Course Review - 2021 Complete Web Dev Course (Angela Yu)

App Brewery Course

tl;dr tl;dr Very good intro to full stack dev but very long

Publish Date: 2021-08-31

Return Home

*Before starting, I took this course from December 2020 to about February 2021, but looking at it now it doesn't seem like there have been any updates to it.*

The App Brewery

The App Brewery is a coding school(?) that has both online and offline classes covering a range of topics related to web and app development. These courses are offered through their home page as well as on Udemy (courses are the same).

Available Courses

There are a number of courses available ranging from app development (iOS, Flutter), to web dev, Python, machine learning, and more. I have completed the web dev course and the Python course, and have started the iOS/Swift course.

The 2021 Complete Web Development Course

The first course I took! This course is long! But it covers basically every aspect of web development. You'll get a good look at the basics - HTML5, CSS3, and Javascript. Even though it's not as commonly used these days, you'll get a basic intro to jQuery as well as well a look at Bootstrap (CSS framework). Important other things like Node JS, Express, Git/Github, command line, and authentication are also covered in brief. A basic look at SQL databases and a slightly more in-depth look at Mongo DB is also included in the course. A look at React basics wraps up the course. Let's look at the sections in a bit more depth.

HTML and CSS Sections

The first few sections cover the basics of HTML and CSS. If you're a complete newbie, then these sections are very valuable to understand what is in a basic HTML and CSS file and how they interact with each other. That being said, you won't learn any really amazing CSS tricks in particular and you will need a lot more practice and studying to get decent at CSS.

Verdict - Very useful for complete beginners

Bootstrap Section

The next section covers Bootstrap. If I remember correctly, the lessons use Bootstrap 4, but now Bootstrap 5 has been released. For the most part it isn't a big issue, but I do recall that some of the files she started with are slightly changed in the update and some of the Bootstrap classes are also slightly different.

Verdict - Meh. It was good to see something like Bootstrap, but I think I've only used Bootstrap once in the real world and have otherwise used things like straight CSS and Tailwind CSS quite a bit more.

Javascript and jQuery Sections

A big chunk of this course is devoted to Javascript and with good reason. The course covers most of the important things in Javascript, but at the time I still felt really confused by Javascript and how it worked. It wasn't until later taking other courses that I started to really get the hang of Javascript. Of course that may be because I had a foundation to build from and was benefitting from repetition, but just based on this course I really didn't get Javascript.

Verdict - The absolute basics (declaring variables and accessing them) made a lot of sense, but when it got to DOM manipulation I quickly got lost. Plan on doing extra studying on Javascript.

Node JS and Express JS Sections

To be honest I can't really remember anything from these sections. I think they were fairly brief.

Verdict - Kind of lost in the midst of Javascript and databases.

APIs, JSON, Git, Github Sections

The API and JSON section was kind of like the Node/Express sections - kind of lost in everything and I don't really remember anything. However, the Git and Github sections I do remember being quite useful as it goes over some of the more common command line commands for Git and how the files move around the different sections.

Verdict - Important stuff as version control and being able to push to and push from Github (or wherever) is something that every programmer needs to do. API calls and using JSON is also important, but I think it wasn't really covered that much here and more just left to understand through usage later.

Databases (SQL and MongoDB/Mongoose)

A hugely important section, but again one that I felt was a bit confusing. The SQL section was pretty straightforward (this course used SQLlite online). The NOSQL section (Mongo DB) was simultaneously understandable but also quite confusing. I don't know if people in the real world who use Mongo DB use the command line to interact with their database, but it was something I didn't get in the end. Because you spent a lot of time learning how to run the commands in the shell, but then the next section switched to Mongoose and doing it in the code? So, I get that there is value in learning the absolute fundamentals and basics, but I felt slightly un-prepared for dealing with the next section. I also seem to recall that some of the stuff with Mongo DB were out of date, and that was frustrating.

Verdict - Important and useful, but ultimately a bit confusing. Admittedly databases are still something I struggle a lot with.


This section covered a handful of basic levels of authentication and security - simple name and password, environment variables, basic hashing, salting and hashing, cookies and sessions, and third-party authentication (IE Google). Security is, of course, a massively important topic especially if you are doing full-stack or backend work. And I kinda wish this section had been a bit more in-depth. I also kinda wish that it covered other third-party ways to do simple authentication related stuff like password recovery, hints, and resets.

Verdict - Highly informative on how basic security works and why certain security practices are encouraged. Wish it had been a bit more in-depth and a bit broader in scope.


The final section covers React (CRA), ES6, and JSX. Doing it along side, it made sense. But trying to do it on my own was a challenge. This section uses React hooks (there is very little mention of class components) and only covers the useState hook. For the most part it is just trying to show how React works in basic.

Verdict - React (and reactive re-usable components) is hugely important for modern web dev. However, don't count on this course/section being enough to really understand A) how React works and B) how to use React in a more complete way. As mentioned it only covers useState and doesn't even get into more complex state management like Redux or any other form of global state. Also, if you are not doing additional practice/studying outside of this course, I doubt you will really have enough Javascript understanding to really understand what is going on.

Overall Pros

If you're clueless about web dev this course gives you a pretty good look at all aspects of web development. I also think that Angela is one of the better teachers in terms of explanations and planning a course. There is a nice mix of explanations and opportunities to complete a task or project yourself.

A LOT of people have taken this course. As such, the comments section is very active. So, if you have some problem or issue someone else either A) already has had the same problem and a solution has been found or B) someone else can answer your question and help you get to a solution.

Overall Cons

Because there is so much in the course you likely will forget a lot of it unless you spend a significant amount of time reviewing and re-doing lessons and activities. Sections also occasionally felt like they dragged on a times and were a bit too long.

As with any online course there were sections that were out of date and if you're a beginner following the official documentation or re-factoring the code you've already written from the course can be daunting. Granted these are important and necessary skills for programmers, but in the moment it can feel like an annoying and frustrating thing to have to do.

Who Should Take This Course?

I would recommend this course to someone who is either A) completely new to web dev and wants to get a broad overview of what is involved or B) someone new to web dev who isn't sure if they should do frontend, backend, or full-stack dev (or something completely different). Because of its broad nature this course is ideal for someone who needs to get a lot of information and some experience using different aspects of web dev in a (relatively) short period of time. To be very specific, I would recommend this course to someone who is considering a boot camp, but isn't really sure if web dev is right for them or as a starting point for a new web dev to do in place of a boot camp.