Recently, we made the announcement that we're taking a step forward with our curriculum by introducing a stronger focus on JavaScript. To be clear, we have always taught JavaScript, however it only comprised about 15 - 20% of our course before. Starting this September, our course is going to be over 50% JavaScript, with a much larger focus on NodeJS than before. We want to take this opportunity to discuss our motivations and expectations, and address any potential questions that may arise.


See the complete curriculum here.

As we have watched the tech industry grow and mature, one particular theme has emerged, and that is the growing popularity of the JavaScript language and ecosystem. Seeing organizations like Netflix and Paypal base their entire platforms on JavaScript, seeing the emergence of libraries and frameworks such as Angular and React, and also observing the sheer number of companies that are reaching for the toolkit that JavaScript offers to companies wanting to build cutting-edge products, has informed us on where the industry is going. As candidates have been approaching us to become students, as graduates have left our program, JavaScript keeps coming up as a recurring theme.

Fortunately, at Lighthouse Labs we have the benefit of being driven and developed by people with many years of experience in building software. When we see trends like this, it is a trigger for us to iterate again and continue to evolve our program. With that in mind, we began the process of structuring a curriculum around delivering the same high-quality education that we strive to give to each and every student, while using a different language as the foundation for the training and education. In doing this, we set a few priorities.

Training Quality, Polyglot Developers

First, it was imperative that we were achieving the same goals and education outcomes with the new curriculum. Students graduating from our program would be full-stack web developers with a strong understanding of the fundamentals of programming, and would be equipped with the best practices to allow them to contribute to a company from day one of employment. Students would graduate with a strong set of practical skills and enough theoretical understanding to allow them to be employable as a junior developer. This is our product; graduates that can contribute to the workforce and build great software. Any changes we made could not compromise this, under any circumstances.

Collaborative Curriculum

Second, we were going to allow the community of Senior Developers that we work with every day to deliver mentorship to our students and graduates to contribute to the curriculum. As such, we have set up a Github repository for the curriculum which members of our mentor and instructor team are all able to contribute to, nation-wide. This ensures that our curriculum is going to be informed by the best development minds in Canada, and always be current with today's ecosystem & market trends. We trust that our mentors know what it takes to be good developers and build good software. More than anything, we have always been proud of our Community-driven education model, where developers from the local community work together to bring their unique experiences, passion, personalities and approach to provide a rich learning environment for our students.

Project-Based Learning

Last, but certainly not least, we wanted to integrate the lessons and learnings we had gotten from our experience teaching our current curriculum. Learning how students accessed the material, seeing the most effective pieces of curriculum, and understanding that a project-based approach to learning to build software was far more successful, allowed us to craft and shape this new curriculum to meet the metrics that had already led to success for our students.

Throughout the history of Lighthouse Labs, our curriculum has always iterated. Our strong feedback loop has allowed us to figure out what works and what doesn't, with each cohort's experience becoming more refined. If there is one key lesson that the past two plus years have taught us, it is that we can always get better. We are constantly evaluating whether we are generating graduates with the skills necessary to go and contribute to the dev community, to companies, and to their own careers. The way that the new curriculum is setup will allow us to get even better data and track student feedback and outcomes.

We are excited to see the new curriculum move forward, and are making sure that all of our graduates have access to it as well to be able to broaden their education. Our graduates are polyglots, autodidacts, and life-long learners. We know they will benefit from the ideas we are moving forward with, and we are excited for the next wave of Lighthouse Labs students to experience this new program.

See the complete curriculum here.