To sum it up, front end developers code websites using the building blocks of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript (more on this shortly). They’re the ones who take a design and develop it into a website that works.

If you’re looking to break into tech, front end development is both a straight ahead and versatile way of getting there. You’ll have a specific base of skills that’ll make you attractive to employers, but one that’s broad enough to let you find an employment opportunity that works for you. Trust me, there’s no shortage of demand for front end development in a variety of jobs and environments.

1. HTML/CSS

HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is the standard markup language used to create web pages. A markup language is your way of making notes in a digital document that can be distinguished from regular text. It’s the most basic building block you’ll need for developing websites.

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is the language used to present the document you create with HTML. Where HTML comes first and creates the foundation for your page, CSS comes along next and is used to create the page’s layout, color, fonts, and…well, the style!

Both of these languages are absolutely essential to being a front end developer. Simply put, no HTML/CSS, no web development.

2. JAVASCRIPT/JQUERY

Another MAJOR tool in your front end developer toolbox is going to be JavaScript (JS). Where HTML is a markup language and CSS is a style sheet language, JS is the first language I’ve mentioned that’s a bonafide programming language. What’s the difference? Where HTML and CSS determine the presentation of a page, JS determines the function.

In some instances a very simple website or web page is fine, but for situations where you need interactive features—audio and video, games, scrolling abilities, page animations—JS is the tool you’ll use to implement them (though as CSS evolves, it’s starting to handle a lot of these duties as well).

3. CSS PREPROCESSING

Yes, another skill related to CSS!

CSS on its own, while essential, can sometimes be limiting. One of these limitations is that fact that you can’t define variables, functions, or perform arithmetic operations. This is a problem when a project grows in scale and code base, as you’ll soon find yourself wasting a lot of time writing repetitive code to make changes. Like CSS (and JS) frameworks, CSS preprocessing is another means of making your life as a developer easier and more flexible.

Using a CSS preprocessor like SassLESS, or Stylus, you’re able to write code in the preprocessor’s language (allowing you to do things that might be a huge pain with plain old CSS). The preprocessor then converts that code to CSS so it will work on your website.

Let’s say you decide to tweak the shade of blue you’re using across a site. With a CSS preprocessor, you’d only have to change the hex value in one place instead of going through ALLLL your CSS and changing the hex values everywhere.

4. RESPONSIVE DESIGN

Remember the other day when you only used one device to look at a website? Yeah, me neither. The days of desktop (or even laptop) PCs being the only way of viewing websites are so far gone that I won’t date myself by talking about them.

These days we use any number of computers, phones, and tablets to look at web pages. Ever notice how these pages adjust themselves to the device you’re using without you doing anything on your end? This is due to responsive design. Understanding responsive design principles and how to implement them on the coding side is key to front end development.

One cool thing to keep in mind regarding responsive design is that it’s an intrinsic part of CSS frameworks like the aforementioned Bootstrap. These skills are all interconnected and so as you learn one you’ll often be making progress in the others at the same time.

5. TESTING/DEBUGGING

From a website for your mom’s dog walking business to an international site for online banking, bugs are a reality of the development process. In order to keep things moving you’ll need to test your code for bugs along the way, so the ability to test and debug makes the list of essential skills for front end developers.

There are a couple of different testing methods for web development. Functional testing looks at a particular piece of functionality on your site (like a form or database) and makes sure it does everything you’ve coded it to do.

Unit testing is another method. It tests the smallest bit of code that’s responsible for one thing on your site and examines it individually for correct operation.

Testing is a big part of the front end development process, but fortunately, it’s another area where there are frameworks to help you. Programs like Mocha and Jasmine are designed to speed up and simplify your testing process.

Top 5 Skills you must required to become Frontend Web Developer

To sum it up, front end developers code websites using the building blocks of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript (more on this shortly). They’re the ones who take a design and develop it into a website that works.

If you’re looking to break into tech, front end development is both a straight ahead and versatile way of getting there. You’ll have a specific base of skills that’ll make you attractive to employers, but one that’s broad enough to let you find an employment opportunity that works for you. Trust me, there’s no shortage of demand for front end development in a variety of jobs and environments.

1. HTML/CSS

HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is the standard markup language used to create web pages. A markup language is your way of making notes in a digital document that can be distinguished from regular text. It’s the most basic building block you’ll need for developing websites.

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is the language used to present the document you create with HTML. Where HTML comes first and creates the foundation for your page, CSS comes along next and is used to create the page’s layout, color, fonts, and…well, the style!

Both of these languages are absolutely essential to being a front end developer. Simply put, no HTML/CSS, no web development.

2. JAVASCRIPT/JQUERY

Another MAJOR tool in your front end developer toolbox is going to be JavaScript (JS). Where HTML is a markup language and CSS is a style sheet language, JS is the first language I’ve mentioned that’s a bonafide programming language. What’s the difference? Where HTML and CSS determine the presentation of a page, JS determines the function.

In some instances a very simple website or web page is fine, but for situations where you need interactive features—audio and video, games, scrolling abilities, page animations—JS is the tool you’ll use to implement them (though as CSS evolves, it’s starting to handle a lot of these duties as well).

3. CSS PREPROCESSING

Yes, another skill related to CSS!

CSS on its own, while essential, can sometimes be limiting. One of these limitations is that fact that you can’t define variables, functions, or perform arithmetic operations. This is a problem when a project grows in scale and code base, as you’ll soon find yourself wasting a lot of time writing repetitive code to make changes. Like CSS (and JS) frameworks, CSS preprocessing is another means of making your life as a developer easier and more flexible.

Using a CSS preprocessor like SassLESS, or Stylus, you’re able to write code in the preprocessor’s language (allowing you to do things that might be a huge pain with plain old CSS). The preprocessor then converts that code to CSS so it will work on your website.

Let’s say you decide to tweak the shade of blue you’re using across a site. With a CSS preprocessor, you’d only have to change the hex value in one place instead of going through ALLLL your CSS and changing the hex values everywhere.

4. RESPONSIVE DESIGN

Remember the other day when you only used one device to look at a website? Yeah, me neither. The days of desktop (or even laptop) PCs being the only way of viewing websites are so far gone that I won’t date myself by talking about them.

These days we use any number of computers, phones, and tablets to look at web pages. Ever notice how these pages adjust themselves to the device you’re using without you doing anything on your end? This is due to responsive design. Understanding responsive design principles and how to implement them on the coding side is key to front end development.

One cool thing to keep in mind regarding responsive design is that it’s an intrinsic part of CSS frameworks like the aforementioned Bootstrap. These skills are all interconnected and so as you learn one you’ll often be making progress in the others at the same time.

5. TESTING/DEBUGGING

From a website for your mom’s dog walking business to an international site for online banking, bugs are a reality of the development process. In order to keep things moving you’ll need to test your code for bugs along the way, so the ability to test and debug makes the list of essential skills for front end developers.

There are a couple of different testing methods for web development. Functional testing looks at a particular piece of functionality on your site (like a form or database) and makes sure it does everything you’ve coded it to do.

Unit testing is another method. It tests the smallest bit of code that’s responsible for one thing on your site and examines it individually for correct operation.

Testing is a big part of the front end development process, but fortunately, it’s another area where there are frameworks to help you. Programs like Mocha and Jasmine are designed to speed up and simplify your testing process.

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