Microsoft Virtual Academy: Visual Studio

“Visual Studio is an integrated development environment (IDE) from Microsoft. It is used to develop computer programs for Microsoft Windows, as well as web sites, web applications, and web services. Visual Studio uses Microsoft software development platforms such as Windows API, Windows Forms, Windows Presentation Foundation, Windows Store and Microsoft Silverlight. It can produce both native code and managed code.” ~ Wikipedia

Visual Studio

Visual Studio

In other words, it is THE place to create amazing content of all kinds. Visual Studio supports a variety of programming languages, and includes a code editor. It has built-in languages, which include C++, C++/CLI, VB.NET, C#, F#, and others. It also has the capability to support languages like M, Python, and Ruby. Furthermore, it supports XML/XSLT, HTML/XHTML, JavaScript, and CSS.

Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) offers 174 different courses on Visual Studio, corresponding with its different versions and variations:

  1. Visual Studio – 9 courses
  2. Visual Studio 2010 – 2 courses
  3. Visual Studio 2012 – 34 courses
  4. Visual Studio 2013 – 125 courses
  5. Visual Studio 2015 – 3 courses
  6. Visual Studio.NET – 1 course

These courses cover C#, XAML, HTML5, and JavaScript, as well as material that will help students adopt the application lifecycle management (ALM) features in Visual Studio. The Visual Studio courses offered at MVA are very demo-rich and hand-on oriented. They are designed to provide developers with the tools used to build Windows Store apps, desktop apps, mobile apps, ASP.NET web apps, and XML web services.

The latest version of Visual Studio (Visual Studio 2015) was released in July, 2015, and an updated version (Visual Studio Update 1 RC) was released in October, 2015.

There are three MVA courses available in Visual Studio 2015: Creating Dynamic Webpages with Knockout, Mastering Node.js Modules and Packages with Visual Studio Code, and Using Node.js with Visual Studio Code.

The top courses in the entire Visual Studio section are: C# Fundamentals for Absolute Beginners, JavaScript Fundamentals for Absolute Beginners, Programming in C# Jump Start, and Developing in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3 Jump Start.

Course Review: Visual Basic (VB) Fundamentals for Absolute Beginners

One very popular course is Visual Basic (VB) Fundamentals for Absolute Beginners, instructed by Bob Tabor. This course teaches the core concept of VB, which can be applied to games, mobile environments, and client applications. Acquiring the right tools, writing code, debugging features, creating customizations, and more – this is all in this introductory VB course.

Using Visual Basic

Using Visual Basic

The topics covered in this course are:

  • Creating Your First Visual Basic Program
  • Dissecting the First Visual Basic Program You Created
  • Quick Overview of the Visual Basic Express Edition IDE
  • Declaring Variables and Assigning Values
  • Branching with the If . . . Then . . . Else Decision Statement
  • Operators, Expressions, and Statements
  • for . . . Next Iterations
  • Creating Arrays of Values​
  • Creating and Calling Simple Overloaded Helper Methods​
  • while Iterations and Reading Data from a Text File
  • Working with Strings
  • Working with Dates
  • Understanding and Creating Classes
  • More About Classes and Methods
  • Working with Classes and Inheritances in the .NET Framework Class Library​
  • Understanding Namespaces and Adding References to Assemblies​
  • Understanding Modules, Scope, and Utilizing Accessibility Modifiers
  • Enumerations and the switch Decision Statement
  • Gracefully Handling Exceptions
  • Working with Collections
  • Filtering and Managing Data in Collections Using LINQ
  • Understanding Event-Driven Programming
  • Getting Familiar with the My Namespace
  • Next Steps

There are no prerequisites for enrolling in this course. It is categorized as a Level 100, runs approximately 10 hours, and includes 26 modules, 22 assessment exams. It is worth 116 points. Explore the benefits of using VB with Bob Tabor.

Tabor is a .NET and C# developer, a Channel9 / MVA contributor, and the founder of LearnVisualStudio.NET. He is an author and entrepreneur, with a 12-year history of experience and success.

Course Review: Introduction to jQuery

Another very popular course is Introduction to jQuery, instructed by Jeremy Foster and Rachel Appel. This course is here to teach students what exactly jQuery is, and why it's so popular. Microsoft’s experts teach you what it is, why you need it, and how you use it. Learn about jQuery’s history and contributors, and explore lots of features. JavaScript library makes DOM manipulation and event handling easier, and this course helps users understand how it words. Examine AJAX, asynchrony, and effects, and get practical guidance on when to use jQuery, and when to combine it with other libraries.

jQuery

jQuery

The topics covered in this course are:

  • Intro to jQuery
  • Selection
  • Manipulating the DOM
  • Events
  • Effects
  • Ajax and Async
  • Additional Libraries
  • Recommended Resources & Next Steps

While this Level 200 course has no prerequisites, jQuery is essentially just a JavaScript library. Because of that, a strong grasp of JavaScript is needed for understanding jQuery and its features. This intro course is worth 68 points, runs approximately six hours, has eight modules, seven assessment examinations, and includes slide presentations. This course is rated nearly 5 stars out of 5, based on almost 100 user ratings.

Appel is a software engineer and independent consultant, with a focus on web technologies, and ASP.NET. She is a speaker, author, mentor, coder, and blogger with 20+ years of experience. She works closely with Microsoft as an ASPInsider and IE userAgent.

Foster is a Developer Evangelist for Microsoft, with a focus on web platforms, Windows apps, and Azure. He is an author, presenter, coder, and blogger. Fun fact: Foster enjoys hiking and sailing!

Visual Studio offers developers a world of options and opportunities. With every new edition that is released, newer and more advanced features are made available to designers and coders. Using these tools, there is no limit to what IT professionals can do. In a word – empowerment. That is what Visual Studio does. From start to finish, it is an essential tool for those seeking to take their knowledge and creativity to the next level. MVA offers a variety of tutorials and training videos, hosted and presented by the best of the best in the industry. Whether you are a seasoned developer or a novice. Let MVA be your guide in the next step of your career!

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