Whether you perform most of your digital activities on a smartphone or a PC, the choice of available applications appears endless and is growing by the day. Some look great but don’t work as well as they should. Some look rather bland but get the job done, while others are both super-efficient and visually pleasing. The latter might be the result of cooperation between talented front-end and back-end developers. However, it could also be the work of someone who has completed a full-stack programming course.

A typical web application consists of two main parts. One runs in the browser and is known as the client or front-end. The other part is known as the back-end and runs on the webserver. The front-end contains written and graphical information and provides an interface by which the user can access the back-end or server-side functionality. For example, developing a simple application to display the price of an item when clicked might require HTML and CSS knowledge for the user interface and Javascript plus SQL skills for the server-side functions. Typically, a full-stack programming course will cover these areas as part of a more comprehensive collection of front- and back-end tools.

In the case described above, HTML and CSS are primarily formatting tools that determine the look and feel of a web page. However, CSS can also add some interesting functionality, like popups and dynamic effects, such as colour changes, if you possess the necessary knowledge. However, to display the price of a clicked item in a popup window, a back-end programmer must write some Javascript that will respond to the click by running an SQL query to retrieve the correct figure and other stored details from a database. After a full-stack programming course, a learner should be competent to create a user-friendly interface and write the code for whatever back-end functionality may be necessary to complete the application. 

There are now more than 1,5 billion active websites, so qualified web developers are seldom short of job opportunities. At the same time, more and more users are turning to mobile applications and the greater convenience of accessing them from anywhere. That said, many users still prefer a native app that they can download and run on a PC. A full-stack programming course must enable learners to create apps that function across multiple platforms. Consequently, learners must study cross-platform compatible languages such as Java, Python and C#.net. They will also need to become familiar with productivity tools like the Spring and Hibernate Framework and software development methodologies such as Waterfall, Agile and DevOps.

Of course, you have the option to focus purely on client-side development, creating intuitive interfaces and enhancing the user experience. Likewise, you could specialise in server-side technologies and relational databases like SQL and MySQL. However, completing a full-stack programming course could double your employment prospects.

If you decide on the latter course of action, geeks4learning offers a choice of two courses leading to an NQF5-level, internationally recognised qualification. Both are of twelve months’ duration and share most of their content, the main difference being that while one focuses on Java development, the other emphasises C#.net projects. Previous programming knowledge, though helpful, is not a prerequisite for entry into either of these full-stack programming courses.