How Long Does it Take to Learn JavaScript

According to “The State of the Octoverse” by GitHub, the statistics show that JavaScript is the most popular language globally. It is good investment to learn JavaScript for front-end or back-end programming.

How Long Will it Take?

In the book Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, there is the 10,000 hours rule. This rule states that there need to be so many accumulated hours of practice for achieving mastery in any field. If you invest 10,000 hours in learning and practicing JavaScript, you will be a true master!

However, you can learn the basic concepts in a much shorter amount of time. You could even get started writing your first program today—take a look at the Hello World program below!

Beginner JavaScript Concepts from Easy to Hard

The technical concepts in JavaScript can be associated with different skill levels. Take a look at the concepts below and see where you stand in terms of skill level. Based on the Mozilla Developer Network, MDN Web Docs, the basic technical concepts in JavaScript are:

Language Fundamentals

  • variables
  • conditional statements
  • loops
  • functions
  • objects

Coding for the Web

  • events
  • asynchronous JavaScript
  • the Document Object Model
  • Web APIs

Frameworks and Libraries

  • client-side frameworks like React and Vue
  • connecting to REST APIs
  • server-side JavaScript with Node

So if you are a beginner, set your sites on learning the beginner topics, one at a time. With our free online courses How to Become a Web Developer, or Modern JavaScript Fundamentals, you can start learning these concepts today.

Hello World Code Example

You can write your first line of JavaScript code right now! Just press Ctrl + Shift + J in Chrome, Ctrl + Shift + I in Firefox, or Option + Command + C in Safari. This will bring up the JavaScript console. Now type the following line of code and press Enter.

This is the traditional first program to create when you’re learning any new programming language.

As you’re learning—or even if you’re an expert programmer—the JavaScript console is a great place to try out new concepts or ideas.

Factors Affecting How Long it Takes to Learn JavaScript

It it Your First Computer Language?

If you already know another language, it will be much easier to learn JavaScript—the fundamental concepts of computer programming will already be familiar to you. Translating what you know to JavaScript won’t be too hard. However, it is more challenging to learn JavaScript as a first language because you’ll be learning to think like a coder at the same time.

However, many people choose JavaScript as their first programming language—it’s very popular and there are almost limitless free learning resources online.

What is Your Level of Dedication?

Learning how to program as a complete beginner is a lot of work, and it takes a real commitment to achieve mastery of JavaScript. You should expect to struggle and meet many challenges as you practice.

It’s best to come up with a timetable. Even a few minutes of practice every day will keep you in the learning zone. Whatever your schedule, don’t go too long without practicing or your new skills will start to fade.

Will You be Hobby or Professional Programming?

If you are just coding for a hobby, there is no real end to your learning. Every project is a challenge and an opportunity to learn. However, if you want to work as a professional, you’ll need to skill up to the point that you can work at the requisite level—and that might take more time.

What is Your Learning Style?

There are a huge volume of learning resources on JavaScript available on the internet and they come in various forms. Each form has its pros and cons. For example, books tend to be more in-depth, going deeper into explaining the different concepts, but they lack practicality and they go out of date more quickly. 

Videos, on the other hand, are more result and action oriented and they encourage the viewer to get involved in the coding process. By getting involved, you are introduced to the nuances that you may not get to learn from a book. 

Video-sharing platforms like YouTube have made it possible to access an abundance of recent video lessons on JavaScript from different online educators.

In addition, these tutors all have their own unique ways of teaching and explaining the various programming concepts to their audience.

To help speed up the learning process of JavaScript, it’s better to identify and go with the style that helps you understand better—be it books, videos, courses, a particular tutor and so on.

Free JavaScript Education

There are great, free JavaScript courses at Code Tuts+. Check out these for starters:



In this article, we looked at how much learning you need for different skill levels. More results will come with more time invested.

JavaScript can be easy if you want to learn only the basics. Or you can spend a decade mastering its complexities.

Good luck and have fun learning!

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