Creator of the complete web developer andrei neagoie sits next to pc

Is The Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery worth it?

The Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery is a massive, modern and engaging coding bootcamp-style course.

Produced by coding instructor Andrei Neagoie, it covers everything you need to know to get started with a career in web development.

So far so good, right?

But the thing is, it’s not an original concept.

Many coding bootcamp-style courses have been released before it. For example, there’s Colt Steele’s The Web Developer Bootcamp.

Then there’s Angela Yu’s The Complete 2020 Web Developer Bootcamp.

Both of these courses are well-loved and top-rated among students. And Colt and Angela are Udemy darlings for all the right reasons.

The idea is to teach people both the frontend and backend of web technologies. (This is called full-stack development in the industry.)

Then, by the time they learn the material and build the projects, they’ll theoretically be ready to apply for their first job in the industry.

It’s a big promise!

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With over HALF A MILLION students enrolled in the Colt Steele course, and Angela bragging nearly 150,000 students herself, releasing an online coding bootcamp-style course is a high-stakes game.

So the question is…

Is The Complete Web Developer in 2020 by Andrei Neagoie even worth it?

The answer is yes. Here’s why:

While the Colt Steele bootcamp is good, it’s outdated and/or missing components. For example, it doesn’t cover modern JavaScript or JavaScript frameworks. These are both things you would find at any in-person coding bootcamp.

And while the Angela Yu course is rock solid with excellent production values, the tech stack is practically the same as Colt’s. However, she does include chapters on ES6 and React. (ES6 is a relatively new way of coding JavaScript. React is a popular JavaScript library.)

But the Andrei course just turns up the heat on every metric. For example, Andrei’s course does show you ES6 and React. He shares some cool tools like PostgreSQL AND incorporates a unique mega-project called SmartBrain.

Andrei’s version of a coding bootcamp course stands out in a few more ways.

1.The Complete Web Developer Feature Set is Excellent

This course has a feature set that outshines the other bootcamp style courses. Here’s what I mean:

The Tech Stack

The tech stack simply means what types of technologies are taught. For example, every web developer coding bootcamp course is going to have sections on HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

Those are the building blocks on the web.

Where instructors decide to go after that, however, is where things get interesting. Andrei’s tech stack is the most modern and compelling. He gives you the building-block basics so you can build web pages. Then we start getting into the interesting stuff like:

  • React — a hot JavaScript library developed by Facebook
  • The Star Wars API (there’s a whole section on APIs).
  • A section dedicated NPM + NPM scripts
  • PostgreSQL
  • How to perform Code & Security reviews

There’s a lot more to cover, but these are a few of the unique items in this course. In a nutshell, here’s what you’ll learn on front and backend (this is a very abbreviated list):

Frontend:

  • HTML & CSS
  • Semantic UI
  • JavaScript (all the way to ES10)
  • React & Redux
data structures and objects examples from the complete web developer in 2020 zero to mastery chapter
Learn about frontend web development and general programming principles with the JavaScript objects video.

Backend:

  • Node
  • Express
  • PostgreSQL
  • Production & Deployment

Miscellaneous

  • Security
  • Authentication
  • Git & GitHub

The Instructor

Creator of Zero to Mastery Academy andrei neagoie talks with students

If you spend even a few minutes on this site or on the RealToughCandy YouTube channel, you’ll see what I think of Andrei as an instructor.

🚨SPOILER ALERT 🚨I am a total fangirl!

WHY?

Because Andrei has style. He has an instructor presence, which means the difference between an actual person talking to you and a dead chatbot.

How many times have you taken a course where the guy sounds like he’s speaking through a piece of plastic wrap in some long-forgotten cave?

Or like they can’t even read off the teleprompter?

It’s frustrating. Because not only is it distracting, but you also have to wonder if that person even knows what they’re talking about. Most courses are exactly like this, especially the cheap ones. Then you end up wasting more time trying to find a legit course than actually studying.

So, yeah. You can call me a fangirl and skip this section and that would be fair enough.

But as a self-taught software developer who endured terrible courses with boring, out-to-lunch instructors, Andrei is a welcome relief. He has a talent for this stuff and it makes a DIFFERENCE.

When you’re spending months with a stranger behind a microphone, you want that person to come across as trustworthy.

The Project

It’s not a typo… There’s only one major project in this entire course. That might turn some people off, but it’s a massive project you’ll be spending days on. The Complete Web Developer landing page claims there’s over 10 projects, but honestly they’re probably not something you’d want to put in a web developer portfolio. Think of them more of coding challenges.

For example, in the Advanced CSS section, you’re challenged to build an animated robot.

the complete web developer in 2020 zero to mastery robot project
A coding challenge in the Advanced CSS section.

But back to the major project.

It’s called SmartBrain and it spans over multiple chapters of the course. It’s a full-stack image recognition app that uses a subset of artificial intelligence (AI) called Machine Learning (which he also has a good course on!).

Don’t worry though, you’re using an API so you don’t have to know how machine learning works. That’s the beauty of APIs as you’ll discover in the course.

Smartbrain project from The Complete Web Developer in 2020 Zero to Mastery course
You’ll build a full-stack image recognition app called SmartBrain as your capstone project.

You’ll be spending a lot of time with this project. It’s not something you’re going to crank out in just a few hours –– Andrei has you add features to it as the course progresses. The final result is a big and fun project that I haven’t seen in any other bootcamp courses.

Login Page for Machine Learning project from The Complete Web Developer in 2020 by Andrei Neagoie
Sign-in page for the SmartBrain app.

2.The add-ons are valuable

Andrei recently launched his own platform called Zero to Mastery Academy. When you become a ZTM student, you don’t just get unlimited access to all courses. You get some fringe benefits too. Firstly, the valuable Discord server (see below). Secondly, you get an exclusive invite to his LinkedIn networking group. Other benefits include:

  • members-only material
  • course completion certificates
  • ability to download all lessons for offline learning

It’s a nice touch. These are actually tangible benefits compared to other sites that offer “tHe SaTisFaCtIoN of kNoWinG y0u’rE lEarnNiNg s0m3ThInG” as a benefit. 🙄

What’s Missing in The Complete Web Developer?

Although this is a high-quality course, it is missing a few things. The biggest thing is probably that pesky little word “Complete,” as in The Complete Web Developer. Remember, web development is a vast area of study, and no course is going to be complete.

You’ll absolutely pick up the basics and build some neat projects. But that’s just scratching the surface. Learning programming and web development is a journey, and simply cannot be learned in a single online course.

On a more technical note, the courses on Zero to Mastery (ZTM) Academy are strictly video-based.

It would have been nice to have interactive code editors or other areas of interactivity.

The video-only format can make it seem like you’re learning, when in fact you’re just watching videos.

It’s very easy to turn this type of platform into a Netflix-style binge session as a student. Even though you spend an entire afternoon on videos, you don’t learn much that way. I’m a huge fan of platforms that have some sort of interactivity for that reason alone.

To be fair, Andrei does note in the course that in order to really learn the material, you should find a an accountability partner and/or join his Discord.

Pros

  • Information is modern and comprehensive
  • Fun projects
  • Engaging instructor

Cons

  • Inconsistent audio levels
  • No built-in coding environments

ZTM / The Complete Web Developer Discord Community

As I’ve mentioned in an earlier post, one of the best features of the Zero to Mastery Academy is the Discord server.

Not only can you meet fellow students from around the world, Andrei actually checks in daily with his peeps. It’s just not something you see a lot with online courses.

It’s encouraging knowing that the creator cares enough about his students’ success. This alone can be a motivator for people.

The ZTM Discord also serves as a real-time help center where somebody is sure to help you with your question.

discord community member discussing the value of the zero to mastery discord server
One of RealToughCandy’s Discord members giving the ZTM Discord a shoutout

There are also opportunities for finding an ideal accountability partner, including a dedicated room for linking up with like-minded students.

Can you get hired with just The Complete Web Developer?

Some people have claimed to have landed a junior developer position just by completing this course and creating a portfolio with the course projects. I have no doubt this is true, but don’t count on it for your own situation!

It’s a rarity.

I absolutely am not here to discourage anybody, but you have to be realistic.

The truth is, over 100,000 people have taken this course and hiring managers have seen the SmartBrain project before. This is an awesome course, but as I emphasized earlier in this post, the learning does not stop here. This is only the beginning. And The Complete Web Developer in 2020 is a damned good start.

Summary

To summarize, The Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery is worth it. Although it faces some tough competition, Andrei has combined his unique instructional style with modern web technologies. He fused that package with the ZTM add-ons like the Discord and LinkedIn networking group for a high-quality bundle with real value.

This course will probably take more than a month to finish if you’re a total beginner, so consider signing up for the ZTM annual plan. That way you can take your time with the course and work your way into the others (such as the junior to senior developer course, another banger).

On the other hand, if you just want to explore things and test the waters, or you’re a fast learner, the monthly plan would be a more ideal fit. You can always upgrade to the annual plan later if that’s not enough time.

Check out the course here and tell Andrei that RTC sent you. RealToughCandy logo

That’s all for now. Keep the party going and follow me on YouTube where I feature all things software development!


FAQ

Should I buy The Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery?

The Complete Web Developer is worth buying if you’re looking for an inexpensive way to learn modern web development this year. The idea of an “all in one” online coding bootcamp-style course isn’t unique, but Andrei Neagoie combines updated material, interesting projects and a natural gift for instruction to create a high-quality 30+ hour course.

Who is Andrei Neagoie?

Andrei is a self-taught programmer based in Canada. He is the creator of the best-selling course The Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery. He has previously worked in both Silicon Valley and Toronto as a senior software developer. Currently Andrei works full-time as an instructor, having launched his own learning platform ZeroToMastery.io in 2020.

What is Zero to Mastery?

Zero to Mastery is a series of courses produced by self-taught software developer Andrei Neagoie. The series includes: Complete Machine Learning and Data Science: Zero to Mastery, Complete Python Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery, and the Complete Web Developer in 2020: Zero to Mastery. It is now also the name of his learning platform where his flagship offering is the Zero to Mastery Academy.

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