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What is Web Development?

Delaware is a small state that leaves a large footprint on the national economy. Its generous tax policies have resulted in a financial sector that ranks in the top 50% nationally. Meanwhile, its other top sectors rank in the mid to high 40s, which makes more intuitive sense given Delaware's small geographic size. Regardless, Delaware's economy is vibrant and diverse, making it a key part of life on the eastern seaboard.

Their real estate sector, for instance, brings in over $10billion, which makes it the 41st largest nationally and growing. Delaware is seeing growth in tourism along its Atlantic coast and advances in remote work may infuse the state with home buyers from Baltimore and the greater Washington DC area. Meanwhile, Delaware's 3rd largest industrial sector is professional and business services including firms that provide legal, accounting, and high-tech services, among other functions. The fourth and fifth largest industrial sectors in Delaware are social services including education, healthcare, and social assistance; and manufacturing, respectively.

A web developer is a computer professional who specializes in building and maintaining websites for their clients or employers. Sometimes developers are distinguished from designers with the former focusing on the back end of a website while the latter uses HTML and CSS to create a good-looking interface for users. Developers are often thought of as more code-heavy workers who solve hefty technical problems related to security, ecommerce, and database integration.

Since every sector needs websites, web developers are found in a wide range of working environments. However, every website developer spends most of their working day on a computer terminal. There, they write and test code to ensure that their sites work with optimal performance. They may work in digital marketing companies, where their code helps optimize their clients' websites for search engines. Others might work for some of Delaware's financial firms where they protect their databases from hackers and generally ensure that there is never a hitch in how the sites perform.

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Online Web Development Education in Delaware

Given that Delaware's third largest industrial sector is professional and business services, it's clear that web development services are vital to the state's economy. After all, every business these days needs some sort of a website, if not social media and a mobile app, as well. For instance, Delaware's top industrial sector, finance and insurance, relies heavily on web interfaces for its businesses. Not only do consumers use their web portals to make payments, but their corporate clients rely on up to date information on lending rates, credit, and balance data.

To keep Delaware's businesses vital and competitive, the state government makes sure that there are enough in-person and online web development degree programs available. Nearly every community college, four-year college, and university is funded to support programs designed to prepare students to thrive as web developers.

In turn, Delaware colleges and universities strive to staff their faculty rosters with professionals who can ensure that students are prepared with cutting edge knowledge that will ensure long-term success. To do so, they recruit the best PhDs that academia can produce. They also look for working professional web developers who have the credentials necessary to teach at the post-secondary level. These working developers are vital in showing students how they solved problems for a variety of clients. When paired with scholarly, academic web development instruction, pedagogy informed by experience means so much more. students interested in degree programs in computer programming, web design, systems analysis, and web development will want to consider many colleges and universities in Delaware such as Delaware County Community College, Wilmington University, and more campus and online options all over the state.

Online Associate Degree in Web Development (AS)

There's no better way to launch a career in website development than with a two-year associate web development degree from one of Delaware's top community colleges. Those two years will require that students cover the entire core college curriculum and then top off their education with courses in web development. This degree should be adequate for landing an entry-level position as website developer.

Since most website developers need certificates to take their careers to the next level, it's smart to start with an associate web development degree. This is because the coursework in the degree provides a strong foundation for later learning. Students can then take their fundamental understanding of coding and web technologies and then specialize in specific coding languages such as Java, PHP, or Python, to name a few. Further, while some see the core courses as superfluous and not relevant to the working world, they instill soft skills that make a real difference in corporate America.

Online Bachelor's Degree in Web Development (BS)

Perhaps the best way to launch a career as a website developer is with a bachelor’s web development degree. Employers place a higher value on a bachelor’s degree than an associate degree, but they still prioritize one's skills above all. The good news is that students can diversify their knowledge base while completing focused, specialized undergraduate degree programs. One key benefit of a full four-year degree program is the ability to attach a minor concentration to one's bachelor’s degree. For a web developer who is more interested in the user experience, this could mean a minor in art and design. Web developers who are more interested in creating websites for financial institutions might consider focusing on mathematics courses such as statistics or even accounting.

Another key benefit of a bachelor’s web development degree program is the ability to complete an internship. Students can earn credit while working in a web development firm or department. This real-world experience looks terrific on a resume and can help students begin to build a professional network.

Online Master's Degree in Web Development (MS)

These days, a master’s degree is all but mandatory for those who want to get ahead in corporate America. Web developers are urged to find the best website development master’s degree for them. On the other hand, some who are itching to move up the corporate ladder can look at management or MBA programs. There are many MBA programs that provide a concentration in information technology or some other high-tech concentration.

Web developers who are eager to advance their education don't need to worry about making time for class because so many high-tech master’s degrees are available online. An online master’s web development degree program enables students to complete their work on their own schedule, while still remaining at work. Since many web developers work as independent contractors, they can continue to be the master of their own schedule while completing an advanced degree. Even those who choose an MBA are sure to find a top-rated online MBA program that features a web development concentration.

Online PhD Degree in Web Development (PhD)

While a few high-tech career paths place top value on a PhD or doctorate, that's not so common in web development. However, a web developer who focuses their doctoral research on a topic such as cybersecurity or cryptography is sure to find many job offers. Other doctoral programs that a web developer might benefit from can include data science and mathematics, not to mention computer science.

After all, website development is closely related to software development. Indeed, many websites function as stand-alone applications, which happen to rely on a web browser environment. Thus, web developers can take their career in new and exciting directions when they complete a doctoral degree.

PhD holders have other options, as well. They can pursue work in academia. While many think initially of teaching as a college professor, there are other options. Specifically, a PhD in a high-tech field can potentially find a tenured position as a research faculty member. This means that they can pursue their intellectual passion without having to grade papers or deliver lectures.

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Become a Web Developer in Delaware

Website developers are everywhere. We all rely on websites to deliver our information, work materials, and entertainment. Many younger students may take the internet for granted as a utility that is as vital as running water and electricity. Thus, it's easy to overlook how one might join the ranks of Delaware's website development community. In fact, there is no one clear set of instructions. Rather, there are guidelines that students can follow in their own unique way to success.

The first part of the journey to website developer is discovering a passion for computers. Youngsters who are curious about how websites work might start using their web browser's tools to inspect the code for their favorite websites. From that point, they can start learning to write code on their own. Website development offers great introductory languages that students can dive into immediately. HTML, for instance, is an intuitive and rather easy language to pick up. Students can easily begin to design their own websites with rudimentary HTML skills. They might even set up a website for their favorite club at school.

In fact, the sooner a student begins to create a web development portfolio, the better. They can take free or very affordable web development courses online. There are even full developer bootcamps that can be purchased for a week's allowance money. Though they might not offer a certificate of accomplishment, students who put the knowledge to practical use can start building their all-important portfolio.

In high school, students may have the opportunity to take a web development course, especially if they are in a STEM high school. They are also likely to meet like-minded computer aficionados who can share knowledge and perhaps even collaborate on larger projects. It's not unusual for high school students to delve into web development as a side business.

In the third year of high school, students should start thinking about college. It's vital to decide whether they want to start with a bachelor’s degree or an associate degree. The latter will come at a significant discount and help the student jump right into work, while a bachelor’s will provide a stronger foundation for later success on the corporate ladder.

Regardless, it's vital to earn some form of academic degree. An education is immutable and will always serve a person well. The key is to find a program that matches one's long-term goals as well as current interests. No matter what, the program should have at least a CHEA-approved accreditation.

Careers for Web Development Graduates

  • Web Developer
    These high-tech gurus design and maintain websites for their clients or employer. Developers most commonly work on the back end of a website. They ensure that all the technical aspects of the website work and meet user needs. For instance, they connect payment portals to a site and databases that deliver the content everyone wants. Developers can specialize in specific languages but the best languages to start with are HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
  • Web and Digital Designer
    These high-tech workers focus on the user experience found on a website. Not only do they pick the colors and fonts of a website, but they help organize sites so that users can find everything they need. Designers should be savvy with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript while having in-depth knowledge of design software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and the rest of the Adobe Creative Suite.
  • Web Content Manager
    Content managers often oversee websites that focus on various sorts of information. This can be anything from a newspaper's website to a corporate website that continually publishes blog posts, videos, and podcast content. Content managers need to be savvy with SEO best practices while having excellent editing and content strategy skills.
  • Front-end Developers
    Every piece of software, from word processors to entertainment websites, needs a front-end developer. These tech workers focus on the user's experience and leave the back end, nuts and bolts details to the coders. Front-end developers need to be able to code for the images and icons involved in their project while being able to communicate their needs to the back-end developers who make everything work.
  • Information Security Analyst
    These cyber security experts may also be called infosec analysts. Their focus is on assessing and perfecting their firm's cyber security protocols and systems. They need to continually research the field to learn better ways of thwarting a hacker's attack. In Delaware, the financial sector surely hires many infosec experts to keep their resources safe.
  • Graphic Designer
    This field is where art meets technology. Graphic design school these days is as concerned with technical details and practices as it is design theory and aesthetic sensibility. Graphic designers create images and layouts for both print and digital media using tools such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Blender, and InDesign, among others.
  • Game Developer
    Video gaming is a huge industry these days, and many video game fans have ideas for the next big game. Game developers come in many different forms. Some are coders who use their coding language skills to make everything work. Others are graphic designers and artists who bring a game to life with interesting artwork including characters, scenery, and weapons. There are also developers who write the stories behind the games. This field is highly competitive, but there are always new stories of independent game developers who've hit the big time.
  • Software Tester
    Every piece of software, from video games to websites, needs skilled experts to test it. Software testers typically seek vulnerabilities in a piece of software that they might exploit to break the application. They also strive to push the limits of the software to discover its true capabilities. This position may not even require a degree, favoring experience with certain sorts of software.

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