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Liz Lam
Liz Lam

Posted on • Updated on

A Review of JavaScript30 aka How To Finish Your Online Courses

I love school. I finished 3 majors at my university and had 45 extra units by the time I graduated. I would have stayed in college forever if I could had figured out a way to make money by being a professional student.

I love being in the Software Industry. There is always work to do and so much to learn. On top of that, there are a ton of resources out there to learn pretty much whatever you want. I especially love online courses from organizations like or Coursera. Every time I peruse a course catalog on some learning platform, I feel like a kid in a candy store.

I have one problem though. A problem I didn't have in college.

I start way more online classes than I actually finish.

I get distracted by work, responsibilities, and shiny new things. So when I started JavaScript30, a 30 day coding challenge by Wes Bos, I wanted to be more committed to completing the course.

The course is fantastic. Every lesson, Wes takes the viewer through building pure vanilla JavaScript projects. No React, no Vue, no jQuery or Angular, just JavaScript. This approach really helped me with learning about the fundamental building blocks of web development. Having only React development experience in a professional capacity, I was actually amazed how much I could get away with not knowing and still be a React developer (perhaps that is more of a testament to the React framework than anything else).

Anyways, I digress. The course started off so good, I wanted to ensure a way for myself to actually finish it. So I came up with a plan where I took two key things that helped me stay successful in college: Writing notes & accountability.

Writing Notes

After every lesson, I sharpen a pencil, take some piece of recycled paper and wrote 3 things I learned. It didn't matter how simple or complicated it was, I wrote it down. This only took a few minutes but I found this review/summary note taking process helped solidify what I was learning in a tremendous way. At the same time, I am also creating a log and index of my progress.


Once I was done writing the notes, I took a picture of it and posted it to a specially created Instagram account. It's interesting that although I didn't have that many followers, this social media sharing became my accountability to finish. Every time I looked at that account, I felt motivated to do another lesson and take one step closer to completion.

Instagram Pic

Although, I didn't finish the course in 30 days, I did finish it. I believe this technique (which I'm going to affectionately call InstaLearning) provided just enough structure to keep me disciplined yet fun enough to not feel like a burden. I would encourage anyone who likes online courses to give InstaLearning a try.

And anyone who wants to learn more Javascript, take the JavaScript30 course. It's awesome!

Top comments (3)

inglsmit profile image
Pavel Usov

I have the same problem) I've created the group in Telegramm messanger where I've added my friends there and every 2 weeks I sent the report about my progress) Usually i apologize that my plans broken)

grepliz profile image
Liz Lam

That is also a good way to keep accountable, even if you apologize, at least you are thinking about it.
I like using this social media technique (InstaLearning!) because I can go at my own pace.

debojyotichatterjee9 profile image
Debojyoti Chatterjee • Edited

Well that's a good idea!
Even I get distracted a lot and cannot decide what to learn when cuz there are so many things to look into everytime!!
Some times I wish we had 30 hours in a day or something!! 😋
About JS30 I made a github repo and I make sure that I commit everyday, sometimes I may not get the time to finish one lesson (cuz I do this after I return home from my work) which are lengthy but I commit whatever I do.
And I try tweaking on every lesson, try to make the functions shorter, try some ES6+ wherever I can...