portfolio would help show your skills and make you stand out in the pool of other job applicants seeking a job because you have an edge by showing the work you’ve done compared to those who don’t have a portfolio. So, by all means necessary, don’t hesitate to show your skills and what you have done.

The different routes to becoming a web developer


There are several routes to becoming a web developer. We’ll highlight a couple of them:

  • Attend a BootCamp
    A web developer Bootcamp is a training program designed to assist newcomers in launching their careers. Individuals can enroll in various boot camp programs during the learning phase. Bootcamps will take a lot of your time and dedication because they are designed to help you feel accountable for obtaining the abilities required for the job market. Since a Bootcamp is intensive, it is highly advised to dedicate a lot of time to it, at least 20 hours per week. Since you'll be working in a group, missing deadlines for tasks and projects could negatively affect your learning progress in the program. Knowing that you'll be working with a team in the real world stimulates and strengthens communication skills, which is helpful for the real-world job market.
  • Be a Self-Taught Developer
    This learning technique gives you complete control over your learning needs. By choosing this path, you will be free to create your learning journey rather than being a part of a system (a Bootcamp or learning program) that creates one for you. You'll be in charge of creating your curriculum, which may include the types of projects or challenges you'd like to solve that you're interested in. Additionally, you can sign up for free online courses that will award certification upon successful completion. Being self-taught has the benefit of allowing you to create your schedule at your speed.
  • College Degree
    This can be done by enrolling in an online or traditional degree program and earning a computer science or web development degree. While earning a degree may not provide you with the strong abilities or work experience necessary for the job market, it may give you a better understanding of the origins of programming or the fundamentals of development frameworks and structures.

Fundamental Skills of a Web Developer


Frontend Developer Skills

  • HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
    Markup Language for building the layout of a web page.
  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheet)
    Style sheet for styling HTML elements.
  • JavaScript
    A scripting language for making web applications interactive and responsive.
  • CSS Frameworks
    Readymade style sheets for standard web design functions such as fonts, navigation bar, layout, colors, etc. examples of CSS frameworks are Bootstrap, Tailwind CSS, Bulma, etc.
  • JavaScript Frameworks
    Already made tools for building scalable, interactive websites or web applications, which help speed up the development process.
  • API’s (Application Program Interface)
    The application program interface allows communication between the front end and back end.

Backend Developer Skills

  • PHP
    This is a server-side scripting language used for developing dynamic and interactive web pages
  • JavaScript
    Build a fully functional application with Node.js, Express or Nest.js
  • Python
    A high-level programming language used to manage server-side tasks.
  • Java
    A high-performance language that supports object-oriented programming.
  • Database Management
    A database management server stores and manages data in a web application. E.g, MongoDB, MySQL.

Full Stack Developer Skills

A full-stack developer possesses both skills required for front-end and back-end development. They are well-skilled on both ends and can develop a functional application with frontend technologies like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Node.js for the backend.

Wrapping Up


Technology has advanced in many ways that are beneficial to new professional vocations, and as a result, web developers without formal training in computer science are emerging and flourishing in the sector. The paths and strategies stated are essential for becoming a web developer and are required to reach your objective.

To top it off, it's advised that no matter whatever path you choose, you engage yourself in a setting with a group of people who share your enthusiasm for learning. You could take on jobs and find solutions more quickly in this way.

Frequently Asked Questions


Do I need web developer skills to use Shopify or WooCommerce?

No. Both platforms welcome beginners, but you might get more out of WooCommerce’s extensions if you’ve got some previous experience.

Do I need extensive developer skills to operate BuddyPress?

Do I Need Extensive Developer Skills to Operate BuddyPress?

Why should I create a website?

There are many reasons why you should create a website if you’re an artist. You can use it to create a place where people can learn about you, talk about your art, or show off your work.

How do I choose a design for my website?

One of the most important things when creating a website for your art is the design. Even though your pieces of art might be amazing, people will leave if your site is hard to navigate. This is why it’s important that the site is easy on the eyes and easy to navigate.

Gift Egwuenu
About the Author
Gift Egwuenu

Gift Egwuenu is a developer and content creator based in the Netherlands, She has worked in tech for over 4 years with experience in web development. Her work and focus are on helping people navigate the tech industry by sharing her work and experience in web development, career advice, and developer lifestyle videos.

View all posts by Gift Egwuenu
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