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5 July 2018

React Training Course for Experienced Javascript Developers

This Client asked JBI to run an intensive ReactJS course for Developers who were already familiar with Javascript, CSS and some of whom may have already experimented with React by themselves.

The course focused on giving Developers an understanding of what React is capable of, the advantages of using React, and how to design and develop webpages using React.

Delegates attending the course would see how this Library is fast, simple and flexible, and is suited to building single page apps with re-usable UI components.

We also talked about the tooling used in React development, demonstrating how to setup and use the React starter apps with Webpack and Jest.

Attendees got the option of building their webpage using these tools or using React without tooling (this helps them understand the React side from the tools side)

This Client has a technically demanding audience and success can only be achieved by ensuring we had a technically competent instructor who could really add value and who could engage delegates in the subject matter through use of technically challenging labs and excellent interpersonal skills. Wherever possible, Labs were tailored to reflect This Client environment, thereby ensuring better delegate engagement. Success of this course rests on frequent, connected practical exercises that allow the attendee to leave with a complete web app.

Practical work – the practical exercises in this course all build on the previous exercise in order to create a webpage that takes a JSON feed from Flikr and outputs a variable number of panels that show an image along with a title and description.  There was also a search box so that you could choose and change the content that you get from Flikr.  Each panel had a Like and Favourite button, the information was stored so that when you opened the page these settings were retrieved and displayed.

All exercises were relevant to the real world of Developers. Example answers were provided for all exercises, plus examples of all the course code and other associated examples of good practice and procedures.

As these were technically very demanding delegates - technical competence and excellent communications skills of instructor is essential.  Varied technical levels within a group – Managed by instructor by pairing strong/weak delegates, availability of additional more challenging Labs for stronger delegates and extra time spent with lower level delegates.

One of the main challenge with delivering these courses is that React uses a very different way of coding, it uses a Declarative style – many programmers are used to writing code in an Imperative style and changing the way they think about defining their output is sometimes a challenge. This hurdle is overcome by describing to delegates how their React code gets interpreted ‘under the bonnet’, showing the separation between their code, React’s interpretation and the underlying JavaScript.

Another challenge with delivering this course is that sometimes attendees are not clear on what is React and what is the tooling that you use to create the React based webpages. To help overcome this challenge, demos of Real World scenarios are used to put the technology into context. We also work with React without the development tools to start with, we can therefore demonstrate how to set up the dev tools and then let attendees choose which technique they prefer to use on the course.

A final challenge is that with new technologies like React, the technology itself is changing and new releases of the software are forever coming out. Instructors need to remain “on top” in terms of their own skills and feed back into updated courseware and Labs, in order to satisfy these demanding delegates.

Prior to the course, JBI specified the technical hardware and software setup requirements for delegate workstations as well as for the classroom and instructor (wifi, internet access)

In this case delegates provided their own laptops pre-loaded with software specified by JBI prior to the course.

For more information - See our React course outline
 

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