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What is Web Development?

Web development degree programs can be found at both the undergraduate and graduate level. Courses may include topics such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, .NET framework, content management systems, and other programming languages. Students will also learn about web design principles and strategies for building websites that are engaging to visitors. Additionally, courses may cover topics related to website security and server administration.

Undergraduate degree programs in web development often include a mix of general education and technical courses. In addition to the core coursework in web development technologies, students may take classes on project management or software engineering fundamentals. Those who pursue an advanced degree may specialize in areas such as mobile app development or data science principles related to website design and maintenance.

Regardless of the level of study pursued, web developers must have strong communication skills and familiarity with key concepts related to software engineering best practices. They must also understand how to use industry standard tools properly when creating or maintaining a website or application interface. With proper training from accredited colleges, students can gain the knowledge needed for successful careers in this field.

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Web Development Education in Illinois

Web developers are responsible for creating websites from concept to completion. They use coding languages such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and PHP to create the structure of the website. Web developers will also design the aesthetics of the site by writing code that controls the appearance of elements on each page—from fonts to colors to layout.

A web developer must also have an understanding of user experience (UX) design so that they can make sure visitors have an intuitive browsing experience while they're visiting your website. UX plays an important role in helping users understand how your site works and navigate between pages.

As part of their job, web developers maintain and update sites with new features or bug fixes. They may also be asked to monitor site performance, evaluate analytics data, and suggest ways to improve ratings or conversion rates. The goal is to keep visitors engaged while also keeping page load time minimal and ensuring minimal downtime when new content is added.

Aspiring web developers who don't hold an undergraduate degree in computer science or IT could consider obtaining one specialized certification or diploma in web development from any number of accredited distance learning institutions or career schools. This certification will help demonstrate a candidate's technical skillset and advancements within this field should be expected over time as technology develops quickly on a global scale.

The future for web developers looks promising; today, it's estimated that there are over 10 million websites online worldwide, with growth projected at around 4% annually! So, if you've got programming chops but lack experience, don't worry - now might just be the perfect time to break into this appealing field.

Online Associate Degree in Web Development (AS)

An associate degree in web development is an undergraduate program that typically takes two years to complete and they are usually offered by a community college. It provides the foundational skills and knowledge necessary to pursue a career in the field, whether or not you choose to complete further education. Coursework includes topics such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, database systems, object-oriented programming, and graphic design. In addition to technical skills, students gain experience working with clients and developing project plans for website projects.

The curriculum also covers the fundamentals of computer science and other related topics like software engineering. Graduates have the opportunity to pursue a wide range of careers in IT, including web developer positions at companies or as freelancers. With an associate degree in web development, graduates are prepared to work on websites of all sizes from small businesses up through large corporations.

Online Bachelors Degree in Web Development (BS)

A bachelors in web development combines elements of computer science with web design, programming, and software engineering. In fact, you might complete a degree in computer science with a web development concentration. Students learn the fundamentals of computer programming, as well as modern development tools such as HTML5, JavaScript, and CSS. Through their coursework, they develop proficiency in building websites, creating content management systems, interactive and social media, and developing mobile applications. These degrees also often include courses on user interface design, network security, and database administration so that students can integrate various components into a comprehensive website or application.

Additionally, some programs offer concentrations in areas such as E-commerce or digital media to provide graduates with specialized knowledge for specific career paths. Graduates of a web development program are prepared to create both simple websites for personal use and more complex projects for business purposes. They may find jobs at digital agencies or software companies designing and maintaining websites for clients, working as freelancers customizing WordPress sites, developing mobile apps, creating databases, or managing online stores.

Online Masters Degree in Web Development (MS)

A master’s degree in web development is an advanced degree program that prepares students to design and create websites or web applications. It typically includes instruction in topics such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and other scripting languages; server-side programming; database management systems; content management systems; web graphics design tools; information architecture principles; and search engine optimization (SEO). The goal of the program is to provide the necessary skills for graduates to become professional web developers who can create dynamic websites with interactive features and ensure their effectiveness.

In addition to technical coursework related to coding languages and website development theory and practice, a master’s degree in web development also usually provides instruction in project planning and management strategies. This helps graduates understand how to work as part of a team while developing complex projects such as a website or an application. Along with this knowledge come additional methods of communication including working within a client's budget constraints while still delivering quality results on time. Furthermore, graduates may receive instruction on marketing tactics for optimizing online presence through SEO practices, as well as engaging with customers online by using various social media platforms.

Online PhD Degree in Web Development (PhD)

A PhD in web development typically requires the completion of coursework, examinations, and a dissertation. Coursework can focus on a variety of topics such as programming languages, database management systems, web server technologies, software engineering principles, computer networking protocols and standards, and object-oriented design. In addition to the core material related to web development theory and practice, students must take courses in research methodology. These courses help prepare students for their dissertation by teaching them how to effectively conduct scientific investigations into real-world problems.

Examinations are designed to assess student's knowledge of the material learned during their coursework. It is also used as an opportunity for faculty members to evaluate the student's understanding of the subject matter. Upon successful completion of all exams required by the program, a student may begin work on their dissertation project. A dissertation is a research project that must demonstrate an original contribution to the field of web development through investigation into either theoretical or practical aspects of software engineering or computer science topics related to web development. The dissertation project can take many forms, such as developing applications or running experiments; however, it must ultimately be approved by both program faculty advisors and university committees before it will be accepted for graduation requirements.

Online Web Development Certifications

Web development certifications are an excellent way to prove that you have the skills and expertise needed to pursue a career in web development. These certifications may provide an intensive curriculum that covers all aspects of web development, from coding languages such as HTML and CSS to more advanced topics such as server-side scripting and database management, or they may only cover one single aspect. Many of these certifications also include instruction on graphic design, user experience (UX) design, content management systems (CMS), or search engine optimization (SEO). Certifications are typically completed in six months or less, making them a good way to expand your career opportunities without spending much more time in a classroom.

Certification programs vary by provider, but most offer courses on topics like HTML/CSS fundamentals, JavaScript programming basics, mobile application development concepts, and strategies for creating interactive website interfaces. Other specialized courses may focus on business analytics tools, like Google Analytics or developing E-commerce solutions with Shopify. Most certification programs require participants to complete projects that apply the knowledge learned during the course. Projects can range from building a basic website from scratch to developing complex applications with multiple components. Successful completion of all required courses results in a professional certificate that is recognized by employers throughout the industry.

Become a Web Developer in Illinois

Web development is a great way to get hands-on experience with different programming languages and tools, which can be the perfect stepping stone for anyone interested in becoming a web developer. Here, we'll cover the essential steps to becoming a web developer.

  • Step 1: Learn web development fundamentals:

    To begin your journey to become a web developer, you'll need to understand the basics of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and other coding languages. Educating yourself through free online courses, books, or tutorials can give you an understanding of how everything fits together and how each language works without requiring you to spend years in a classroom. This may even gain you entry into the field in a low-level role, but you would be well served to earn some kind of degree if you want to have access to promotions and higher-level roles.

  • Step 2: Earn a degree:

    Earning a degree through courses taken from a reputable institution such as a college, university, or other private institution will provide you with more comprehensive learning material than self-learning alone. Plus, not only will you leave with a degree that will boost your resume for the rest of your career, but you may be able to make valuable contacts that could lead to referral business or internship opportunities that can help grow your career prospects even further.

  • Step 3: Start freelancing as soon as possible

    Freelance work is a great way for aspiring web developers to gain real-world experience while still keeping up with their studies and honing their craft in their spare time. You could get connected with potential clients by creating an online portfolio website showcasing some of your best work or build out successful freelance profiles on sites like Upwork or Fiverr, where potential customers can find and hire you for their project needs.

  • Step 4: Gain real-world experience through internships

    Getting an internship at a tech company will help prepare you for working as a full-time professional web developer, though it’s likely such positions require two+ years of industry experience or a degree before hiring someone directly onto their team – so it may take longer if this is something that interests you. However, if you're willing to put in the effort, this is definitely worth exploring.

What Can I Do with a Bachelor's in Web Development?

A bachelor's in web development can open up a variety of career opportunities. With this degree, students are trained in programming languages, coding techniques, and design principles to create and maintain websites. These skills can be used to develop user-friendly applications for private companies and public institutions alike. Additionally, graduates may pursue jobs at technology firms or digital marketing agencies as website developers or web application engineers.

Those with a bachelor's in web development can also work as front-end developers or back-end developers. Front-end development requires creating the visual components of a website that visitors interact with, such as menus and buttons. Back-end development involves more technical coding tasks, like working with databases and servers to ensure that websites function properly when users access them online. Finally, many employers value the knowledge of SEO principles that comes along with a degree in web development, which helps promote their products on the internet by increasing their visibility on search engines.

Potential Careers for Web Development Graduates

  • Full-stack Development:

    Front-end developers are responsible for creating stunning websites, apps, and interfaces. As a front-end developer, you'll use the latest technologies to create visually appealing websites and software applications that meet user requirements.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in computer science or related field
    • Proven experience working with HTML, CSS, JavaScript and other web technologies
    • Understanding of web standards, accessibility and usability principles

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for web developers and digital designers in the US in 2021 was $78,300
    • The mean annual wage for web developers in Illinois is $88,880
  • Computer Systems Designer:

    Computer systems designers create the structure, content, and design of computer systems. They use programming languages to write code, create user interfaces, test software, and fix bugs. A degree in computer science or engineering doesn’t hurt one bit when it comes to being a computer systems designer, but there are still plenty of skills needed for the job.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in computer science or related field
    • Experience working with computer systems design
    • Knowledge of operating systems (Linux, Windows)
    • Knowledge of programming languages (JavaScript, C++, Python)
    • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision

    Estimated Salary

    • The mean annual wage for computer network architects in the US in 2021 was $120,650
    • The mean annual wage for computer network architects in Illinois is $124,940
  • UX Researcher:

    User experience (UX) research plays an important role in the success of a product or service. It’s the process of understanding people and what they need from your website, app, platform—anything you design for them. UX researchers use data to gain insights that can inform decisions on how to improve the usability of your product and provide a better overall user experience.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in human-computer interaction (HCI), Psychology, or related field
    • At least four years of experience in UX research or similar role

    Estimated Salary

    • The mean annual wage for web and digital interface in the US in 2021 was $95,460
    • The mean annual wage for web and digital interface in Illinois is $63,370
  • Software Engineer:

    Software developers create vital computer programs, websites, applications, and all sorts of other computer-based products. This profession doesn't come with a one-size-fits-all job description but requires someone who is highly technologically educated and adept at problem solving.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in software engineering, Information Technology, or related field
    • At least 3 years of experience developing software applications
    • Proficiency with C++, Java, Python, JavaScript, HTML/CSS, SQL
    • Strong problem-solving and communication skills

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for software developers, quality assurance analysts, and testers in the US in 2021 was $109,020
    • The mean annual wage for software developers in Illinois is $109,970
  • Computer User Support Specialist:

    Computer user support specialists are responsible for diagnosing, testing, and troubleshooting computer systems. They set up computers, create networks, and configure settings, as well as diagnosing software and hardware problems. If you have technical knowledge and problem-solving skills, and enjoy assisting people, then this might be a great fit for you.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s Degree in computer science or related field
    • Previous experience working as a computer

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for computer user support specialists in the US in 2021 was $57,910
    • The mean annual wage for computer user support specialists in Illinois is $54,330
  • Web and Digital Designer:

    Web and digital designers breathe life into websites, apps, and other digital products. From creating compelling visuals to crafting dynamic user experiences, web and digital designers are highly sought after by organizations looking to build strong online presence.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor's degree in graphic design or related field
    • Proven track record of successful web and digital design projects
    • Expertise in Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign)
    • Knowledge of HTML/CSS coding principles
    • Strong understanding of cross-browser compatibility issues

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for web and digital interface designers in the US in 2021 was $78,300
    • The mean annual wage for web and digital interface designers in Illinois is $63,370
  • Graphic Designer:

    A graphic designer is responsible for creating visual solutions to communication problems using a range of graphic design elements such as typography, images, and illustrations.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor's degree in graphic design or related field
    • Minimum of three years of experience in graphic design
    • Strong portfolio showcasing relevant work
    • Proficiency in Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign)

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for graphic designers in the US in 2021 was $50,710
    • The mean annual wage for graphic designers in Illinois is $57,550
  • Multimedia Programmer:

    A multimedia programmer is a computer specialist who writes code for multimedia applications, often for entertaining or educative purposes. Any owner of a website that utilizes interactive images, animation, streaming video, or other types of content will require the help of a multimedia programmer to create the desired effect.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering or related field
    • At least three years of experience in software development
    • Experience with a variety of programming languages, such as C++, Java, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
    • Knowledge of user interface design principles
    • Familiarity with multimedia production techniques
    • Ability to work independently or as part of a team

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for computer programmers in the US in 2021 was $93,000
    • The mean annual wage for computer programmers in Illinois is $91,060

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