Front End Developer

Front end web development

What is a Front End Developer?

A Front End Web Developer manages what users see in their browser. They design, analyze code, and debug the client side of an application. This makes them responsible for the look, feel, and design of a website or web application. A front End Web Developer is also expected to have some knowledge of the back end as well as frameworks they could be working with. 

Front End vs Back End

The front end is the visible part of the application that users interact with. The back end includes the server, database, and applications that power the front end. The front end is often referred to as the “client side” while the back end is referred to as the “server side.” A Front End Web Developer will work with languages like CSS and JavaScript as well as some frameworks. A Back End Web Developer works almost exclusively with databases, logic, and server side languages like PHP. 

Front End Developer Jobs

According to TJ Kinion of LearningFuze, “Hiring managers are moving away from the computer science degree requirement,” which gives bootcamp graduates more job opportunities than ever before. Front End Developers can look forward to a wide variety of jobs since no two companies have the exact same expectations of a programmer who specializes in front end technologies. A remote Front End Web Developer job is also a distinct possibility.

Here is a list of the most frequent Front End Development jobs for bootcampers:

  • Junior Front End Developer
  • Full Stack Developer
  • Full Stack Web Developer
  • Web Developer
  • Front End Web Developer
  • Front End Engineer
  • JavaScript Developer
  • CSS/HTML Developer
  • Front End Web Designer
  • UI/UX Designer
  • Web Designer
  • Front End Quality Assurance
  • Front End Web Development Instructor
  • Remote Front End Web Developer

Front End Developer Salary

Front End Job Average Salary
Junior Front End Developer $67,770
Full Stack Developer $101,800
Web Developer $97,950

 

Front End Developer Skills

Knowledge of front end languages, frameworks, and critical thinking are essential parts of the developer’s toolbox. Because Front End Developers often work on a team, recruiters are also looking for strong evidence of soft skills. Thankfully, most coding bootcamps teach their students how to demonstrate their transferable skills as well as their technical skills.

Here is a short list of skills and technologies taught at Front End Web Development bootcamps: 

  • HTML - HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language. It is a standardized markup language used for creating a webpage. These pages can include writing, links, pictures, sound, and video. HTML is used to denote these elements so that the web browser can display them correctly. 
  • CSS - CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. CSS is used alongside HTML and JavaScript to control the layout and presentation of a website.
  • Bootstrap - Bootstrap is an open-source toolkit for developing with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript that offers plugins, built-in jQuery, and prebuilt components.  
  • Flexbox - Flexbox is a CSS layout module that standardizes the development of blocks, inline text, tables, and positioning on web pages. 
  • Grid - Grid is a CSS two-dimensional layout system for the web. 
  • JavaScript - JavaScript is the most popular language on the web. It is a scripting language used to enhance and manipulate web pages by adding interactivity.
  • Frameworks - a front end framework is JavaScript code that has been compiled in a specific, standard way for ease of use and efficiency. The layman could consider a framework a template that can be used and changed as needed. 
    • AngularJS - Angular is a framework developed by Google. Angular is essentially a set of tools that allows developers to build a robust application.
    • ReactJS - React is a framework developed by Facebook. React was built to fetch an app’s user interface and updates as quickly as possible. 
    • jQuery - jQuery is a JavaScript library that simplifies a variety of programming operations like mouse clicks and keystrokes, addition and deletion of elements, HTTP requests, and creation of search engine readable content. 
    • NodeJS - Node was created to run JavaScript outside of the browser. This framework creates a bridge between the front end and the back end and the knowledge needed to execute code on a computer. 
    • BackboneJS - Backbone was designed to give structure to web applications by providing developers with models, collections, and views. 
    • EmberJS - Ember was designed to create scalable user interface architecture that is plug-in friendly. 
    • VueJS - Vue is a framework for building user interfaces. It was designed to integrate with other libraries and pre-existing projects.
  • Responsive Design - Since a web page might be viewed on a phone, tablet, or computer, responsive design makes sure the page will look good on any device at the proper dimensions. 
  • Version Control and Git - Version control is how Developers keep projects organized even after changes have been made. Git is a system for tracking changes in source code during development. 
  • Debugging and Testing - A Developer should be able to test the code and remove any bugs found. 
  • Soft Skills - Developers that can communicate clearly and ask the right questions are valuable to employers. Employers also look for developers who are good at problem-solving and working with a team.

Front End Developer Resume

A Front End Developer’s resume should show past experience in a way that frames the transferable skills. Recruiters look for things like previous management experience, jobs requiring clear communication, problem-solving, and other soft skills. A resume should show the proper technical skills listed in the job description, like languages learned and technologies mastered. Listing quantifiable achievements and projects presents your experiences from bootcamp in a way that recruiters can understand quickly and easily. A Front End Web Developer’s resume should also show specialization in front end technologies. 

Front End Developer Interview Questions

Front End Developers can expect to be asked general questions that allow for past experiences to shine like, “Tell me more about yourself,” or “What excites you about coding?” Most interviewers will ask about projects you’ve completed and the process or tools you used to build them. They’ll also ask questions to learn more about your personality to test for cultural fit. Recruiters often ask Front End Web Developers technical questions about HTML, CSS, or JavaScript. Developers should prepare for whiteboarding and a coding challenge as well. 

Front End Developer Portfolio

Front End Web Developers must build and maintain an online portfolio. Showcase the projects you’ve built during bootcamp in your portfolio as well as on your resume. Here are some projects that Developers built during bootcamp and added to their portfolios: 

How to Become a Front End Developer

Now that computer science degrees are not an industry-wide requirement, there is really no standard way to get from complete beginner to Front End Developer. Here are a few paths you can take: 

Coding Bootcamp 

Coding Bootcamp is the quickest, most streamlined way to become a Front End Web Developer. Turing and Grand Circus are among the few bootcamps that offer strictly front end programming tracks. Most bootcamps like Flatiron School teach the full stack and graduates can decide whether they want to specialize in front end or back end, and then get comfortable with their respective technologies. Coding bootcamps typically teach both technical skills and job hunting skills which help more than 80% of graduates secure jobs after bootcamp. Bootcamps can run anywhere from 8-16 weeks and on average cost $14,780 USD. Many bootcamps now offer deferred tuition, Income Share Agreements, or financing options. 

Self Study 

Self study requires more time and self-discipline than any other option. There are a plethora of resources out there like W3schools and Udacity’s Nanodegree programs. Keep in mind that self teaching can get you the technical skills needed to develop an application or website, but you’ll also need to know how to find a job and prove your skills. Learning online can cost anywhere from nothing to thousands of dollars depending on the programs you choose to use. Depending on your commitment, it can take anywhere from 8 weeks to multiple years to learn the skills you’ll need for the job. 

A Computer Science Degree vs. Coding Bootcamp

A college degree is the longest path to becoming a Front End Developer and possibly the most expensive. This route will provide you with theoretical knowledge, mathematics, and exposure to more low level programming than a coding bootcamp. A degree program will also likely have opportunities for internships. Critics say a computer science degree will not provide as much practical experience or tailored career counseling as bootcamp. The average cost of a computer science degree ranges from $35,000 USD and the average duration is 2-4 years. 

Learning to Code Through Your Employer

Some employers will fund coding bootcamps or even teach you to code themselves. Companies like Revature and Morningstar are two examples of companies you could work for that offer programs for beginners

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