Why You Should Still Learn jQuery at a Coding Bootcamp

Liz Eggleston

Written By Liz Eggleston

Last updated on October 22, 2021

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jQuery is a JavaScript framework that’s used to build out interactivity in websites. But if you Google, “jQuery,” you might think that this is a dying technology! So should you still learn jQuery in 2022? In today’s video Q&A, Zachary Lynch, an instructor from Sabio, is here to talk us through jQuery – what jQuery is, how developers use it in the real world, and 3 things you would learn about jQuery at a bootcamp like Sabio

Meet Your Expert:

  • Zach is an instructor at Sabio in California teaching specifically JavaScript, jQuery, HTML and CSS to students who have literally never touched code before.
  • Zach served in the Army for 8 years; afterwards, he researched bootcamps and found Sabio. Zach had an interest in coding but it took Sabio to help him start coding and become a professional developer. After Sabio, Zach landed his first job as a Software Engineer for a mortgage Marketing Firm. He built an entire CRM (customer relationship management) for ~1M users, utilizing jQuery.
  • Now, he’s teaching students the way he was taught – full circle!

What is jQuery?

jQuery is a JavaScript library which allows developers to use code snippets or condensed code to do traversal on the page, do event handling (ie. users clicking buttons), or make changes to certain elements of the page using JavaScript. 

Instead of developers writing lines and lines of new code, jQuery helps developers do this quickly and easily. jQuery is a classic JavaScript library – a collection of reusable, pre-written code that a developer can use throughout their own applications. 

jQuery in the Real World

What is jQuery used for? Could you give us an example of functionality that a developer may use jQuery to add?

The most basic example is adding functionality to a button on the webpage - when you click that button, you want it to do something!

For example, if you’re building an application to store all of your clients and you want to click on a client’s profile, jQuery will allow you to click “Save Contact.” You expect that Save button to do something – send that data to the database. 

jQuery provides you tools and methods to simplify that process – it could fill out the entire form for the Contact with all necessary data or it could update that Contact’s record. It makes Event Handling very simple.

Tell us three things you’ll learn about jQuery or three times you’ll use jQuery at a bootcamp like Sabio?

  • Updating HTML and CSS on the page. If you want to make a component look different after a certain action, jQuery has a ton of methods that help you do this.
  • Utilizing jQuery methods and arguments to insert new data into Arrays, Objects, and Variables in order to update the page.
  • Accessing and rendering data from your server with jQuery’s AJAX calls to create dynamic web pages. Working with jQuery’s Ajax calls allow you to do API calls from your database to your front-end application – this is where we get our data from. 

Those are some basic fundamentals that you would learn at a bootcamp like Sabio. And those things transfer over to other, more complex front-end libraries like React and Angular.

Is jQuery dead or dying? 

Why is this the first search result when you Google, “jQuery”? What is replacing jQuery?

Very good question – jQuery is not dead. Perhaps it’s being phased out by other front-end libraries like React or Angular. There are even hundreds of small libraries that can do what jQuery does.

However, many small-to-medium sized businesses still use jQuery because it allows you to get an application up and running very quickly, with a minimal amount of code. For instance, if you want to operate a simple Shopify website, Shopify runs on jQuery API development!

For the most part, there’s still massive utilization of jQuery in the workforce today. My first job as a professional developer, building an entire CRM application, required using the jQuery framework.

Why jQuery is Still Crucial to Learn in 2022

Even though jQuery might have alternatives now, why is it still important for students to learn jQuery? Why does Sabio still teach jQuery? 

If you work at a small business with legacy code, you’ll likely end up using jQuery. 

jQuery has a very small learning curve, which is why we start out teaching jQuery at Sabio.

jQuery also helps you really understand the foundational level of what JavaScript is doing on the page? 

  • How do I update a specific element?
  • How do I put data from a user onto a card on the page? 
  • How do I make a button fire?

These foundations can be cemented with jQuery.

At what point in the curriculum do students learn jQuery? Is jQuery basic or advanced?

For my students who have never coded before, jQuery can be something you learn within 2-3 days or a week of your training at Sabio. It’s simple, not time-consuming and great to start with before we move onto the more advanced and complex frameworks.

Should a bootcamp graduate expect to be asked about jQuery in a technical interview these days?

Absolutely. When I was a student at Sabio, we started out learning jQuery and then moved onto other more complex languages; but the interview I got was a jQuery position! I took a day or two 

  1. Can you loop through this data and show what data is returned? One of the most popular questions is 4 loops
  2. Can you update this page with data using jQuery?

Realistically, you could learn these concepts in a day!

The foundational level of training comes from jQuery and JavaScript, so knowing those two things will put you ahead of the curve, because they translate to other languages very easily.

Zach’s Advice

You’ll be tempted to learn all of these amazing languages and platforms out there and they’re all worth knowing, but jQuery is the first I would recommend for getting a baseline understanding of how to use JavaScript and how to update an HTML page. 

And of course, start coding now! 

Find out more and read Sabio reviews on Course Report. This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with Sabio.

About The Author

Liz Eggleston

Liz Eggleston

Liz Eggleston is co-founder of Course Report, the most complete resource for students choosing a coding bootcamp. Liz has dedicated her career to empowering passionate career changers to break into tech, providing valuable insights and guidance in the rapidly evolving field of tech education.  At Course Report, Liz has built a trusted platform that helps thousands of students navigate the complex landscape of coding bootcamps.

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