Best Online Courses for Web Design

When it comes to education, web designers have plenty of online and offline resources. But there is one thing that makes online education great — it lets you learn at your own pace. Here are the best platforms for web design courses online.

Web design is a rapidly changing environment — new techniques and technologies are constantly emerging, and as a web designer or developer, you have to be constantly learning to keep up.

When it comes to education, web designers don’t have a shortage of online and offline courses. But there is one thing that makes online education great — it lets you learn at your own pace.

In this article, we’ve decided to create an overview of the best places to take web design courses online as well as a list of courses you should consider. We’ve listed the courses in the context of educational platforms because you are likely to try other classes while you’re already on the platform. So it’s vital to know what that platform is capable of.

Table of Content

About the Platform​

Coursera is a platform that doesn’t require any introduction. It gives you access to online courses covering almost anything you can think of. Coursera provides a nice filtering mechanism that allows you to tailor the options according to your preferences (define a level of proficiency, educational institute, or type of program).

What It Offers for Web Designers

Coursera offers more than 250 courses for web specialists. Most of the courses are focussed on beginner and intermediate levels. The courses are created in partnership with educational institutes, so it’s possible to get a certificate after the completion. Many courses are available in multiple languages.

Price

Per course. Most courses are available for free enrollment, so you pay only for the certificate. 

Pros

  • Each course has information about the expected time of completion (e.g. “Approx. 13 hours to complete; Suggested: 5 weeks, 2-3 hours per week”)
  • Many courses are created in collaboration with famous academic institutes
  • Many courses are available for free

Cons

  • Coursera isn’t explicitly focused on web design and development

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Beginners

Estimated time: 3 months to complete this course

Price: Free enrollment

You will learn how to design and create websites, and be able to build a responsive, accessible, web portfolio using HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. During the capstone, you will design a web portfolio demonstrating your growth as a web developer and your knowledge of accessible web design.

What you will learn:

  • Basics of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS3)
  • How to add interactivity to web pages with Javascript
  • How to apply responsive design to enable a page to be viewed on various devices

Skill level: Intermediate

Estimated time: approx. 24 hours to complete this course

Price: Free enrollment

This course is focused on the user’s initial experience while coping with the challenges of research, planning, setting goals, understanding the user, structuring content, and developing interactive sequences. In this course, you will also complete a large scale project — developing a comprehensive plan for a complex website.

What you’ll learn:

  • How to determine a strategy for web design
  • How to outline a scope for design
  • How to design sitemaps

About the Platform​

edX was founded by Harvard and MIT and has become a home to more than 20 million learners. The platform provides the highest-quality learning experiences in various fields, including web design.

What It Offers for Web Designers

edX offers various courses for web developers ranging from general web design to relatively niche areas such as web development for AWS or Web security.

Price

Per course. Many courses are available for free. 

Pros

  • Many courses are created in partnership with industry leaders. Students will get highly valuable practical skills in web development.
  • Easy to evaluate the required effort. All courses provide information about length and effort (i.e., “Length: 4 Weeks; Effort: 2-4 hours per week)

Cons

  • edX is less focused on general web design or development, and more on specialized web design and development. It’s not a very good option for someone who wants to make a first step in the field of web design.

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Advanced

Estimated time: 7 months (5-7 hours per week)

Price: $499.50 for the full program experience

On this course, you will learn how to develop websites using the latest web standards – how to code with modern HTML5 tags, draw and animate fun Web graphics, as well as play audio and video elements. 

What you’ll learn:

  • How to code with HTML5
  • CSS best practices for web page design
  • Fundamentals of JavaScript to help you develop interactive web apps
  • Understand why accessibility and internationalization are important

Skill level: Advanced

Estimated time: 6 weeks (6-8 hours per week)

Price: Free, but you can purchase a verified certificate for $129 USD

In this course, you will learn all the new HTML5 features to help create excellent websites and applications in a simplified but powerful way. You will also practice coding techniques through multiple interactive examples.

What you’ll learn:

  • Learn the HTML5 tags and discover the latest HTML5 forms features
  • Play with the audio and video tags 
  • Draw and animate fun Web graphics
  • Test the basic APIs, such as Web storage and geolocation

About the Platform​

Lynda.com is one of the oldest educational platforms available today (it was created by Lynda Weinman back in 1995). In 2015 Lynda.com became a part of LinkedIn, and since, has also been known as LinkedIn Learning.

What It Offers for Web Designers

The platform offers more than 270 courses in web design. The classes are largely focused on beginner to intermediate levels. So unless you’re looking for advanced courses, you’re likely to find the exact course you’re looking for.

Price

Subscription-based. 1-month free trial, then $29.99/month.

Pros

  • Carefully curated courses.
  • Personalized course recommendations. Lynda.com integrates with LinkedIn, and LinkedIn users can find training content that’s relevant to their needs. Plus, as soon as you learn new skills, LinkedIn will help you to highlight them in your profile.
  • It’s possible to download videos for offline viewing. 

Cons

  • Need to rely on a search to find the right course. Although all courses are moderated, with so much in cross-overs can happen in terms of the information they provide, so it’s hard to progress gradually.

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 1h 54m

Price:  –

This course will help you get the most out of WordPress and create feature-rich blogs and websites. You will learn how to create and publish posts and pages; create and edit blocks, and define reusable content blocks to take full advantage of the new block editor codenamed “Gutenberg.”

What you will learn:

  • How to create post and pages
  • Formatting text
  • Publishing and scheduling posts
  • Adding images, audio, and video
  • Bulk editing post and pages
  • Working with reusable blocks

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 1h 54m

Price:  –

This course provides a broad introduction to accessibility and then focuses on practical steps to ensure that your WordPress themes, plugins, and content are usable and accessible to all. See how to test your site to make sure it meets the most current accessibility standards.

What you’ll learn:

  • How to create accessible content
  • WordPress core accessibility features
  • How to create more accessible plugins and themes
  • How to test site accessibility

About the Platform​

Skillshare is an online marketplace for video-based courses.

What It Offers for Web Designers

Skillshare offers a wide range of web design courses, mainly for beginner and intermediate levels.

Price

Subscription-based, a monthly package costs $15 per month, while an annual plan is $8.25 per month or $99 per year (billed annually)

Pros

  • Wide range of topics for beginners
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Quality of training varies

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 16h 47m

Price:

The course has 127 lessons and covers everything you need to build professional responsive web sites. You will go all the way from creating your first page through to uploading your website to the internet. 

What you’ll learn:

  • How to work with responsive images and icons. 
  • How to create forms and to choose great fonts for your website. 
  • How to add carousels, cards, and complex looking menus.

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: the total course duration is 1h 10m

Price:

This course is all about visual hierarchy in design and spacing. The course has 11 lessons on the various ways to establish a visual hierarchy and how to use proper spacing to achieve a minimalistic style of web design. 

What you’ll learn:

  • The concepts of visual hierarchy in design and spacing
  • Functional minimalism and how to use it in web design

About the Platform​

Treehouse was founded by web designer Ryan Carson in 2011. The platform offers more than 300 courses in design and development. More than just an educational organization, Treehouse also an excellent community for students. 

 

What It Offers for Web Designers

Treehouse created a track called “Web design.” This track consists of a list of courses that will take you from the web basics (such as “What is HTML?”) to the specific areas of web design (such as HTML grids). Treehouse uses a video format of lessons, which makes it easy to comprehend the information.

Price

Subscription-based, starting at $25/mo. The price will be higher if you want to get advanced training (up to $199/mo). Treehouse offers a seven-day free trial for everyone who wants to check out the training first.

Pros

  • Treehouse offers a well-structured learning program. It adopts a progressive teaching method—the student builds upon the basics and moves on to more advanced areas.
  • Treehouse is known for constantly updating its lessons. The information in courses is up-to-date with the latest techniques and technologies.
  • Treehouse uses clever techniques of awards and badges to motivate you to finish a track. Those awards and badges are visible to employers, so they can evaluate a profile based on the awards. 
  • A supportive online community of people you learn with.

Cons

  • Video tutorials can only be downloaded when you choose pricier plans.

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 43 min

Price:

In this course, you’ll learn about the major steps involved in designing websites. You will learn how to gather information, explore potential concepts, and iterate on a design. By the end, you’ll have the foundation you need to continue your design journey.

What you’ll learn:

  • Design discovery
  • Design exploration

Skill level: Advanced

Estimated time: 47min

Price:

In this course, you’re going to use the foundational principles of responsive design as a framework for thinking about page layout. By the end, you should have a better understanding of how to approach common decisions in responsive design.

What you’ll learn:

  • Responsive design theory
  • Media queries
  • Breakpoints
  • Page layout

About the Platform​

Udacity offers vocational courses for professionals (the platform calls them ‘Nano Degrees’).

What It Offers for Web Designers

Udacity offers two courses for web specialists—Front-end web developer and Full-stack web developer. Both are long-term courses. 

Price

Pay per course. The four-month access to Udacity will cost $1436.

Pros

  • Strong focus on web development. 
  • Career-focused courses. Udacity teaches specialized skills and helps seasoned web developers to get to the next level of their careers.

Cons

  • Courses aimed at seasoned specialists rather than beginners.
  • Expensive 
  • Education requires a serious time commitment.

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Advanced

Estimated time: 4 months (at 5-10 hrs/week)

Price: $1436

The goal of the Front End Web Developer Nanodegree program is to equip students with the skills they need to build and develop a variety of websites and applications. Graduates of this Nanodegree program will be able to construct responsive websites using CSS, Flexbox, and CSS Grid, develop interactive websites using JavaScript and HTML, and connect a web application to backend server data using JavaScript.

What you’ll learn:

  • CSS & Website Layout
  • JavaScript and the DOM
  • Web APIs and Asynchronous Applications
  • Build Tools, Webpack, and Service Worker

Skill level: Advanced

Estimated time: 4 months (at 5-10 hrs/week)

Price: $1436

By the end of this course, you will get the unique skills they need to build database-backed APIs and web applications. A graduate of this program will be able to design and build databases for software applications, create and deploy database-backed web APIs, and secure and manage user authentication and access control for an application backend.

What you’ll learn:

  • SQL and Data Modeling for the Web
  • Identity Access Management

About the Platform​

Just like Skillshare, Udemy is a marketplace where anyone can post a course. All courses have video explanations, and many courses are available in multiple languages. 

What It Offers for Web Designers

Udemy provides a broad range of web design topics. You can find everything from web fundamentals to very niche courses (such as how to use Adobe After Effects to create web animation). Although most of these courses are for beginners.

Price

Pay per course. The price starts at $10.44 with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Pros

  • Lots of valuable courses for beginners. 
  • The platform shows total ratings and reviews for each course. It’s easy to see what courses are in demand for students. Also, all teachers have a rating, and it’s easy to understand the quality of the content they provide. 
  • It’s possible to download videos for offline viewing using Udemy app for mobile

Cons

  • The quality of courses can vary
  • No free trial

Recommended Courses

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 4 hours

Price: $10.44

In this course, you’ll learn how to design a professional website in Adobe Illustrator CC. You will start right at the basics of Illustrator and work our way through to building professional UI designs. This course doesn’t cover how to code a website but focuses on the design processes that professional UI designers use when working.

What you’ll learn:

  • Work as a UI designer building web design & app designs
  • Use Illustrator to a professional level
  • Know how to build wireframes
  • Know how to build sitemaps
  • Know how to design for a responsive website
  • Professional workflows and shortcuts

Skill level: Beginner

Estimated time: 10 hours

Price: $10.44

This course will teach you the fundamental psychological principles of good landing page design and will help you understand the buyer’s journey so you can design landing pages that convert better. It will also teach you how to test your designs so you can design final landing pages that will convert 20-30% more than your current website and landing pages.

What you’ll learn:

  • Design a high converting landing page from scratch without a single line of code
  • Double or triple your landing page conversion rates by applying the principles of clarity, simplicity and perceived value
  • Run A/B tests to guarantee a better conversion rate over time without knowing any statistics
  • Know exactly how to design a Call-to-Action that will motivate your visitor’s to take the actions you want them to take
  • Apply psychological persuasion frameworks to your landing pages and websites

Never Stop Learning

Good web designers are lifelong learners. The process of learning web design is an excellent way to enhance your creativity and ultimately allows you to build a solid set of skills. And since web design is a broad field with a lot of different areas, the more knowledge you gain, the more in demand you will be.

About the Author

Nick Babich
Nick Babich
Nick Babich is a developer, tech enthusiast, and UX lover. He has spent the last 10 years working in the software industry with a specialized focus on development. He counts advertising, psychology, and cinema among his myriad interests.

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Comments

7 Responses

  1. This article fails to mention a GREAT online resource, freeCodeCamp (https://www.freecodecamp.org/). I have no affiliation with freeCodeCamp other than as an appreciative user.

    As they state:

    freeCodeCamp is a donor-supported tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

    Our mission: to help people learn to code for free. We accomplish this by creating thousands of videos, articles, and interactive coding lessons – all freely available to the public. We also have thousands of freeCodeCamp study groups around the world.

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