Best Online Courses #2

Programming Mobile Applications for Android Handheld Systems (Part 1 & Part 2) on Coursera by University of Maryland College Park

This 2-part Coursera course on Android programming by Dr. Adam Porter (PhD) at the University of Maryland College Park is an excellent (although now outdated a bit) intermediate-level introduction to developing for the platform using Java. It’s not for newcomers to programming, as it assumes a solid background in both Java and OOP (Object-Oriented Programming), as well as intermediate knowledge of operating systems and networking. The videos were well-presented with a combination of presentational graphics and screenshots, and every topic was clearly and sufficiently explained by Dr. Porter before each assignment. The assignments were never too hard and were just challenging enough that I felt I gained a solid amount of knowledge with each one. The topics covered a wide gamut, and by the end of the course I had a much better understanding of how to develop a relatively full-featured app for Android. Probably the only complaint I have has nothing to do with this course, but is merely the unavailability of this professor for a more advanced course in Android development, as Coursera’s only other Android-related courses have a professor from a different university, Dr. Douglas Schmidt at Vanderbilt, who is no doubt very knowledgeable but does not present and explain material on camera as effectively.

Conclusion: Highly recommended for anyone with a working knowledge of Java looking to learn how to start building native Android apps.

Rating: 5 out of 5